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Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane

Also-called-like-this: Avobenzone
What-it-does: sunscreen


The famous Avobenzone. It is a special snowflake as it is the only globally available chemical sunscreen agent that provides proper UVA protection (in the US, new generation sunscreen agents are not approved because of impossible FDA regulations). It is the global gold standard of UVA protection and is the most used UVA sunscreen in the world. 

It gives very good protection across the whole UVA range (310-400 nm that is both UVA1 and UVA2) with a peak protection at 360 nm. The problem with it, though, is that it is not photostable and degrades in the sunlight. Wikipedia says that avobenzone loses 36% of its UV-absorption capacity after just one hour of sunlight (yep, this is one of the reasons why sunscreens have to be reapplied after a few hours).

The cosmetic's industry is trying to solve the problem by combining avobenzone with other UV filters that enhance its stability (like octocrylene, Tinosorb S or Ensulizole) or by encapsulating it and while both solutions help, neither is perfect. Interestingly, the combination of avobenzone with mineral sunscreens (that is titanium dioxide and zinc oxide) is not a good idea. In the US, it is flat out prohibited as avobenzone becomes unstable when combined with mineral sunscreens.

As for safety, avobenzone has a pretty good safety profile. It counts as non-irritating, and unlike some other chemical sunscreens, it shows no estrogenic effect. The maximum concentration of avobenzone permitted is 5% in the EU and 3% in the US.

Show me some proof

  • Photochem Photobiol. 2001 Sep;74(3):401-6., Photostabilization of butyl methoxydibenzoylmethane (Avobenzone) and ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate by bis-ethylhexyloxyphenol methoxyphenyl triazine (Tinosorb S), a new UV broadband filter.
  • Schlumpf, Margret, et al. "In vitro and in vivo estrogenicity of UV screens." Environmental health perspectives 109.3 (2001): 239.

Products with a known amount of Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane

Other products with Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane

Aesop Protective Body Lotion SPF 50 Ahava Time To Hydrate Essential Moisturizing Lotion Broad Spectrum SPF15 Alba Botanica Hawaiian Island Vibe Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50 Alba Botanica Hawaiian Spray Sunscreen Alba Botanica Hawaiian Sunscreen Alba Botanica Sensitive Sheer Shield Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 45 Alba Botanica Sensitive Sunscreen Spf 50 Alba Botanica Soothing Sunscreen Alba Botanica Sport Sunscreen 45 Spf Alba Botanica Very Emollient Kids Sunscreen Aloe Up Sport SPF 50 Sunscreen Lotion Alpha-H Daily Essential Moisturiser Anthony Day Cream Spf 30 Apex Sunblock-Oc 45 Oil Control Matte Gel ApotheCARE Essentials Phytodefend Protecting Day Lotion - SPF 30 Aquaphor Lip Repair Stick + Sunscreen Artistry Skin Nutrition™ Renwing Reactivation Day Cream SPF 30 Atoma Broad Spectrum Sunscreen Lotion Spf 50 Baby Australian Gold Australian Gold Sunscreen Lotion with Kona Coffee Infused Bronzer SPF 50 Australian Gold Botanical SPF 50 Natural Spray Sunscreen Australian Gold Face Guard Sunscreen Stick SPF 50 Australian Gold Little Joey Sunscreen Lotion Spf 50 Australian Gold Plant Based Face Lotion SPF 50 Australian Gold Plant Based Lotion SPF 70 Australian Gold Plant Based SPF 30 Lotion Australian Gold SPF 50 Lotion Ultimate Hydration Australian Gold Xtreme Sport Spf50 Spray Gel Aveeno Absolutely Ageless Daily Moisturizer Spf 30 Aveeno Clear Complexion Sheer Daily Moisturizer Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Face Moisturizer For Even Skin Tone, Spf 15 Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Facial Moisturizer With Broad Spectrum Spf 30 Aveeno Positively Radiant Sheer Daily Moisturizer Sunscreen Broad Spectrum Spf 30 Aveeno Protect + Hydrate Sunscreen 50 For Face Aveeno Protect + Hydrate Sunscreen Broad Spectrum Body Lotion Spf 60 Aveeno Protect + Hydrate Sunscreen Broad Spectrum Face Lotion SPF 60 Aveeno Protect + Hydrate Sunscreen Face Lotion - SPF 60 Aveeno Protect + Hydrate Sunscreen Lotion Spf 70 Aveeno Ultra-calming Daily Moisturizer Sunscreen SPF 15 Azha Whitening Cream SPF 20 B&B DERMA Lunar Gel Sunscreen BLK/OPL Even True Nutritive Skin Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 15 Banana Boat Baby Sunscreen Stick 50+ Banana Boat Dry Balance Lotion Spf50 Banana Boat Light As Air Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50 Banana Boat Lip Balm SPF 50 Banana Boat Protection And Vitamins Banana Boat Sport Cool Zone Clear Spray Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 50 Banana Boat Sport Performance Banana Boat Sport Performance Sunscreen Lotion Spf 30 Banana Boat Sport SPF 50 Sunscreen Lip Balm