Natural and organic spf sunscreens used to be harder to find but due to demand, more and more have become available in recent years.
Picking a Natural SPF Sunscreen for the sake of our HEALTH:
You should avoid the following ingredients:
- Vitamin A (Retinyl palmitate)
- Aerosol spray and powder sunscreen
- Added insect repellant like deet
On the “powdered sunscreen” I have to note that I think powdered mineral makeup that has natural mineral sunscreen for regular daily wear would be an exception.
If you haven’t noticed yet, one of my favorite resources is the Cosmetics Database from EWGEWG Environmental Working Group – an organization focused on research to make informed choices and live a healthy life in a healthy environment.. For a list of general ingredients to avoid by product category, check out their guides:
- Tips for safer products: http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/top-tips-for-safer-products
- Wallet Guide: http://static.ewg.org/skindeep/pdf/EWG_cosmeticsguide.pdf
For a full listing of some of the best options, check out their listings here:
- SPF 15 to 30 : http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/browse/sunscreen:+SPF+15-30/
- SPF 30+ : http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/browse/sunscreen:+SPF+greater+than+30/
Picking a Natural SPF Sunscreen for the sake of our OCEANS:
Not only is it important to be concerned about what we put on our skin but since many people are wearing sunscreen on beaches and into the ocean, how it affects ocean wildlife is something to think about as well.
Be sure to avoid sunblocks with:
These cause complete coral reef bleaching at very low concentrations. If you want to read more about this bleaching phenomenon, check out this National Geographic Article.
What sunscreens are both healthy and won’t harm our ocean wildlife – BOTH?
Well the easiest to find would probably be Badger. They even have one of the easiest to follow explanations about the coral reefs. Most of their sunscreens are within the 1-2 range (lower is better) with the cosmetics database. They ARE mineral based sunscreens so they may leave some white residue and they are in the $15-$20 price range. I haven’t tried this one yet so I can’t tell you from personal experience the pros and cons.
Honestly the next sunscreen I’m probably going to buy will be from Coola. I was really impressed with the sample in my birchbox AND it does fit both health and ocean requirements. I’ll probably get the Coola Face SPF 30 Unscented for general use and Coola Classic Sport SPF 45 Sunscreen Unscented for longer outdoor / swimming use. These are again in the 1-2 range with the cosmetics database (the Coola brand has some older listings that are higher.)
Since there area lot of personal preferences, I’m probably not going to try and go through a whole lot of sunscreens simply to review them but I am going to go through a few for myself just to find what I personally like. What I had been using wasn’t very healthy.
For the most part, products 3 and under via the Cosmetics Database are going to also be safe for the oceans (but just quickly double check the ingredients to be sure!!)