Efficient UV Filter Solubilizers Prevent Recrystallization Favoring Accurate and Safe Sun Protection

Ivan D. Da Silva Souza, Emma Berkowitz, John D. Chea, Nicholas McBride, Kayla Sweet, Daniel Torri, Rocco V. Burgo, Mariano J. Savelski, Joseph F. Stanzione

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Sun protection is a global concern, and maximizing sunscreen stability and efficacy depends partially on the prevention of UV filters recrystallization. We aimed to study the efficacy of hydrophobic solubilizers in preventing the recrystallization of solid hydrophobic UV filters in predissolutions, sunscreen formulations, and during simulated human use. Recrystallization of UV filters induced by ultrasonication, temperature variation, or simulated human application was analyzed by different methods. Maximum solubility of UV filters in solubilizers was determined. Surprisingly, the best solubilizer was not necessarily the best solvent to prevent recrystallization, suggesting there are different forces controlling these phenomena. Hydrophobic solubilizers tend to perform better than ethanol in predissolutions, but the presence of other components in final products may change their performance. Results suggest that some UV filters tend to form liquid clusters, which may behave as crystals and affect the desired even distribution of UV filters on the skin. UV filters were also found to respond differently to Hansen Solubility Parameters. Scanning electron microscopy supports the fact that recrystallization upon sunscreen application is an issue to be tested during development. A timesaving method to predict recrystallization of UV filters in clear systems was developed and is presented as a tool to enhance the efficacy of sunscreens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)40411-40423
Number of pages13
JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
Issue number47
StatePublished - Nov 28 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Materials Science


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