When quarantine measures went into place, I found myself and my family spending more time outdoors. Getting outside and connecting with nature has been a highlight of the last few months. (Plus, an important way to increase Vitamin D levels which play a critical role in immune function).
Now that it’s summer, if we’re going to be out in the sun all day (the hot “Florida sun”), I pack sunscreen. As I age, I’ve also realized how important sunscreen is in my skincare routine.
Is Sunscreen Safe?
Is Sunscreen Safe?
Ursa Major shares in an article titled How Do Toxics Enter Our Bodies?
“Over the past 15 years, more than 10,000 Americans have had their blood tested by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in an attempt to determine their ‘chemical body burden.’ The results of the CDC study were stunning: even those who lived in remote areas were found to have hundreds of synthetic chemicals in their bloodstream. More disturbingly, this chemical exposure begins even before we take our first breath— an astounding 287 chemical toxins have been detected within the umbilical cord blood of newborns.”
And according to the Environmental Working Group, “In recent FDA testing, all non-mineral sunscreen chemicals absorbed into the body and could be measured in blood after just a single use, and many sunscreen ingredients have been detected in breast milk and urine samples.”
The concern is NOT chemicals (back to high school chemistry class: everything has a chemical composition); rather, it’s the effect particular chemicals may have on the body (such as disrupting hormones).
The Environmental Working Group wrote an informative article about key chemicals used to make sunscreen products and rated each chemical based on safety. Read it over here.
A quick note about using non-toxic sunscreen options. Most mineral-based sunscreen products start off very white on the skin so it’s easy to tell when you need to apply more. This is only true with traditional sunscreen, not tinted moisturizers, facial products, or tinted lip balms. I’ve also found that most of these mineral-based products need to be applied a few times during the day, especially if you’re swimming.
Non-Toxic Sunscreen Product Guide
The products listed below are my favorite sunscreen options. I’ve included the EWG score for each brand/product. 1 is considered the best score for a product. The score increases from there based on concerning ingredients used. You can search how well your sunscreen scores using this link (use the search bar “search for your sunscreen”).
For the body and face…
- Think Sport or Think Baby: Currently, this is my favorite sunscreen. It’s easy to find at most health food stores and Whole Foods or on Amazon. And it’s very well priced. Environmental Working Group Score: 1
- Badger: I’ve used the Badger line of sunscreen products on my kids for several years. The products are available at most health food stores and on Amazon. The sunscreen options range from SPF 15-35.
Environmental Working Group Score: 1
- All Good: This company sells squeeze tubes, sticks, and metal tin options. The sunscreen butter, which is my favorite in the line, is labeled “very water resistant” and “reef friendly.” All Good also makes tinted lip balm with SPF 15. The sunscreen options range from SPF 18-50. Environmental Working Group Score: 1
- BeautyCounter: I used BeautyCounter sunscreen a couple of summers ago and was pleased with how well it works. I didn’t continue using it due to the price ($32!) and the fact that I can only order through the BeautyCounter website. BeautyCounter sells a variety of application options. The sunscreen options range from SPF 15-30. BeautyCounter also makes a tinted moisturizer with SPF called Dew Skin. Environmental Working Group Score: 1-2
- Suntegrity: This line came recommended by my holistic esthetician. The line features everything from tinted products for the face to unscented sunscreen for the whole family to SPF lipstick. I love the mineral stick as it’s easy to apply and great for the face and body (and easy to keep in your purse or beach/park bag). All sunscreen products are SPF 30. Environmental Working Group Score: 1-2
For the face…
- W3LL People Tinted Moisturizer: I love this company’s makeup and the accessibility of the products (sold at many Target stores in the US). The tinted SPF goes on smooth and the coverage is fantastic. I go with the light shade. Environmental Working Group Score: 2
- Josh Rosebrook Nutrient Day Cream: Everything Josh makes is incredible and he puts such intention and care in his formulations. The day cream with SPF 30 comes in a non-tinted and tinted option. It’s on the higher end of price ranges, but it’s fantastic and one bottle lasts a long time. I use the tinted version most days. Environmental Working Group Score: no score as this is a smaller company
- Suntegrity: This line came recommended by my holistic esthetician. The line features everything from tinted products for the face to unscented sunscreen for the whole family to SPF lipstick. I love the mineral stick as it’s easy to apply and great for the face (and easy to keep in your purse or beach/park bag). All sunscreen products are SPF 30. Environmental Working Group Score: 1-2
I’d love to hear what you’re loving and using in the comment section below. Sharing is incredibly valuable for the community. We’re all on this journey together.