Sunscreen is an important element when enjoying a lot of time in the sun, but not when the sunscreen itself has the potential of causing problems. That's the situation facing Johnson & Johnson and sunscreen users in the summer of 2021.

Here are some of the things you'll need to know to decide how to deal with the situation for yourself and your family.

What brands of sunscreen have been recalled?

As with many large companies, Johnson & Johnson manufactures sunscreens that are sold under several brand names. The brands involved in this voluntary recall are:

Neutrogena Beach Defense

Neutrogena Cool Dry Sport

Neutrogena Invisible Daily Defense

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer

Aveeno Protect and Refresh.


Additionally, Valisure is petitioning the FDA to issue a recall on the following products.

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Weightless Sunscreen Spray, SPF 70 and SPF 100+

Neutrogena Beach Defense Oil-Free Body Sunscreen Spray, SPF 100

Fruit of the Earth Aloe Vera Gel

Banana Boat Kids Max Protect & Play Sunscreen C-Spray, SPF 100

EltaMD UV Aero Broad-Spectrum Fully-Body Sunscreen Spray, SPF 45

Sun Bum Cool Down Gel

Raw Elements Eco Formula Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 30

CVS Health After-sun Aloe Vera Soothing Spray

Goodsense Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 30

Does this recall include both aerosol and lotion sunscreens?

No. This voluntary recall only includes the aerosol applied sunscreens sold under the brands listed above. The lotion versions of any of these sunscreens is not included in this recall.

travnikovstudio / ThinkStock

What should I do if I have any of these sunscreens at home?

If you have any of these aerosol products at home Johnson & Johnson suggests that you dispose of them and contact the company for a refund.

What is the problem with these sunscreens?

According to an article on, nobody has a definitive answer to exactly how it happened but the chemical benzene is present in the sunscreens listed. Interestingly, the benzene appears to be prevalent in some production lots much more than others. In fact tests within the same brand showed some samples to contain high levels of benzene while others from the same brand showed almost none.

Why is benzene a problem?

Benzene is an industrial chemical often found in crude oil and cigarette smoke, as well as in the production of some plastics and pesticides. It is a known carcinogen and can cause harm with long-term exposure. Long-term exposure is defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as more than one year.

Again, the voluntary recall was initiated by Johnson & Johnson, if you have any of the products listed you are encouraged to dispose of them before using them any more.

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