"Ingredients used in cosmetics are generally harmless by themselves but when exposed to sunlight, they get sensitised and show phototoxicity," said Rajendra Kumar Hans of the photobiology division at ITRC.
Consumers are being advised to avoid sunlight if they have applied lipsticks and creams, after a study of ten different lipsticks and eight body lotions was carried out.
Exposure to sunlight is claimed to decompose some of the ingredients in cosmetics that get absorbed through the skin. The ultraviolet radiation in the sunlight can penetrate human skin and sensitize cosmetics ingredients leading to the damage of cell constituents like protein RNA and DNA, reports the study.
In their research, Hans and co-workers assessed the light induced toxic potential of various cosmetics products by observing the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and haemolysis - the breakdown of red blood cells under sunlight exposure.
If further analysis proves the ITRC's findings to be true it will cause serious reverberations throughtout the cosmetic formulation sector.