by ecorazzicontributor
Categories: People
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Supermodel Gisele Bundchen is in hot water with cancer experts after calling sunscreen a “poison.”

The environmentally aware beauty has actively promoted healthy living through her eco cartoon series and organic skincare line, but she recently claimed that she refuses to wear any sunscreen products because of the chemicals used to block the sun’s harmful rays.

“I cannot put this poison on my skin,” the 30-year-old stated. “I do not use anything synthetic.”

According to the Daily Mail, Bundchen explained that to avoid skin damage she only exposes herself to the sun before 8 a.m. when, according to her, the rays are at their weakest.

Obviously, these comments have angered cancer experts like Dolival Loao, the head of dermatology at Brazil’s National Cancer Institute, who said, “Sunscreen prevents damage to the skin and is of fundamental importance for the prevention of cancer.”

And Jessica Harris of Cancer research UK added, “Sunscreens are fully tested before they can be sold and are not harmful to the skin.”

These comments are a problem specifically because Bundchen is trying to make herself into an eco role model, so her opinions actually do have the power to influence decisions that people make. And as someone with a history of skin cancer in their family, I have made it a point to wear sunscreen every day. That being said, I do wear natural mineral brands, and there are great options out there for those of you who are looking.

In fact, National Geographic compiled a fantastic green guide to help make shopping the eco-friendly way easy (check it out) and Saffron Rouge also has a great list of products!

Also, it seems that Bundchen didn’t always feel so sure about the harm that sunscreen causes, as she once served as a spokesperson for Nivea Sun, check out her commercial below.

  • April Sun

    Unfortunately Gisele is right: NIH panel links Vitamin A in sunscreen to skin tumors

  • Jenny

    I did a thorough check of “mainstream” sunscreen labels and their list of ingredients recently as part of my training as a pharmacist and I’m afraid I’ll have to agree with her, at least partially. Every person with basic knowledge of chemistry and toxicology can realise most of them contain chemicals that are far from safe. The first coming to mind is titanium dioxide, which in a recently published list of the 20 most carcinogenic substances (environmental, from food, tobacco, etc, all of the known so far) was in the 4th place, up there with lead and hexavaliant chromium! Imagine putting that to your own skin every day for months! And it’s not only sunscreens; many make-up products contain it as well.
    That said, I do think we have to find ways to protect ourselves from the sun and its harmful effects so I don’t know if not wearing any sun protection is that advisable – the damage sun can cause to the skin and our DNA is proven beyond doubt. We just need to make informed choices. I’m still looking for a titanium doixide-free sunscreen; I hope I find one before the summer comes!

  • Lynn

    Whilst I’m not sure it’s toxic to humans sunscreen products do look somewhat poisonous to coral –

    • herwin

      i was going to say something similar. :-)

      • Eva @ Four Leaf Clover

        It looks as though we’ve all been fairly well-informed. : )

  • Eva @ Four Leaf Clover

    I agree with her. I haven’t worn sunscreen in years and I don’t plan on wearing it ever again (not the big brand, chemical kinds anyway). I once read an article about how marine life such as coral has been severely damaged due to humans wearing sunscreen in the area. If it’s poisoning the oceans so much, I’m afraid to see the impact on the individuals wearing it and then having it absorbed into their skin and body. I think this is what I read on the issue:

  • herwin

    GOOD NEWS !!!

    There is no need to put chemical (and dubieus) sunscreens on our skins.

    to protect ourself from too intense sunrays we (well, actually this is a girls-only solution..) can simply use a small and stylish umbrella.

    UV protection umbrellas are common (and fashionable) in some Asian countries like Japan.

  • krissy

    Giselle’s right. Smell it. That toxic scent just screams toxic cancer. I’ll take my chances with the sun remember the sun provides you with Vitamin A which PREVENTS cancer. Let everyone else be pale sprayed with bronzer or nuked in a tanning bed I prefer the real deal.

  • LittleMe

    Some of us have ridiculously pale and sensitive skin (as well as a family history of skin cancer) so don’t have the luxury of deciding to avoid using sunscreen altogether.

  • Pingback: Gisele Bundchen Backpedals, Says Sunscreen Not A Poison After All | :: the latest in green gossip()

  • Linda

    krissy it’s vitamin D. I think with the right diet of lots of berries, microalgae like spirulina and basically antioxidants, your body will produce its own natural sunscreen. I mean, we are born this way, not with a bottle of banana boat in hand!

    I read that from here

    not sure about the credibility, but it makes sense.

  • ibika

    well its not bizarre..she is stating a fact..that to many people it is a poison.. most sunscreems are produced by maninstream companies in the huge petrochemical industry..they product the product from toxic ingredients using toxic processes.
    agreed use an umbrella, stay out of the sun from 10am till 4 pm and use Natural based sunscreens produced by numerous small scale producers.. use google..or contact
    they will get something for you.