It seems everything has an organic variant these days, which is all good and well, but when it comes to something as important as sun protection, is organic the way to go? Your skin is by far your largest organ, and being porous, it absorbs over 60% of what you put onto it within 26 seconds. That in and of itself is enough reason for us to pay close attention to the ingredients of the skincare products we use.
Depending on who you ask, you’ll get various answers regarding the efficacy of organic sunscreens. Research indicates that they might not be quite as effective as their chemical-based counterparts. Still, many people would argue that they would instead opt for the organic option and practice more sun safety than go for a more chemical-based alternative.
When it comes to choosing an organic sunscreen, these are some factors you want to keep in mind.
Ensuring that the main ingredients in your organic sunscreen are natural helps eliminate any phony options. Some ingredients to look for include Zinc oxide, Titanium oxide, and organic tallow. These ingredients offer protection by sitting on top of the skin and deflecting the sun’s rays, decreasing the absorption of damaging rays. These ingredients are gentle yet effective and often even have a calming effect on the skin.
The main culprits to avoid in sunscreens include oxybenzone, octinoxate, parabens, phenoxyethanol, homosalate, and fragrances. These ingredients, especially when used regularly, can have damaging effects. Some are considered to cause hormone disruption, some are linked to increased risks of cancer, and in some cases, traces of these materials have been found in organ tissue and even breast milk weeks after discontinuing use.
How To Best Use Organic Sunscreen
The best way to ensure that your organic sunscreen is giving you the best coverage is:
- to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen – we recommend SPF 30 and higher.
- Apply 15 minutes before you leave the house and re-apply every 2 hours, especially after swimming or sweating.
- Consider wearing a wide-brimmed hat and light coverage in times of prolonged exposure (and even for shorter periods).
When you’re working hard to minimize toxic exposure in your life, one of the best ways of doing so can include examining the items we use on a daily basis. Sunscreen is considered something we should use every day, so making sure your organic sunscreen is doing its part can go a long way in decreasing your toxic load. Look out for these organic ingredients and spend some time in nature, knowing they’ve got you covered!
Drop us a comment and tell us which organic sunscreens have your back.