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article imageIs getting a sunburn a concern? L'Oreal has a patch for that

By Karen Graham     Jan 7, 2016 in Health
Las Vegas - L'Oreal has released a skin patch that changes color to indicate if the wearer may be getting too much UV radiation exposure. Called My UV Patch, the product will be available later this year.
The need for smart approaches in protecting the skin from sunburn has led to a number of new technologies, including wearable devices such as bracelets, brooches and even rubberized patches that can be sewn into clothing.
L'Oreal has gone a step further by developing a heart-shaped patch about the size of the nicotine patch that can be applied to any area on the skin a consumer wants to monitor. It can be worn for several days, and according to Tech Crunch, it's free.
The patch was unveiled Wednesday at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show, held in Las Vegas, Nevada. The one square inch transparent patch contains photosensitive dyes that factor in the baseline skin tone and change colors when exposed to UV rays to indicate varying levels of sun exposure, according to the press release.
Carolina Milanesi, the chief of research at the KWP Comtech, said that while the whole concept of UV-detecting technology is "pretty amazing," there might be some concerns over the convenience of use with some consumers.
The consumer will need to upload a photo of the patch to La Roche-Posay’s My UV Patch mobile app, coming out on iOS and Android, in order to see their results. The patch contains a blue dye that changes color upon receiving photons from sunlight. The app will then analyze the the various photosensitive dye squares in the picture.
Guive Balooch global vice president of L'Oréal's Technology Incubator, told the BBC, "Today all the wearables you see are jewellery or wrist bands - but not wearable in the sense that you wear them anywhere on your body." He cautioned that the patch is not intended to be used as a reminder to reapply sunscreen.
L'Oreal has changed the focus on skin care in this instance, to one of monitoring ultraviolet rays hitting our skin. "The issue is not when to reapply, the issue is how much exposure do I have," he said.
With all the different UV monitoring and detection technologies available today, the basic premise behind them is to educate the public to the dangers behind excessive tanning and sunburns. It does take diligence on the part of consumers to protect their skin from skin cancer and premature aging, and the UV patch will be an useful aid.
More about uv monitor, loreal, UVdetecting technological, Nicotine patch, wearable technology
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