Choosing the perfect sunscreen can be a tricky process for the conscious consumer. Not only should a great sun cream be effective against both UVA (ageing) and UVB (burning) rays, it should also be free from animal testing and ingredients (many sunscreens contain beeswax or lanolin). Although there are now many vegan sunscreens on the market, for a product to be eco-friendly it should also be non-toxic to our bodies and the environment.
Sun protection products traditionally contain chemical sunscreens including oxybenzone, octisalate, octocrylene, homosalate and octinoxate, however there are concerns over the safety of these ingredients. Laboratory studies have suggested that some of these chemical UV filters may mimic hormones – disrupting the endocrine and reproductive systems – and many people report sunscreen-related skin allergies. Opting for a sun cream containing mineral sunscreens such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide is a safer option for our bodies.
But it’s not just potential health risks that we need to take into consideration when choosing a non-toxic sunscreen; we now know that some of the chemical ingredients in sun cream have been linked to coral bleaching. Even just a very small amount of these chemicals can cause viral infections in the algae that live in coral and provide it with oxygen. When the algae dies, the coral loses its oxygen and food supply, resulting in a loss of colour and an increased risk of illness, DNA damage and reproductive problems. As a consequence, Hawaii is set to be the first U.S. state to ban sunscreens containing oxybenzone and octinoxate, but until a worldwide ban is issued, consumers need to take responsibility by avoiding toxic products.
We’ve researched the best natural, vegan and non-toxic sunscreens, so if you’re heading to the beach this summer you can relax and enjoy the sun safely whilst helping to protect our oceans.
Jason’s mineral based natural sunblock provides both UVA and UVB protection and creates a natural barrier to protect skin against sun burn. Unlike most mineral sunscreens on the market, the easy-to-rub in formula won’t leave a white film on the skin. The hypoallergenic formula makes it ideal for sensitive skin and for use on babies over six months of age. This sunscreen is water-resistant for 80 minutes and is reef safe and biodegradable, meaning you can enter the sea resting assured that you aren’t harming the environment.
This broad-spectrum, water-resistant mineral sunscreen comes in factor 15, 30 and 50, covering all your sun protection needs. Zinc oxide and titanium dioxide provide 100% mineral protection, while extracts of antioxidant-rich Australian Kakadu and Illawarra plum protect the skin. Exotic Kahai and roucou oils, rich in omega fatty acids, are added to keep skin soft and hydrated.
Although designed for the delicate skin of little ones, this organic, reef-friendly sunscreen spray provides fuss-free sun protection for absolutely everyone. The quick and easy application ensures that both the face and body are shielded against the harmful effects of UVA and UVB rays with immediate protection. The 100% mineral-based formula contains titanium dioxide and zinc oxide to reflect the harmful rays of the sun, while nourishing and protecting oils of raspberry, pomegranate and Karanja help prevent moisture loss and free radical damage.
This high-factor water-resistant sunscreen provides the highest protection for the most sensitive skin that is prone to sunburn. Made from ingredients of 100% natural origin, this mineral sunscreen provides a high-coverage texture and is non-toxic to the marine environment. Nourishing ingredients including organic olive, apricot seed and safflower oils are added to help moisturise and protect the skin.
Odylique’s exceptionally pure all-natural sun cream is ideal for all the family, including children and babies. The first-ever sunscreen that’s both organically certified and approved by the Fairtrade Foundation, this product contains independently tested and proven broad-spectrum UVA and UVB, plus powerful antioxidants such as sea buckthorn and sunflower oil to fight free radicals and counteract the damaging effects of the sun. The non-whitening, non-greasy and non-comedogenic formula is immediately effective on application.
A unique new SPF50 sun milk for every skin type, including sensitive skin. Organii sun milk starts protecting your skin immediately after application and leaves no sticky residue. The unique recipe contains pongamol which is extracted from Karanga oil combined in a base of titanium dioxide and zinc oxide together with skin-moisturising ingredients. Pongamia Extract gives effective UVA and UVB protection and will help keep your skin protected against the harmful rays of the sun. Natural plant oils including jojoba, sunflower and argan are added to nourish and hydrate the skin.
Alba Botanica’s easy to apply spray provides broad spectrum mineral sunscreen protection which is quickly absorbed. The fragrance-free formula helps protect against sunburn, skin cancer and premature signs of ageing and is ideal for sensitive skin. Water resistant for 80 minutes, this sunscreen is free of active ingredients that may harm coral reefs.
For more cruelty-free and planet-friendly beauty, follow Vilda on Pinterest
Header image by Pexels via Pixabay.