DIY Natural Sunscreen
Conventional chemical-based sunscreen is bar none one of the most toxic products on this planet. I explore this more in depth in THIS Skincare 101 article. There are many ways to make your own natural sunscreen, with zinc as the active ingredient. All the ingredients are easily found on Amazon (or at your local health store), I've linked to the products that I use myself.
Be mindful that sunscreen that contains zinc is a sun block, so you will not be absorbing the beneficial Vitamin D (and other synergistic magic that comes from exposing your bare skin to the sunshine). Sunshine is absolutely an integral part of a thriving body, but this recipe is a great way to prevent burning once you have gotten enough sun for the day.
- 2 heaping tbsp of shea butter
- 1/4 cup beeswax
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1/4 cup apricot oil
- 1/4 cup avocado oil
- 2 tbsp non-nanoparticle zinc oxide
- optional: essential oils (see below)
1. On low heat, melt together (using a double broiler method) the shea butter and cacao butter, coconut oil, beeswax, apricot oil, and avocado oil
2. Once melted, mix together and turn off the heat
3. Add in the non-nano particle zinc oxide (and optionally essential oils)
4. Pour into a container (ideally glass) and let cool/ solidify. Using a darker glass (like amber, or miron) will prevent oxidization and preserve the integrity of your suncream.
1. You can add in essential oils (make sure they are sun friendly) to add fragrance to your sunscreen. I like carrot seed, raspberry seed, pomegranate seed, sandalwood, and frankincense.
2. You can substitute any of the mentioned oils for almond oil, jojoba oil, or olive oil.
There is a lot of misconception about SPF (sun protector factor) when it comes to sunscreen. First of all, higher SPF doesn't (really) mean more protection.
The difference in actual "protection" from UVB rays is negligible (SPF 15 filters out approx. 93% of all incoming UVB rays, SPF 30 filters 97%, and SPF 50 filters 98%). So in a nutshell, the lower the SPF, the more often you need to reapply; but the reality of knowing when really depends on your skin, and what you're doing. If you're sweating/ swimming: reapply more often. If your skin is very fair/ prone to burning: reapply more often.
This particular recipe by itself will provide you with an SPF of 25-30, but if you add a high quality carrot seed oil and/ or the raspberry seed oil, and/or the pomegranate seed oil: it will shoot up to 40+. That being said: the SPF really doesn't matter, because you need to understand the synergy of your own skin as it relates to the sun. Despite the quote above, the same skin cancer prevention website writes about the problems with the SPF model, whereby "no sunscreen, regardless of strength, should be expected to stay effective longer than two hours without reapplication". So with this recipe you know the protection is there, but it is up to you to be diligent with applying it based on your own individual needs.
Lastly, although SPF is a necessary tool in the life of someone who spends a lot of time in the sun- know that using sunscreen will not allow your body to synthesize Vitamin D (+ other medicinal benefits from the sunshine). Make sure you allow yourself enough safe sun exposure (which means sunshine on bare skin) to reap the benefits of the most healing, free, gift that nature has to offer.
Check out my Q&A with Chloe HERE.