11 Jun 2018 best summer sunscreen
Natural skin and cleaning products have been a part of my lifestyle for over a decade. I have been committed to this for two reasons. First, it’s more environmentally friendly. Secondly, it’s important to me to reduce my family’s exposure to toxins. However, if you are also a user of natural products you know first hand that not all products are created equally. I have wasted more money than I’d like to admit on natural products that didn’t work. Well, no more! I’ve got you covered. This month I’m sharing my lessons learned and my top personal picks for sunscreen this summer.
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) is my go-to, watch-dog source for beauty, skin, and cleaning products. According to their latest sunscreen report, “Sunscreens using zinc oxide and titanium dioxide tend to rate well in our analysis. They are stable in sunlight, offer a good balance between protection from the two types of ultraviolet radiation – UVA and UVB – and don’t often contain potentially harmful additives.” The only downside of the EWG site is they do not rate quality or customer satisfaction. So here we go with some of my favorite, EWG approved sunscreens for 2018.
Everyday Facial Sunscreen
Suntegrity 5 in 1 Natural Moisturizing Face Sunscreen, SPF 30.
Rated 1 (best score) by EWG.org
Suntegrity’s Facial SPF comes both in a tinted or primer version. I have personally used and love the tinted version. The finish is matte and goes on very smooth. It is both light weight and moisturizing. I can put it on in the morning and go all day and my make up (if I’m wearing it over the SPF) will still look great. It comes in 5 different shades. Select shades below for the links to each product for an overview:
Fair , Light , Golden Light , Medium , or Deep Bronze tinted moisturizer / SPF are available. If you are unsure which color will work best for you, Suntegrity offers sample tubes. Simply order directly from their site.
Everyday Body Sunscreen
Blue Lizard Sensitive, SPF 30+
Rated a 1 (best score) by EWG.org
I love this sunscreen because it rubs in easily and does not leave a white coat on your skin (like many mineral sunscreens). Both zinc oxide and titanium dioxide are the active sunscreen ingredients used in this product. Blue Lizard also comes in a bottle that will turn blue in UV light, which is a great reminder to slather it on when the bottle is blue. This sunscreen is a staple in our house, which is why I like to have a few bottles on hand.
Badger Active, SPF 30
Rated 1 (best score) by EWG.org
This 100% zinc oxide SPF goes on thick and stays on. Warning: it will leave a white tint on your face/body. I prefer the baby version over the other Badger products. This version stays on well plus it smells good and spreads easily on the skin. We will use this sunscreen before getting in the water or sweating outdoors. Perfect examples include before heading to the pool, swimming in the ocean, or exercising outdoors. I would highly recommend applying 30 minutes before getting in the water, not 30 seconds before – so be prepared if you like this option.
Babo Botanicals Sheer Zinc Spray, SPF 30
The Honest Company Honest Sunscreen Spray, SPF 30
Rated 3 by EWG.org
Full disclosure: I personally do not like to use spay sunscreens. It may be because my kiddos are still young enough that I can go the old-fashioned lotion route. However, if you have family members that will not wear sunscreen unless it’s sprayed on, than here are two great options! Both Babo & The Honest Company offer a mineral-based spray sunscreen. Both rank a 3 out of 10 on the EWG.org site and rank in the green (=good) for both health concerns and UVA/UVB coverage balance. A rating of 3 is the lowest available product rating for spray sunscreens. Alba, Goddess Garden, Bare Republic, and Coola also offer spray sunscreens that rate a 3. For comparison purposes, many of the Coppertone, Banana Boat, Australian Gold, Neutrogena, and CVS brand spray sunscreens rate a 7+ (although some versions of these brands are rated lower) on EWG.org.
Finally, every year EWG offers a sunscreen sample box. See the image below for last year’s (2017) samples. For a small donation, they will send a sample box directly to your home. This is a great option especially if you have sensitive skin. It provides you with the ability to trial several options to find one that’s right for you.
For more information on all things sunscreen, check out the Environmental Working Group’s 2018 guide to sunscreen.