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Solar creams: the importance of differentiating between expiration and time elapsed once opened – Pharmacist Post – Todo Dermo

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Is it good to use leftover sunscreen last year? Do these products expire? How should we use to protect skin from the sun? These are some of the questions that pharmacists are behind the counter. To resolve them , TodoDermo collects tips for proper use of sunscreens, drawn up by José Carlos Moreno, the Spanish Academy of Dermatology and Venereology (AEDV).

“The photoprotective do not require special storage conditions but, once opened, should be used in that season as they lose effectiveness from one year to another,” Moreno says. On its expiry, the expert notes that “any chemical compound has a period of effectiveness, but like any medication, spent time undergoes decomposition step in losing effectiveness.”


In his view, it is important to differentiate between the expiration date and time elapsed after opening (PAO). Thus, he says that “the first is the maximum period that can be used effectively a product, is open or not. Instead, the PAO is the period in which the photoresist loses utility from the moment it opens. After this time it is that the product is harmful, but loses effectiveness. “

If a user goes to the pharmacy because she inadvertently used a sunscreen expired , Moreno warns: “Typically , lost properties, but does not harm the skin except those derived from inadequate sun protection”. Therefore advised to “discard its use and not use it more often to get the same effectiveness.”


Another common question among patients is what texture (cream, gel, spray or oil) protects more skin. According to the dermatologist, this is not a factor that determines the action or product shelf life , but it “depends on the excipient used in its manufacture.” In this regard, it stresses that “we must take special care when packaging signs of oxidation are observed: changes in color, smell and consistency.”

From the AEDV recall that, although the use of sunscreen increases with the arrival of good weather, these recommendations should be implemented throughout the year in order to protect the skin and prevent skin problems.

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