Home HealthTopics Health Centers Reference Library Research
Join us on Facebook Join us on Facebook Share on Facebook

Skin Care and Diseases

Sunscreen effectiveness



I have been led to believe that suncreen will become less effective if left in a hot space e.g. a car in the summer for extended period of times. Is this true or will the sunscreen remain effective through the expiration period regardless of storage conditions?


Yes, subjecting sunscreens to extremes of temperature is destructive of the chemicals, and certainly long periods in a hot car are not good because this causes deterioration of the product....not just of the active chemical but of the vehicle.  I would urge you to get fresh material.  Check the expiration date.  The expiration date is the date through which the material can be expected to function at 100% of its design and does assume a non-freezing and non-hyperthermic environment.  If in doubt, please replace the material for use for maximum effectiveness.


For more information:

Go to the Skin Care and Diseases health topic, where you can:

Response by:

Charles L Heaton, MD
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati