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Anti-sunscreen messages on corporate packaging? Yup, it’s true!

Posted on 21 March 2017

I’m not sure about you, but I typically don’t turn to my shopping bags for medical advice – and perhaps that is why I am just learning about the statement on Lululemon’s bags: 

“Sunscreen absorbed into the skin might be worse for you than sunshine.”

Say what?!

Sunscreen absorbed into the skin might be worse for you than sunshine


It really does say this!

I quickly raced around the house trying to find my Lululemon bag to see this for myself (I was given a pair of their admittedly ultra-comfy yoga pants whilst I was pregnant and had been using the packaging to carry bits-and-bobs for the past couple of years)… yup, it’s there.  It really does say this!

And that's not the worst part.

Do you want to know what else they’ve done?  In a 2011 community blog post, Lululemon suggested:

 “that getting a sunburn is your body's way of telling you you've had enough, and putting on sunscreen "messes" with your body's natural defences against the sun”. 

You will not be surprised to learn that the blog post has since been removed!

This is newsworthy, right?

Surely these anti-sunscreen messages would have had to have made some ripples in the news and media. Surely?

And a Goggle search revealed that it did make the news. It made the news in July 2014 – 2.5 years ago.

So why, this week, 2.5 years after the fact, is my friend Susan (hello Susan!) receiving her latest season yoga pants in packaging that contains this anti-sunscreen message?  A message that Lululemon themselves admitted "is not research-based".

Lululemon have updated their manifesto.

The good news is that Lululemon have in fact updated their “manifesto” and removed their anti-sunscreen message, replacing it with much safer advice, such as: “sweat once a day to regenerate your skin” and “live near the ocean and inhale the pure salt ait that flows over the water”   …. I wonder how long it will take for this new manifesto packaging to reach Australia?

Do not turn to nylon bags for health advice.

The other good news is that, whilst the packaging downplays the importance of sunscreen, I am sure that women do not turn to nylon bags for health advice – otherwise this would have been a much MUCH bigger story in Australia, both now and 2.5 years ago… right? 


All the same, I think I’ll shop elsewhere for my next pair of yoga pants.

Annaliese xo


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