Sunscreens are safe
Consumers can be assured that sunscreens sold in New Zealand are safe and follow rigorous and enforceable regulation, says Cosmetics New Zealand Executive Director Garth Wylie.
Cosmetics New Zealand believe that sunscreens available in New Zealand are effective when used as directed and when correctly tested to the joint standard AS/NZS 2604:2012, which follows the international standards organisation standard ISO 24444.
The results of sunscreen testing issued by Consumer NZ are deeply concerning and we urge the organisation to share the methodology used in sampling and the supply to the testing laboratory in Australia, so we can understand these claims and work together to resolve any inconsistencies.
"We need to understand that Consumer NZ and their testing agencies are following the same rigor and procedures that is required by our members, to ensure that the testing is consistent and accurate," said Mr Wyllie.
Executive Director Garth Wyllie said that "providing the highest quality and most efficacious sunscreen formulas so consumers stay safe in the sun, is a responsibility our members take extremely seriously. This commitment is reflected with our members’ recent decision to step in and fund the continuous improvement required for sunscreen standards in New Zealand in the absence of Government funding for the joint standard.
"It is important that sunscreen standards in New Zealand reflect the most updated international testing methods, so continuous improvement to the standard is vital.
"The industry supported the joint standard becoming mandatory under the Cosmetic Products Group Standard where sunscreens are currently regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency.
"While we support that agency also enforcing the AS/NZS 2604:2012 standard for primary sunscreens it should be noted that the current standard and its upgrade would not exist if Cosmetics New Zealand had not provided the funding to retain it," said Mr Wyllie
"Cosmetics New Zealand believes that retaining the joint standard is essential as it ensures that sunscreen products available in New Zealand will continue to be safe and appropriate to the New Zealand environment and conditions, as they are in Australia."
Consumers are reminded that sunscreens should always be applied when outdoors as well as engaging in general sun-safe practices including generous product application and regular re-application avoiding peak sun exposure and wearing protective hat and clothing."
Mr Wyllie said, "it was deeply disappointing that the government had chosen not to fund this joint standard and that as a responsible industry body Cosmetics New Zealand felt the need to step up and provide the funding itself."