Sangeetha Pulapaka

The main component of a sunscreen product is the UV-filter or filters. Their job is to stop ultraviolet light from reaching the skin. UV-filters can do this in one of two ways: they can either absorb the UV-light by 'soaking it up'; or they can scatter it and reflect it away from the skin. Consequently, there are two different types of UV-filter and these are: 

Absorber filters (organic filters) Absorber type UV-filters work by absorbing ultraviolet light much like a sponge soaks up water. Each tiny sunscreen 'sponge' soaks up ultraviolet light, and then ‘drips’ it back out after converting it into lower energy and less dangerous infrared light. These filters can be thought of as ‘energy converters', converting dangerous ultraviolet light into safer infrared warmth

Reflector filters (mineral or inorganic filters) Unlike the absorber type UVfilters, reflectors tend to be less specific about the type of UVlight they reflect and tend to protect against both UVA & UVB. These sun filters act in a different way. Instead of

soaking up the ultraviolet rays in the way that the absorber sun filters do, these materials reflect and scatter the ultraviolet light away from the skin without changing it to anything else. They can be thought of as thousands of tiny mirrors each reflecting ultraviolet light away from the skin

The most commonly used UVfilters are the absorbers because these are more efficient (you get more sun protection for the same amount of ingredient). However they are often supplemented with reflectors.