Banana Boat’s parent company recalled batches of sunscreen spray because they contained traces of benzene, a carcinogen, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said. Consumers were asked to stop using the products.
Edgewell Personal Care, owner of Banana Boat, launched the nationwide voluntary product recall on Friday of three lots of SPF 30 hair and scalp sunscreen that contained the carcinogen, according to the FDA.
“Consumers should immediately stop using the affected product and dispose of it appropriately,” the officials said.
The lot codes – found at the bottom of the canisters – of the three recalled lots are 20016AF, 20084BF and 21139AF, with expiration dates in December 2022, February 2023 and April 2024. All recalled aerosols are 6 ounces.
“No other Banana Boat products are affected by this recall and can continue to be used by consumers safely and as intended,” the FDA said.
Benzene is not an ingredient in any Banana Boat product, but it is part of the propellant that sprays sunscreen out of the box, the FDA said. Retailers have been asked to remove products from shelves. The sunscreen had been sold online and in stores.
“Exposure to benzene can occur by inhalation, orally and through the skin,” the administration said, “and it can potentially lead to cancers, including leukemia and blood cancer of the bone marrow and blood disorders, which can be life-threatening”.
Low levels of benzene can be found in products such as plastics and detergents, as well as at gas stations, and in the air through tobacco smoke, motor vehicle exhaust, and emissions. industries, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Benzene causes cells to malfunction and can damage the immune system.
“The severity of benzene poisoning depends on the amount, route, and duration of exposure,” the CDC said, “as well as the age and pre-existing medical condition of the exposed person”.
People are exposed to traces of benzene in their environment. No adverse effects related to Banana Boat sunscreens have been reported, but consumers should contact their health care provider if they experience any concerns, according to the FDA.
“We know you love our products, and we are issuing this recall out of caution,” Banana Boat said on its website.
Similar recalls related to benzene have occurred in the past. Johnson & Johnson issued a recall for some Neutrogena and Aveeno sunscreen sprays last year after tests revealed low levels of benzene.
Banana Boat will offer a refund to purchasers of these products. For more information, consumers can visit Banana Boat’s website or call 1-888-686-3988.