Let's face it, we all need to protect ourselves from the sun that shines its lovely rays down on us everyday. But there are so many options to choose from and it can be really confusing. Low SPF, High SPF, sprays, creams, UVA blocking, UVB blocking...the list goes on. And now, with the never ending amount of research abilities we have, we've learned that a lot of the creams, lotions and lipsticks we've been slathering all over our bodies for years have actually proven to be harmful for us. Skin being the largest organ in our body, it absorbs whatever you put on it. Not only do we need to protect it from the sun, but also harmful ingredients.
Ingredients like phthalates, nano-particles, parabens and many other chemicals that are difficult to pronounce are actually found in a lot of the products out on the market and they can irritate our skin and also cause long term health risks. Yikes!
It can be a little overwhelming to sift through all the information out there so I thought I'd put together a list of 5 sunscreens that are free of the ingredients I mentioned above and also a lot more. (Keep reading to find out how you can win one of these sunscreens for yourself!)
Before we dive in, here are a few tips for you when you're out looking for sunscreen yourself!
TIPS FOR PURCHASING SAFE SUNSCREEN
Find a sunscreen that primarily uses the active ingredient, zinc-oxide. Zinc-oxide is the best formula for blocking out both UVA and UVB rays and cannot be absorbed into your blood, unlike all the petroleum-based sunscreen chemicals. It sits on the top of your skin where it needs to be, effectively providing a shield against damaging UV rays.
Titanium dioxide is tricky to avoid in sunscreens but it's best if you do. There's quite a lot of controversy surrounding it, but it is considered a carcinogen and studies have shown it being linked to cancer in some cases.
UVA rays - Age Your Skin
UVB rays - Burn Your Skin
I try to think of it as "A" for age and "B" for burn!
What are nano-particles and why should they be avoided?
Nano-particles can have the same dimensions as our biological molecules, such as proteins. Because they are the same size, your body can't tell the difference between the two and tissue studies indicate that nano-particles could damage DNA and lead to cancer. As far as I know, we're still not entirely sure of the exact effects of nano-particles and how our body reacts to them, however, I say avoid them where you can.
Now here's a list of sunscreens that you can rest assured are safer than almost anything else on the market.
YOUR GUIDE TO SAFE SUNSCREEN
Badger Sunscreen: SPF 34. Certified Organic. Uses Zinc-Oxide. This is an extremely safe and healthy sunscreen. It sits on the outer, dead layer of your skin, and any free radicals generated will not affect living cells below. It's consistency is quite thick and I find it's difficult to spread onto your skin and is white in color but I would say this is one of the healthiest options out there. If you can get past it's consistency, this is the one for you! It's Vegan too!
Honest Sunscreen: SPF 50. Uses Zinc-Oxide. Some ingredients are organic, some aren't. Free of nano-particles and water resistant. It rubs in fairly well but can leave the skin feeling slightly greasy and not totally translucent in color. It's Vegan too!
Babo Botanicals Clear Sunscreen: SPF 30. Uses Zinc-Oxide. Some Ingredients are certified organic, some aren't. Uses non-nano zinc oxide. This sunscreen is not waterproof but is very easy to apply, comparatively to the previous two. Hypo-Allergenic, gluten-free. It's Vegan too!
Raw Elements Eco Formula: SPF 30+ Uses Zinc-Oxide. A thicker sunscreen, and a little greasy but the ingredients are great and the price is reasonable. It's water resistant and most of the ingredients are certified organic. It does have beeswax in it so it's not entirely Vegan, but it's cruelty-free.
Coola: SPF 50 I've you've tried some of the other mineral sunscreens and just find them unbearably thick or greasy then Coola is a good compromise. It does contain low levels of titanium dioxide but glides on like a glove. Certified Organic.
For awhile I was limiting myself to Badger and Honest sunscreen and I found I was using sunscreen less and less because it was so thick. I like to use both and find a happy medium so that I'm not avoiding sunscreen altogether. I live in California so I need to protect myself! The other downside is the price, it's a little more expensive than the rest of the previous examples. It's also cruelty Free.
If you'd like to see how safe your sunscreen or any other beauty related products, head over to EWG's website and see how they rank. You may be surprised as to what you find and some companies that tote their products as 'natural', really aren't.
Now for the good part... I'm going to giveaway one of these sunscreens and the winner gets to pick which brand they would like.
All you have to do is 1) Follow me on Instagram or Facebook. 2) Comment on either Facebook, my most recent Instagram pic about sunscreen, or below this post. 3) Be sure your comment is about something you're grateful for in your life and which sunscreen you would like to win! That's it! (You can enter twice by commenting in more than one location).
GOOD LUCK and have fun in the sun!