You may know or even be someone that heard that research from years ago that linked skin cancer to sunscreen. However this research left some massive loop holes in it’s report. It’s all perfectly explained in this social media post (ok yeah, I know, don’t believe things you read on social media).
It starts off casually enough when a dude posted a beach picture captioned “This is my smug ‘I’m definitely not going to get sunburned today’ look. Flash forward to 3 hours later and I had the chills from being so burned. Wear SPF, kids.”
Pretty innocent right? Unfortunately their friend wanted to point out that “SPF causes cancer”. Until now no one was aware that “Sun Protection Factor” is actually a unit of measurement which causes cancer.
The results did show those who used sunscreen were more likely to develop melanoma, but there was a massive caveat left out
“Well that’s empirically not true” the original poster responds.
“Do some research of your own before you accuse people of not speaking the truth please. Just trying to inform. Thanks.” the person who has a problem with SPF quickly posted back.
That’s when things get truly interesting and the original poster leaves a wall of text which gets to the bottom of the entire debate and only briefly pausing on the fact they used SPF as a shorthand for sunscreen. Pretty gentlemanly there to be honest.
“The claim that more people who use sunscreen develop melanoma is based on a study that tracked sun exposure and sunscreen use in nearly 1500 people over a span of two years. The results did show those who used sunscreen were more likely to develop melanoma, but there was a massive caveat left out: The median sun protection factor (SPF) was 6 (the CDC recommends SPF 15 or higher) and those who used sunscreen the most spent considerably more time in the sun than those who rarely use sunscreen.”
They go on to list other myths and findings, you can read them in the image above.
Next time this argument comes up, send them to this post.