This guidance describes FDA’s enforcement approach with respect to over-the-counter (OTC) sunscreen products marketed without approved applications during the period before a final sunscreen monograph becomes effective. It is intended for manufacturers who market OTC sunscreen drug products without an approved application. OTC sunscreens are not yet the subject of an effective final monograph, and we continue to evaluate information relevant to defining conditions under which such products are generally recognized as safe and effective (GRASE) and not misbranded. However, OTC sunscreens marketed without approved applications and containing specified active ingredients (see section II., Background) are subject to labeling and testing requirements located at 21 CFR 201.327. Several other ongoing and planned rulemaking proceedings will also address these products.

In general, FDA’s guidance documents do not establish legally enforceable responsibilities. Instead, guidances describe the Agency’s current thinking on a topic and should be viewed only as recommendations, unless specific regulatory or statutory requirements are cited. The use of the word should in Agency guidances means that something is suggested or recommended, but not required.

For more information go to