Consumers encouraged to buy, apply more sunscreen

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Consumers encouraged to buy, apply more sunscreen

After years of ignoring warnings that sun exposure poses a health risk and hastens aging, consumers are starting to see the light. In fact, overall category sales rose 6.7% for the 52-week period ended May 14 across multi-outlets, according to IRI. Lotions and oils advanced almost 7%, and sunscreens and bug repellants jumped 3.5%.

But retailers and marketers said much more needs to be done. A recent Marist Institute for Public Opinion Poll said only 1-in-10 people apply sunscreen regularly.

“We are seeing cases of melanoma on the rise, but [sun care protection] penetration is flat. Only 50% of households are buying sunscreen, so there’s plenty of head space to get people not currently using [to start] — or those using to reapply more frequently …,” said Lisa Perez, director of marketing for Coppertone.

That sentiment is reflected at Edgewell, makers of Banana Boat and Hawaiian Tropic. WIth the company’s “1,2,3” marketing initiative. The first step, or “1,” encourages application of 1 oz. — or a golf ball-sized amount — of sunscreen for each application; “2” is to remind users to reapply every two hours; and “3” is to “love your sun scene.”

Retailers and suppliers are doing more to encourage consumers to buy and apply more often. CVS announced it was removing all sun care products with SPF lower than 15 from shelves, and added more than 30 new SPF-plus-broad-spectrum products. CVS Pharmacy and Johnson & Johnson partnered with the American Cancer Society to create exclusive content for in-store signage, and the CVS Pharmacy circular, while CVS Pharmacy beauty consultants will share information and tips on the importance of proper sun care and skin health with customers. And from June 18 to 25, Johnson & Johnson donated $1 to the American Cancer Society for every Neutrogena or Aveeno product with SPF 15 or higher purchased.

Target recently added Pacifica Suncare, a line of sunscreens, face shades, bronzers and balms that retail for less than $16. The line is 100% vegan, free of animal ingredients and not tested on animals.

To help demystify sun care, Bayer, the maker of Coppertone, commissioned an independent assessment from AccountAbility to offer consumers more confidence when choosing a sunscreen. “Consumers are receiving information about sun protection from a variety of often contradictory sources. … They want assurance that product performance claims are based on legitimate scientific testing,” said Michael Tune, VP of Bayer’s personal care development center. “As a leader in the U.S. sun care industry, we wanted to utilize our long-standing leadership to meet the changing expectations of consumers by voluntarily conducting — and sharing — this independent assurance assessment.”

Furthermore, Coppertone took some direction from consumers in developing its Clearly Sheer Whipped Sunscreen in SPF 30 and 50, as well as an SPF 50 version of Water Babies. And Coppertone’s new social media campaign, #ProtectMy, encourages people to use the hashtag to show how they use sunscreen. Coppertone will feature some of the content on its social platforms.

Edgewell is using social media to help highlight their new Hawaiian Tropic products. The Silk Hydration Weightless line features breathable, clear sprays in SPF 15 and SPF 30, as well as an SPF 30 face lotion offering 12 hours of hydration without clogging pores, the company said. Edgewell is working with YouTube personalities Bethany Mota, Megan Nicole and Claudia Sulewski on videos showing how they use the products. Also new from Edgewell are Banana Boat Dry Balance Sunscreen Lotion and Clear UltraMist, and Banana Boat Kids Sport Sunscreen Lotion and Lotion Spray with PowerStay Technology.