In today’s world, it is easy to make the decision to switch to a more natural skincare routine due to the fact that natural alternatives to almost anything can be easily found. That being said, what urgently required a proper natural alternative were the sunscreens and the ingredient that makes it all possible is zinc oxide.
This mineral is also known as “physical barrier substance” because it has the ability to sit atop the skin and reflect the sun by scattering away ultraviolet rays. Due to this ability, a small amount of zinc oxide can be found in some chemical sunscreens as well. Contrary to natural suncare products, chemical ones usually include ingredients like artificial fragrances that irritate the skin, and oxybenzone – a chemical that has been linked with a higher risk of endometriosis in women, lower sperm quality in men, skin allergies, and cell damage.
Other damaging chemicals that are present in non-natural sunscreens are the parabens. These are used to prolong shelf-life by preventing the growth of mould and bacteria within the product. This, of course, comes with consequences. By applying chemical based sunscreen, you allow parabens to get to your skin, penetrate it and remain within the tissue. By staying there these cause health problems, which may include cancer.
One of the biggest and most important perks that make the natural suncare products the optimal solution for your skin’s protection is the fact that they protect against both UVA and UVB rays. This, however, is not the case with most chemical based ones. Mineral sunscreens are also less likely to clog pores, which makes them an ideal solution for anyone with acne-prone skin. When it comes to proper use and appliance, you can be at peace since mineral sunscreens are effective immediately after application, just be careful not to miss certain areas (which are also sensitive) like your ears, the back of the neck, lips and your feet. And, of course, don’t forget to reapply at least every two to three hours.
Lastly, be advised that the natural mineral sunscreen shouldn’t be the only tool in your sun-protection routine. Besides the regular application of the sunscreen, it is recommended that you seek shade whenever possible, especially during peak hours (between 10 am and 4 pm). Next, you should wear sun-protective clothing (don’t worry, the sunscreen still works and gets the job done), and if you want to keep your skin silky, and undamaged for longer period of time, stay away from tanning beds.