DOH warns consumers of recalled sunscreen products

The state Department of Health Tuesday alerted residents and visitors that Johnson &Johnson Consumer Inc. is voluntarily recalling all lots of five Neutrogena and Aveeno aerosol sunscreen product lines.

Company testing identified low levels of benzene in some samples of the products. Consumers are advised to stop using the affected products and discard or return them.

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The recalled products are spray-on sunscreens, specifically:

• Neutrogena Beach Defense aerosol sunscreen,

• Neutrogena Cool Dry Sport aerosol sunscreen,

• Neutrogena Invisible Daily defense aerosol sunscreen,

• Neutrogena Ultra Sheer aerosol sunscreen, and

• Aveeno Protect + Refresh aerosol sunscreen.

The recalled sunscreens are packaged in aerosol cans and were distributed nationwide, including Hawaii, through a variety of retailers. Three of the affected sunscreens contain oxybenzone and/or octinoxate, ingredients banned from sale or distribution in Hawaii under Section 11-342D-21, Hawaii Revised Statutes, that went into effect in January.

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Benzene, the chemical found in the affected sunscreens, is common in the environment including in motor vehicle exhaust and cigarette smoke, and is known to cause cancer in humans. Benzene is not an ingredient in sunscreen products and the levels of benzene found in the recalled products was low. Based on current information, daily exposure to benzene in these sunscreen products would not be expected to cause adverse health consequences. However, these products are being recalled to prevent further exposure. JJCI is investigating the possible cause of contamination that led to the presence of benzene in their products.

Consumers may contact the JJCI Consumer Care Center 24/7 with questions or to request a refund by calling 1-800-458-1673. Consumers should contact their physician or healthcare provider if they have any questions, concerns or have experienced any problems related to using these aerosol sunscreen products. JJCI is also notifying its distributors and retailers by letter and is arranging for returns of all recalled products.