Skin Care

Can I use sunscreen after expiry date?

Can I use sunscreen after expiry date?

A lot of sunscreens can be used for approximately two to three years after we open them. But this is not always the case since it is always dependent on the company that produced the sunscreen and the expiry date given on the bottle.

Expired sunscreens are less effective in protecting the skin against the sun rays; this leads to the likelihood of getting sunburns and worse skin cancer. Although using an expired sunscreen is better than no sunscreen at all and especially if they contain active ingredients like zinc oxide.

But when it comes to heavy creams, they provide better protection and can still provide a shield for the skin against the sun rays. The creamy sunscreen works better as compared with the gels or sprays, and they can protect the sun.

Yes, you can use sunscreen after the expiry date. However, you should be extremely careful since not all expired sunscreens are effective in protecting you against the sunrays. You should not use an expired sunscreen six months after the expiry of your sunscreen.

Some conditions are not good for sunscreen oils; they provide a good condition for them to lose their effectiveness even before they expire. These conditions include storing your sunscreen in hot places or exposing it to moisture can lead to the sunscreen quickly losing its effectiveness even before it expires.

Can I use sunscreen after expiry date?

In this article, we have explained in detail about using the sunscreen after the expiry date. You should be aware of the expiry date and must be careful when using an expired sunscreen. 

Yes, unopened sunscreen can be expired long before you even bought it. This is because it is not possible in some cases to know if a sunscreen is expired because it may not be indicated on the bottle or maybe faded over time. But there is some good news because most of the sunscreens have been used for a maximum period of three years and have still proven to be effective.

 This means that time on the shelf does not affect its efficiency because all sunscreen must be produced with a three years guarantee. But it is important to ensure that you have purchased a product that has an expiration date to know how much time has cut into the three years.

Unopened sunscreen can easily expire depending on how you store it. If you store your sunscreen under high temperatures, it is likely to go bad and lose its effectiveness. Another reason could be that it has been stored in a place that has moisture; therefore, an unopened sunscreen can expire depending on the conditions it is stored in. Therefore it is important to ensure that you have bought a sunscreen that has an expiry date or manufacturing date and good storage.

How long does sunscreen last after expiring? 

A sunscreen expiration date is as provided for all manufacturers is a maximum period of three years, and not more this is because its composition may have degraded over some time. But sunscreen is not necessarily to expire over time, but when placed in harsh temperatures, it may be less effective.

This is the reason why the FDA guidelines state that sunscreen oils should be placed under room temperatures.

 This is the main reason why it is not good to put sunscreen in the car, and also, when taking it with you when you visit the beach leaving your sunscreen oil in the open is not good. Some of these sunscreen oils can be effective even after they are expired, especially if they have zinc oxide or titanium dioxide.

These do not dissolve into the skin but can absorb and reflect the sun rays making them effective and can last for long due to this. Most especially, this is common in cream-based sunscreens. Dermatologists also have their say on this fact of using expired sunscreens, and they do not support this. But using an expired sunscreen is better than no sunscreen at all.

If you have an expired sunscreen or if you are not sure whether your sunscreen is expired, it is good to also use other protective measures. These involve using protective wear like hats and avoid exposing yourself in the sun, especially between the hours of 10 am to 4 pm when the sun is at its strongest UV rays.

How can you tell if your sunscreen has expired?

When your sunscreen has expired, it loses its consistency and its effectiveness. This makes it easy to know when it has expired. Sometimes you can notice it appears to be discolored, and it could no longer look, smell or feel the way it was when you bought it from the store. For instance, for physical sunscreen, they oxidize. Thus they become chemically unfit to use, and it does not matter whether they are in spray or cream.

You can also check your sunscreen, whereby it looks like the liquid is dispensed, especially if it was creamy oil. The reason for this could be that some of the ingredients like zinc oxide have sunken to the bottom of the tube. Another way you can tell if your sunscreen has expired is when it has changed color and turned yellow.

Another way to know if your sunscreen has expired is if you notice you had started to develop allergies that have not been there when you were using the sunscreen before. You can also look out for skin sensitivity; this could be a sign; it is time to throw away the sunscreen.

Skin irritation is one of the most common signs to look out for to determine if the sunscreen is already expired. The appearance of rashes could be another way you can tell if your sunscreen has expired.

Does sunscreen go bad in excessive heat?

Sunscreen is not just like any other beauty product; this is because it is used and prepared for medical reasons. This is the reason why it should be treated with care like any other drug is taken care of. Heat is one of the causes of sunscreen to deteriorate and lose its effectiveness. Since in the presence of excessive heat, sunscreen breaks down faster; therefore it is important to keep it in a cool place.

What happens if you use sunscreen after the expiry date?

The issue of the expiration of sunscreen has not yet been fully settled, not even by a specialist. The only thing they say is if you use sunscreen, do not exceed three years, or you can check your sunscreen on its expiration date. But what if you do not remember the date you bought it and there are no expiry dates on the bottle, and you decided to use it anyway so what would happen.

In some cases, your sunscreen oil may still have some UV blocking strength, but it would not be at its full strength. This is because it is not possible to know if its SPF has dropped for even a sunscreen with an SPF of 70 can drop, and you won’t know it is dropped by how much for it could be SPF of 60 or 5. Because the only way to determine this is if you take it to a laboratory.

Therefore what happens when you use sunscreen oil that has expired is that you don’t get protection against the harmful sun rays. This is why it is advisable to throw away any sunscreen that has expired. But unlike any other products, sunscreens are meant for medical purposes such as preventing sunburns, decreasing the risk of getting skin cancer, and prevents premature aging.

On the other hand, expired sunscreen is not good; it could also cause skin infections since they can start to grow molds or bacteria. Expired sunscreen can also lead to skin irritation and the development of allergic reactions. Photo allergic reactions are developed when the sunscreen products combine with UVA and UVR rays. Normal sunscreen last for two hours on the face.

Oxybenzone, which is widely used in sunscreen because it is a blocking UVA agent it is the main reason why one would develop a photoallergic reaction. Other sunscreen ingredients that can induce the photoallergic reactions include benzophenones, cinnamates, and dibenzoyl methane.

But these reactions caused by expired sunscreen have a slight chance not to occur when you use products that have inorganic ingredients. These ingredients include those that contain Titanium dioxide or zinc oxide because they could protect against the UVA rays by reflecting it.

They are good since they do not penetrate the skin, protecting it with minimal skin irritation and skin sensitivity. These are the major reasons to check on the ingredients before purchasing any sunscreen product.

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