There will always be room for improvement in the sun care industry, which continues to innovate worldwide with better UV filters, measurement techniques and finished formulations. This was reflected at the Florida chapter of the Society of Cosmetic Chemists' 2013 Sunscreen Symposium, which was held Sept. 18-21, 2013, in sunny Orlando, Florida.
The theme for the symposium was "Beyond Broad Spectrum: The Next Horizon of Sun Care," and the event kicked off with a keynote presentation by Perry Romanowski of Brains Publishing on how to maintain a sunscreen brand's online reputation. Romanowski noted an online search is highly important to a brand's reputation, and that people only pay attention to the first page on Google. A Google ranking can be improved by writing a lot about desired terms. He also highlighted the importance of social media, with an emphasis on Facebook. He commented, "If you don't have a presence on Facebook, you don't exist to these people." He pointed out that brands must have a presence on consumer generated media such as blogs and forums in addition to improving their access by mainstream media. He pointed out that the reason the Environmental Working Group has such prominence in mainstream media is because they are easily accessed in a Google search, noting that this must be fixed.
Achim Friedrich from Evonik followed Romanowski with a discussion on eco-friendly emulsifiers to improve sun care products. He began, "All of us are demanding more out of sunscreens. They must be non-greasy, light products that are invisible; however, consumers also want high SPF protection." He presented the benefits of polyglyceryl esters, which can be obtained from coconut, rapeseed, castor or palm oil. They and mild, non-irritating, PEG-free, biodegradable and renewable. They provide a light feel, can be used in low viscous systems and also provide moisturizing properties.
Craig Bonda from HallStar, a well known individual in the sun care industry, then followed with a presentation on avobenzone's diketo tautomer and its quenching. He started, "Avobenzone has been around for about 30 years, and you would think we know everything we need to know about it." Photodegradation depends strongly on the presence of the 1,3 diketo-form of avobenzone in its ground state; therefore, Bonda reviewed its lifetime and its quenching. It was found that ethylhexylmethoxycrylene recovers the ground state of the diketo tautomer, supporting the feasibility of triplet quenching for both tautomers in the presence of the quencher.
The discussion then moved to film formation with a presentation by Charles (Chuck) Jones from Dow Chemical on a film-formation primer for water resistance in emulsion and alcoholic sunscreen systems. He noted that water resistance agents (specifically C30-38 olefin/isopropyl maleate/MA copolymer) change the viscosity and structure of the oil phase in emulsion systems, allowing for enhanced SPF. In an alcoholic system, styrene/acrylates copolymer created a homogenous gel structure. This is discussed in his 2005 article in Cosmetics & Toiletries, "Film-Formers Enhance Resistance and SPF in Sun Care Products."