The harmful effects of sunscreen and DIY non toxic sunscreen

The harmful effects of sunscreen and DIY non toxic sunscreen

With summer in full swing now, everyone’s headed to the beach, the lake, camping and they’re all doing the same thing: slathering on sunscreen. And if you’re not using a non toxic sunscreen, you’re doing yourself a disservice.

I’m a huge advocate for any and everything natural. The food industry, the beauty industry and everything in between are heavily polluted with chemicals. We’re literally eating, drinking and slathering chemicals on our bodies every day.

I often find myself wanting to shout at people: “Don’t you know that the sunscreen you’re using is worse than sun exposure?!”

But I bite my tongue because I have a feeling that wouldn’t go over well and shouting never makes anyone want to listen to you. So I’m writing a blog post about it.

The sunscreen industry is a hoax that tells us the sun will give us cancer and the only way to prevent that is by covering our bodies in a man made substance.

The chemicals in sunscreen absorbs into our skin and blood streams and has even been found in our urine, blood and breast milk.

non toxic sunscreen options

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Mineral sunscreen vs Chemical sunscreen:

There are two types of sunscreens: mineral and chemical.

Mineral sunscreens use ingredients like zinc oxide and titanium dioxide which create a barrier to protect your skin from harmful UV rays.

Chemical sunscreens use harmful ingredients like oxybenzone, octisalate, homosalate and more that when applied to soak into your skin, your tissue and your blood stream.

I’m not saying that chemical sunscreen will give you cancer but new research show that it has been linked to thyroid problems and may interfere with hormones.

With oxybenzone being the most dangerous a study by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention found it in 96% of subjects. This chemical can reduce sperm count and even be a cause for endometriosis in women.

We need to take a step back and realize that we are fueling and “protecting” our bodies with chemicals that are only doing more harm than good.

Vitamin D:

Did you know that about 80% of the population is deficient in vitamin D? Chances are, you are too. Being deficient in vitamin D causes things like depression, bone and hair loss, hormone disruption, fatigue and more. And one of the major causes of being deficient is sunscreen.

Traditional sunscreens not only soak into your skin and cause an array of issues but also completely blocks out the sun and deprives you of your much needed vitamin intake.

Sunscreen companies and the FDA do a dang good job at convincing consumers that the very sun (which is natural and supposed to be there) is out to get us and so dangerous that we could wind up with cancer from it.

I’m not denying that high exposure to UV rays can cause some types of skin cancer but it’s not as big and scary as these companies make it out to be. They just want you to buy their product. So much so that they’ll lie to you.

It’s time to wake up and realize that we are often fear conditioned into putting money into their pockets.

From the inside:

Sunscreen use has gone up dramatically over the past few years as our skin is protecting ourselves from the sun less and less. I think this has a lot to do with us not taking proper care of our bodies.

Since this post is heavily focused on chemicals let’s talk about the chemicals we put into our bodies for a minute.

Everything used to be natural. Food wash grown, harvested and eaten without the use of harmful pesticides. Food was natural and not processed and filled with fillers.

Fueling our bodies with whole, natural foods strengthens every part of us, including our skin. But consuming processed, genetically modified food weakens us. All healing takes place inside of our bodies. Cuts on our skin are healed from the inside out.

As it is with preventing sunburns. Eating a processed diet creates a bodily environment that can’t protect itself from the sun and sun burns.

I’m not saying that eating a whole and natural diet will make you invincible to sun burns or sun damage. But I do believe it that God gave us everything we’d need on this planet and eating the natural foods definitely play a part in our protection.

Sunscreen and our coral reefs:

You might be reading this going “Wait, what?? What do the coral reefs have to do with anything?” Well just give me a second and I’ll explain.

We already know about the impacts our waste and chemicals have on the environment and sunscreen, traditional sunscreen is no different.

Places like Hawaii have already banned sunscreens containing oxybenzone because much like how it’s damaging to us, it’s damaging to the environment, namely the coral reefs.

Research has shown that this ingredient can cause deformities, DNA damage and even death to the coral reefs. This is a HUGE problem with lasting consequences as coral reefs play an integral part to the ocean’s ecosystem. (source)

DIY Sunscreen:

Now that you’re aware of the harmful effects of sunscreen, you have a decision to make. You can continue to use conventional sunscreen and expose yourself to the risks, you could purchase some chemical free, mineral sunscreen (we’ll get to that in a minute) or you could make your own sunscreen to ensure you know exactly what ingredients are going into it!

Here’s my favorite recipe: (via


1/2 cup almond oil

1/4 cup coconut oil

1/4 cup beeswax 

2 TBS zinc oxide

1 tsp carrot seed oil

1 TBS Shea butter

Optional: essential oil of choice for scent


Combine all of the ingredients except the zinc in a glass jar.

Fill a medium-sized saucepan with water and place the jar with a lid loosely on top inside. Turn to medium heat.

Stir the jar occasionally as the ingredients melt.

When all ingredients have melted, add the zinc. Stir occasionally over the next few hours to ensure it mixes in well.

Store in the fridge.

Nontoxic sunscreen options:

If you’re not as crafty or just short on time, you can purchase a non-toxic sunscreen! Here are some of the best:

ATTITUDE SPF 30 Frangrance free sunscreen 

Green Beaver Natural sunscreen lotion with SPF 40

All Good sport sunscreen lotion with SPF 30

Australian Gold Botanical Mineral sunscreen with SPF 50

non toxic sunscreen

non toxic sunscreens

There are tons of resources and options out there to better protect ourselves. We need to start looking at the world through a different lens. All it takes is a little education and a little action.

Now go forth and have a safe and happy summer!

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  1. Maria
    August 6, 2019 / 8:50 am

    If you do end up with a sunburn (definitely not healthy or preferred…) you can drink green tea and the burn will fade to a tan with no to minimal peeling. I read it somewhere online. I ended up with a bad sunburn at one point, didn’t know if I believed this life hack, but it worked. They claimed it was the antioxisants stopping free radicals, and the hydration of the cells from the inside out. I made hot green tea and poured it over a big cup of ice. I now swear by it. I’ve also heard healthy eating helps immensely. Live the sunscreen recipe! Thank you!

    • Caity Rose
      August 6, 2019 / 11:17 am

      That’s amazing! I’ve never heard of that before! I’ll be sure to keep it in mind if I ever get a sunburn!

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