Understanding the active ingredients in sunscreen is a bit like learning a foreign language that uses a different alphabet. Suffice it to say in short that sunscreens are made up of a combination of two types of ingredients: those that reflect ultraviolet (UV) rays and those that absorb UV rays. Although that might sound simple enough, there are also two types of rays: UVA rays and UVB rays. UVB causes sunburn at the outer layers of skin, but UVA causes sun damage that reach deeper layers of skin. Both UVA and UVB radiation can contribute to the development of skin cancer. Most sunscreen ingredients protect against UVB rays, but meradimate absorbs UVA radiation and is therefore included in many sunscreens. There are no known issues with meradimate in terms of toxicity and it does not appear to be absorbed into the skin. Therefore, sunscreens that include meradimate are providing a broader spectrum of sun protection, regardless of the SPF factor. In addition to sunscreen, manufacturers have also included meradimate in lip balms, lipsticks, and facial moisturizers.

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