Girlfriends, you’re heading to the beach or the pool for some fun this summer and think, “Oh, I better pick up some sunscreen!” Once you get to the store there are bunches to pick from and you think, “Which one is really the best sunscreen?”
Well don’t worry. I did lots of research and this is what I found. Most of typical sunscreens contain really terrible ingredients and aren’t that effective. Believe it or not, many of our sunscreens are actually not allowed to be sold overseas especially in Europe (1) where cosmetics are regulated the same way as food.
So here is the scoop. There are several things in typical sunscreens that are concerning. First is not enough protection from UVA rays. UVA rays can make our skin look like real wrinkly leather and may mess with our immune system. Also, they may be linked to awful issues as melanoma (2). Second, many conventional sunscreens contain bad chemicals. Bad chemicals that can make beautiful coral in the ocean die as well as been known to crossover from the blood to the brain. Oxybenzone is often found in sunscreens and has been known to mess with our hormones. That is all we need is to be messing with our hormones when we feel lousy at times already. Our men should watch out too because it is known to mess their sperm production.
Lastly, many sunscreens contain Retinyl Palmitate which is a form of Vitamin A. This has been known to be linked to some icky looking skin legions/tumors (3). You don’t even want to see the nasty pictures. Lastly, some girlfriends are finding that they are having allergic reactions to this stuff. Girls, we need to be careful! We slather this stuff all over our bodies, our kids bodies, and our grand kids bodies too! And we tend to use lots of it.
So what’s a girl to do? From my research, here is my checklist for the best sunscreens:
Mineral based (tend to be made with zinc oxide and titanium dioxide)
Fragrance Free (if you want some fragrance in your sunscreen, then just add a drop or two of your favorite essential oil)
Lotion Form (not spray or powder) because these things tend to add even more yuck chemicals.
Recommended for Babies (sometimes), but you can use it too! (however, check the label first)
Environmental Working Group (EWG.org) ranks (0-2)
The Environmental Working Group has done tons of research on this if you want to learn more. Of course, protecting your body from the sun is important by wearing by a big floppy hat or a baseball cap. Also, protect your peepers by wearing sunglasses. Wearing sun shielding clothing and a big beach umbrella is great too.
Here are my top picks to pick from on a Girlfriend budget…
Aveeno Baby Continuous Protection Lotion Sunscreen, Sensitive Skin, SPF 50 - Typically available at Target or find Aveeno Baby Sunscreen on Amazon.
Babyganics Mineral-Based Sunscreen, SPF 50 - Typically available at Target or find Babyganics Sunscreen on Amazon.
Goddess Garden Organics Everyday Natural Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 30 - Typically Whole Foods and Spouts tend to have it. You can also find Goddess Garden Natural Sunscreen on Amazon.