DNA-Repairing Sunscreens Can Actually Work

The sun’s ultraviolet radiation is harmful to our skin cells because it damages our DNA. This is why sun exposure can cause cancer and why sunscreen is so important (even beyond its ability to prevent sunburn). There are sunscreens out there that claim they can help your skin repair that damage – and it turns out they can (can!) Work.

Robbie Gonzalez reports that certain animals and bacteria produce DNA repair enzymes that we don’t have . Some of them are activated by sunlight, and preliminary studies show that they can actually be absorbed by human skin and protect DNA from radiation, as advertised.

But there are a couple of problems. First, we only have a few laboratory tests left to do, not solid evidence . Another reason is that these enzymes have not gone through the FDA approval process and are not widely available.

But the biggest problem is that they are expensive. Gonzalez discovered they were made by Estée Lauder and sold to other cosmetics companies looking to make DNA-repairing sunscreens as an expensive niche product. Three to four ounces will cost you $ 45 to $ 75 depending on the brand. That’s enough for maybe a couple of days of responsible use of sunscreen. So don’t expect these formulas to replace your regular sunscreen anytime soon.


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