Can Your Sunscreen Set You on Fire?


Last year Banana Boat’s parent company, Energizer Holdings, recalled 23 of its products after five people caught on fire after using Banana Boat aerosol sunscreen and coming into contact with sparks or flames, such as from a barbeque grill. With spring break and beach season quickly approaching, customers should learn about aerosol sunscreen products before using them this year.

Banana Burnt is a consumer safety website that was launched to alert customers to the risks associated with aerosol sunscreen products, and to keep a watchful eye over Banana Boat and its sunscreen products as we put the winter months behind us and people start spending time out in the sun. There is no evidence that Banana Boat products that are currently on the market are unsafe.

“Banana Boat’s recall last year was too late for the Brett Sigworth, Mary Shoulders, and the other burn victims. Customers should learn about the potential risks before using aerosol sunscreen products,” said Ian Mikusko who maintains the Banana Burnt website for UNITE HERE.

The recalled products are off of the market this year. After news coverage of two serious burn incidents associated with Banana Boat products, Energizer Holdings, which owns Banana Boat, pulled 23 of its products. The company stated that the issue stemmed from spray valves that dispensed a quantity that took longer than normal to dry on the skin. And according to a company press release about the recalled products: “If a consumer comes into contact with a flame or spark prior to complete drying of the product on the skin, there is a potential for the product to ignite.”

Most or all aerosol sunscreen products, including Banana Boat products, are marked flammable because they contain alcohol.

Visit Banana Burnt for videos, burn incident reports, news accounts and analysis. Banana Burnt is maintained by UNITE HERE.