Does Oral Sunscreen Actually Work? Here's What the Experts Say

Does Oral Sunscreen Actually Work? Here’s What the Experts Say

If there’s one thing every skincare expert can agree on, it’s the importance of slapping on some SPF before you head outside (or even walk by a window). Now, it’s easier than ever to protect your skin from harmful ultraviolet rays thanks to a relatively new product: oral sunscreen. Oral sunscreens, which typically come in pill form, aren’t meant to be a complete substitute for the topical version, but they do make a nice addition to your routine. We repeat: DO NOT USE THESE INSTEAD OF TOPICAL SUNSCREEN.

“Oral sunscreen agents are typically antioxidants called polypodium leucotomos,” said board-certified dermatologist and ethnic skin expert Dr. William Kwan. “They may be helpful by increasing the time it takes for a person to burn when exposed to ultraviolet rays.”

Dr. Carolyn Jacob, of Chicago Dermatology, is in complete agreement with Dr. Kwan, telling us, “Studies have shown that they can reduce sunburn cells (or the capacity for the sun to damage the skin cells).”

Curious? We’ve rounded up a few options to try in addition to your regular SPF.

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