Everything you need to know when choosing a sunscreen to protect you, your family, AND..
be kind to our oceans.
The packaging doesn’t tell you that the ingredients can disrupt your hormones, or inhibit the absorption of Vitamin D which is critical to so many processes in the body – including preventing cancer. They don’t tell you which ingredients are photosensitive – which impacts effectiveness and can even change form to become hazardous when exposed to light – ah, duhh. The marketing doesn’t tell you that even if it’s ‘derived from vitamin A’ that it’s known to accelerate growth of cancerous cells, or that some chemical ingredients encourage free radicals in the body.
It doesn’t need to be rocket surgery, or brain science.
Physical versus chemical sunscreens.
Physically, we can use hats, clothing and shades to help moderate our exposure to the sun. Also physical, are the mineral sunscreens that create a physical barrier or coating on the skin to protect from sun damage. The safest mineral ingredient is zinc oxide. By using a sunscreen with a non nano zinc oxide, the sunscreen remains on the surface of the skin, creating a barrier. This is the basis for many zinc sunscreen products. Sunscreens with nano ingredients have particles small enough to be absorbed into the skin.
Chemical sunscreens use chemical ingredients that are absorbed into the skin, to reflect or repel UV rays from the sun. By being absorbed into our skin, the chemical ingredients can access tissues, our blood stream and nervous system. If the sunscreen is applied by a spray, our respiratory system is also exposed.
Oxybenzone and octinoxate (octyl methoxycinnamate) are among the most commonly used chemicals in sunscreens, that have been found to have endocrine or hormone disrupting effects, as well as being harmful to coral reefs. In fact, Hawaii has banned the use of sunscreens containing these chemicals; Australia has not.
So what will you be layering on your body and your most dearly loved this summer?
Check out other articles on skin health in this blog and for more great tips on looking after your skin.
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