Summer is officially here! This means most people are spending much more time outdoors. However, while spending time outside, you should ensure you stay sun-smart. Part of that is using an effective sunscreen. However, many sunscreens contain various chemicals that can have a negative effect on your skin. That’s why we’ve got a list of the 5 best natural sunscreens that actually work to protect your skin.
Natural sunscreen doesn’t contain Oxybenzone or Avobenzone. Oxybenzone and Avobenzone are compounds that absorb UVB and UVA rays. So while it stops you from burning, it can affect your skin. In fact, many people experience dry skin and itching after using common sunscreens. Recent studies also show that these chemicals are absorbing into our skin faster than previously thought, and may have various side effects. That is why opting for a natural sunscreen can be beneficial for you and your skin. Natural sunscreens will contain Zinc Oxide and/or Titanium Dioxide as their active ingredients as they reflect UVB and UVA rays. Zinc Oxide and Titanium Dioxide are the only natural SPF ingredients for sunscreen approved by the FDA.
Now that you know the differences, here are the best natural sunscreens we recommend.
First up is Botanical SPF 50 sunscreen by Australian Gold. This shea butter-based sunscreen option is grease-free and lightweight with a citrus scent. Containing 4% of both Zinc and Titanium Dioxide, it effectively reflects the sun's rays. It also contains Kakadu Plum, Eucalyptus and Red Algae; these antioxidants help to hydrate your skin. This sunscreen is also water resistant for up to 80 minutes. Available for purchase at Target, Sephora and Walmart.
All Blue Lizard Australian Sunscreen products are made with a mineral base. However, our recommendation is for the Sensitive Mineral 50 SPF sunscreen. This sunscreen contains 10% Zinc Oxide and 8% Titanium Dioxide. With a beeswax base, this sunscreen is easy to apply and fragrance-free making it perfect for sensitive skin. It is also water and sweat-resistant for 80 minutes. As an added bonus, the sunscreen cap will turn blue when exposed to harmful UV rays, helping remind you to protect yourself. Available for purchase at Walgreens and Rite Aid.
This SPF 50 mineral sunscreen contains 17% Zinc Oxide and 2% Titanium Dioxide. Its lightweight, oil-free formula is gentle enough for the whole family, including children as young as 6 months old. This sunscreen is easy to apply, fragrance-free and leaves no white residue. Finally, this sunscreen is water-resistant for up to 80 minutes. It is available for purchase at Walmart, Walgreens, and most drugstores.
This Drunk Elephant sunscreen is 30 SPF and contains 20% Zinc Oxide as it’s only active ingredient. Other ingredients include Aloe Vera and Virgin Marula Oil to help keep your skin hydrated, and Grape Juice Extract to minimize redness and soothe your skin. It is suitable for all skin types and contains no fragrances or silicones. This sunscreen is not water-resistant, so it is not suitable for swimming. Available for purchase at Sephora.
This 50 SPF is organic and non-oily. Specifically designed with athletes in mind, this sunscreen begins to work immediately after application unlike most other brands. It is water and sweat-resistant for 80 minutes and is easy to apply. The active ingredient is Zinc Oxide (20%) and also contains Aloe Vera, Jojoba Oil and Hyaluronic acid to keep your skin hydrated. Available for purchase at Target.
Applying sunscreen daily is a great habit to get into year-round. That way when summer hits, you won’t forget and you can save yourself from burning. Stay sun-smart this summer and use one of the recommended natural sunscreens to protect your skin. If you have concerns about sun damage to your skin, contact your primary care doctor or use telemedicine to get an evaluation.