Daily sunscreen use slows skin aging

July 8, 2013

Using sunscreen daily can slow the signs of skin aging in middle-aged adults, recent research suggests.

 

Using sunscreen daily can slow the signs of skin aging in middle-aged adults, recent research suggests.

Investigators with the University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia, and colleagues randomized 903 adults under age 55 to one of four groups: daily use of broad-spectrum sunscreen with 30 mg of beta-carotene, daily use of sunscreen with placebo, discretionary sunscreen use and 30 mg of beta-carotene, and discretionary sunscreen use and placebo. Researchers assessed skin aging by changes in microtopography.

After four and a half years of sunscreen use, there was no detectable increase in skin aging observed in the group that used sun protection daily. Signs of skin aging was 24 percent less from baseline to the end of the trial in the daily sunscreen group compared to the discretionary sunscreen group, according to the study.

The use of beta-carotene supplements had no overall effect on skin aging, researchers found, but contrasting associations were noted in subgroups with different severity of aging at baseline. Investigators stated that more study of beta-carotene and its effects on skin aging would be required to “definitively exclude potential benefit or potential harm.”

The study was published June 4 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

 

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