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Health Watch: FDA Calls for New Sunscreen Labels

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Kim Hunt had melanoma four years ago.

She says sunscreen was not a priority when she was younger.

"I wouldn't reapply all the time because although I knew thatI wasn't really going to get tan. There was some hope I would get a little bitof color," she adds.

Dermatologists hope new labels on sunscreen products willhelp consumers make better choices about the products they use to block thesun's harmful rays.

New label requirements from the Food and Drug Administrationdo away with words like sunblock, waterproof and sweatproof.

Dr. Ellen Marmur of the American Academy of Dermatology says,"You should see sweat resistant or water resistant plus 40 minute or 80minutes.. meaning reapply that 40 or 80 minutes."

Products will only get the water resistant label if they passtesting. Same goes for "broad spectrum".. which means the sunscreenprotects against both UVA and UVB rays.

Dr. Marmur says, "anything off the shelf that says broadspectrum 30–50, and you should use it and reapply it and that should take allthe confusion away."

Under the new rules, a Product with an SPF below 15 has awarning saying it only helps prevent sunburn and does not protect against skincancer or skin aging.

Dermatologists also recommend putting on sunscreen 15 minutesbefore going out.. wear hats and protective clothing and stay in the shade whenyou can.

Hunt is now vigilant about protecting her skin from the sun.

"I don't walk out of the house with anything less than 30, mymoisturizer has SPF in it. my makeup has spf in it."

The new regulations will also apply to cosmetics andmoisturizers that has sun protection.

The American Academy of Dermatology recommends using asunscreen that's water resistant, offers broad–spectrum protection and has anspf of 30 or greater.

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