News of the Massachusetts man who caught fire after applying aerosol sunscreen then walking over to his grill has raised questions about whether these sprays are safe. But clinical professor of dermatology at New York University Dr. Darrell Rigel cautions against jumping to conclusions about sunscreen safety.
Dr. Rigel explained:
“Most of the sunscreen sprays have some kind of alcohol in them and the alcohol vapors are probably what caused the fire.”
According to Dr. Rigel, the accident in which the man sustained second degree burns to his back, chest, and ear could have been avoided had the man waited two minutes before walking over to the grill – enough time for the alcohol droplets on his skin to dry and for the vapors to dissipate. If precautions are taken around flames, Dr. Rigel said:
“People shouldn’t be worried that if they spray sunscreen on they’re going to explode.”
Dr. Rigel is a board certified dermatologist in New York City with 30 years’ experience. To learn more about his background and how his patients have rated him, visit Dr. Rigel’s Vitals profile.