UV warning band FAQ for Irreversible Photochromic

1) Why is UV radiation dangerous to humans?
The level of UV radiation that reaches earth has been increasing steadily over the last two decades due to the depletion of the ozone layer. In some parts of the world, the UV radiation level has increased by 50-100%. The situation will only get worse in the next 20 years or so. Recent medical statistics indicate that the incidence of skin cancer (melanoma and non-melanoma), has closely tracked rising UV radiation for the last thirty years. The sun’s UV radiation cause premature aging of the skin and other skin problems, cataracts and eye damage, and Immune system suppression.

2) What are the differences between the skin types?
People vary by hair color, skin color, eye type and reaction to exposure.
There are six recognized skin types :

  1. Red blond hair, blue-green eyes, very light skin,
    mostly burns, does not tan.
  2. Light-medium hair, eyes skin,
    usually burns, seldom tans
  3. Medium hair, medium to dark eyes, medium to olive skin
    moderately burns, lightly tans
  4. Dark hair, dark eyes, dark olive to light brown skin,
    burns mildly, moderate brown,
  5. Dark hair, eyes and skin
    seldom burns, dark brown.
  6. Dark hair, eyes and very dark skin,
    insensitive, does not burn

3) Why do we need personal warning Band?
The effective UV radiation level depends on altitude, latitude, season, air pollution, clouds, reflection (water, sand and snow reflect UV rays), therefore it is very difficult to know the UV radiation levels for specific location and daytime. Sunscreens are losing their efficiency, due to dissipation through perspiration, mechanical friction and absorption in the skin. People need to have an indication when to re-apply the lotion. The definition of SPF (sun protection factor) that appear on the sunscreen bottles, can be misleading, since the tests that determine the sunscreen SPF are poor simulation of the real conditions under which the sunscreen should operate, therefore the SPF theoretical protection time cannot be trusted.

4) What do the experts say about the warning band?
Dr. Perry Robins, founder and president of The American Skin Cancer Foundation. “We welcome new developments such as the products that could help alert people to the importance of protecting themselves from the damaging rays of the sun.”

5) Has the warning band effectiveness tested?
Clinical Tests were freeform by tests center of the Australian skin cancer foundation.
In these tests volunteers with different skin types using sunscreen were kept on the beach during summer day, until the color of the band changed. The next day they were checked for sunburn, of which none was found.

6) What band type is commercially available?
The warning bands are available in the form of easy to wear disposable wristbands.

The bands are manufacture in one sensitivity level for:
1.    Adults with Light to medium skin (skin types no.1-3)
2.    Children with any skin type

7) How does the band work?
Special patented photochromic dyes are imbedded in the band that change colors when exposed to the UV radiation of the sun.  This is the same damaging UV radiation for which we use sunscreen to protect our skin when we go out into the sun.  The band goes from pink (fresh from the package) to dark purple (activated, when first exposed to the sun for five minutes), to light purple (when it is time to reapply sunscreen), to pale yellow/white (when it is time to get out of sun for the day!)

8) Why do I apply sunscreen to the band?
By putting lotion sunscreen on the band, you are mimicking the protection the sunscreen is giving your body.  There is no more guessing on how effective the sunscreen is.  The band color changes will tell you.

9) When do I put sunscreen on the band?
Put the band on before you put on sunscreen so the adhesive on the band sticks to the band.  Apply sunscreen on the band when you first apply Sunscreen on to the skin, since the band mimics your skin.  It is important to put the sunscreen on before you go into the sun for your best protection!  The second application of sunscreen should be applied to the body and band after the band turns color from dark purple to light purple (lavender).  When the band turns yellow or white, it is recommended to get out of the sun or cover up the sun-exposed skin from the sun.

10) How long will it take before the colors change?
It all depends!  It depends on how much UV radiation you are getting, but it will generally turn light purple in 1-2 hours.  Sunny, summer days, between 10AM and 4PM are the maximum times for UV exposure.  If you are in the shade, you will get less radiation.  The band will measure wherever you go.  In fact, if you go inside where there is no UV radiation, the color progression stops, however, it has “memory”, and when you go back outside, the band continues to measure from where it left off.

11) Can I continually reapply sunscreen all day to protect myself?  When do I need to get out of the sun?
Please follow the directions on the bottle of Sunscreen that you are using.  Our UV Sunscreen band will properly measure your maximum exposure for the day based on the SPF level of your sunscreen. It is important to understand that sunscreen does NOT block all UV radiation, and no matter how much sunscreen you use there is a limit to how much time you should spend in the sun.  Once the band turn pale yellow to white (to match the repeated pattern printed on the band), it is recommended to get out of the sun or cover up!

12) Can the band be used in water or salt water?
Our Sunscreen Bands work in pool water or salt water at the beach.  What matters is the sunscreen!  Sunscreen can wash off your body in the water.  If that happens, it will also wash off the band.  The band will give you an accurate reading based on the sunscreen you are using and how you are using it.  Certainly, wear the band in the water!

13) Can I wear the band for more than one day?
No.  The band is designed to work once per day.  However, the band will work for a full day.  It has a memory and will measure the UV radiation throughout the day both inside and outside.  Do not use a partly used band the next day. The band does not measure time, only exposure to the sun. Once the day is over, dispose or recycle (plastic code 5) the band.

14) What if I do NOT put sunscreen on the band?
This is not recommended since the band is calibrated to work with SPF 15 and above. It is not advised to go outside in intense sun for more than 15 minutes in the summer without sunscreen. Without sunscreen, the band’s color progression will move much more quickly, and could give a false reading.

15) What kind of sunscreen will work with the bands?
The band is calibrated to work with any sunscreen with an SPF 15 or higher.  Any kind of sunscreen is fine to use, including lotions, creams, or sprays.  What is important is that you properly cover your entire sun-exposed skin and the band with sunscreen for best protection.

16) What more should I know about spending time in the sun?
We recommend the following sites regarding sunscreen use and spending safe time in the sun: The Skin Cancer Foundation: www.skincancer.org, The U.S. Food and Drug Administration: www.fda.gov/sunscreen, The American Melanoma Foundation: www.melanomafoundation.org/prevention/facts.htm  The U.S. Environmental Protection Association: www.epa.gov/sunwise