In a recent letter ruling, the Virginia tax commissioner addressed whether sales tax applies to sales of stretch mark therapy cream, anti-wrinkle cream with SPF-15 sunscreen, and sunscreen with SPF-50.
Virginia exempts nonprescription drugs and proprietary medicine purchased for the cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease in human beings. Cosmetics are not exempt even if they contain nonprescription drugs or medical ingredients that serve secondary functions.
The commissioner determined that the stretch marks therapy and the anti-wrinkle creams are primarily used for cosmetic purposes and are therefore taxable even though they contain nonprescription drugs or medical ingredients.
The SPF-50 sunscreen lotion is primarily used to prevent sunburn in human beings and is therefore exempt.