Environmental Friendly Sunscreen for Healthy Skin

Environmental Friendly Sunscreen for Healthy Skin

The sun's rays can be both beneficial and harmful to our bodies. Moderate exposure to sunlight provides essential vitamin D, which boosts both physical and mental health. Sun-bathing has also helped prevent rickets symptoms and treat wounds. Nevertheless, have you ever wondered about reasons for uneven skin tone, pigmentation, freckles, or ageing dark spots? Well excessive exposure to ultraviolet rays can lead to deterioration of skin health, with risks of causing skin cancer.

On one hand, every human being wishes to have beautiful, flawless skin on a daily basis. To maintain skin health and to have a flawless skin complexion, sunscreen is one of the most crucial daily skincare routines. Bearing in mind that it only takes 30 seconds to gently massage a sunscreen emulsion or lotion on our precious body epidermis. At any time you wake up in the morning feeling tired of a skincare routine, rethink how a good practice of quality sunscreen can bring so many benefits to your health.

Sunscreen routine
Photo from Canva.com

In our previous blog article, we discussed the potential negative effects of store-bought sunscreen on both human health and water biodiversity. Indeed, many sunscreens are harmful to us and our surroundings. Thus, urging you to consider more carefully how these skincare products are made and to make the best sustainable choices based on research.

If you are looking for quick skincare protection, how can you choose the right sunscreen?

Certified Sunscreen Products

There are normally two types of sunscreens, which you can choose based on your skin type and activities. For instance, zinc oxide or titanium dioxide are common ingredients for mineral sunscreens. Also known as physical sunscreen, this type of sunscreen deflects UVA and UVB radiation with broad-spectrum protection to prevent sunburn or skin damage. It is gentle on the skin, which makes it ideal for sensitive and acne-prone skin. Physical sunscreens, which are certified to be fragrance-free, hypoallergenic, and dermatologist, are non-comedogenic to the skin pores.

Study the Ingredients

The potential effects of chemical compounds included in cheap sunscreens are detrimental in the long run. For instance, avoid chemical compounds such as oxybenzone, avobenzone, homosalate, octinoxate, octocrylene, and octisalate. These chemical compounds are not only harmful to human skin. When the layer of sunscreen disintegrates when it comes into contact with water, a chemical-based fluid is released into the environment. This normally occurs when we use sunscreen excessively at the beach or ocean. Thus, the external environment is also affected by an invisible action when sunscreen is used in the natural environment.

Choose the Right SPF Level

Next, when purchasing sunscreen, always ensure the SPF level is at a minimum of SPF30. If you are planning to get a sun tan and be exposed to the outdoors for a long period of time, a higher SPF50 is desirable. Lastly, all sunscreens should be reapplied, usually every 90 minutes, especially after sweating or going in water. Therefore, purchase a bottle of sunscreen which is easy to carry around but also contains enough volume for reapplication.

How About Making a DIY Natural Sunscreen?

Making homemade sunscreen can also be a fun family activity due to its slow DIY process. Apart from the sheer satisfaction and fun factor of engaging in DIY projects, there are more practical aspects of creating a sustainable sunscreen at home.

Home-made sunscreen
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Here are some benefits:

Avoid Chemicals

Customizing the product to your needs and preferences ensures that the best ingredients are used. You can experiment with natural ingredients, which also enhance the smell and texture. By choosing natural ingredients, you can avoid harsh chemicals or allergens that otherwise can be contained in store-bought sunscreen.

Cost-effective & Locally Sourced

The traditional practice of purchasing high-quality commercial sunscreens can sometimes put a dent in our monthly expenses. Well, more budget-friendly alternatives are available with DIY sunscreen recipes. Moreover, if you use organic and natural ingredients, you are supporting the local community working in the botanical fields or natural oils sector. By doing so, it promotes a sustainable ecosystem in the local community where artisan nature products and environmentally friendly products are advocated.

Protecting the Environment

Engaging in a DIY sunscreen project safeguards the environment, namely, water biodiversity. Chemicals contained in mainstream sunscreens can have adverse effects on water biodiversity, leading even to their banning in certain biodiversity-rich places. DIY sunscreen recipes use eco-friendly ingredients that are biodegradable.

Combining Fun & Education

Last but not least, it is a fun and educational activity. Sustainable DIY projects can be an opportunity for both kids and parents to discuss and learn about sustainability. In this case, to understand how to think critically about what we buy and use. Starting to engage with these conversations and performing a green action are good transformational habits. Beyond the fun side and educational information during the activity, making sunscreen on a weekend can bring together friends and family to reconnect.

Sunscreen DIY Recipe

Important Disclaimer: We would like to underline before presenting the recipe that DIY sunscreen recipes might not offer the same level of broad-spectrum protection for prolonged direct exposure to UV radiation. It is necessary to conduct additional research to fully understand the limitations of such a product. Furthermore, prior to testing the product, make sure that you are not allergic to any of the ingredients. Conduct a small-patch test by applying the finished product to a small area on your skin.

Sunscreen DIY Recipe
Photo from Canva.com

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (has an SPF of 7)
  • 2 (or more) tbsp. powdered zinc oxide
  • 1/4 cup pure aloe vera gel (preferably 50% or higher)
  • 25 drops of walnut extract oil for scent and an added SPF boost
  • 1 cup (or less) shea butter for a spreadable consistency

Instructions:

  1. Combine all ingredients, except the zinc oxide and aloe vera gel, in a medium saucepan. Let the shea butter and oils melt together at medium heat. You may choose a selection of organic oils here.
  2. Let cool for several minutes before stirring in aloe vera gel.
  3. Cool completely before adding zinc oxide. Mix well to make sure the zinc oxide is distributed throughout. You may want to add some beeswax, a fruity body cream, or a thickening agent for a stickier consistency.

Store in a glass jar, and keep in a cool, dry place until you’re ready to use.

(Note: You can find the ingredients in pharmacies, bio/organic shops or online.)

How To Prevent White Casting On Your Skin?

If you are making DIY sunscreen, don't forget to add a tinge of a foundation liquid or powder to make a tinted sunscreen. This prevents white casting on the skin. Tinted sunscreens blend with your skin tone, minimizing uneven skin look. If you are purchasing commercial quality sunscreens, search for nano or micronized formulations whereby the particles of the ingredients are small not leaving any white residue.

Next, there are application procedures to follow which can ensure that the skin tone absorbs the sunscreen evenly. Always apply thin layers of sunscreen, and slowly add more layers when necessary. Instead of applying a large amount all at once, apply the sunscreen thinly with a light touch. Then, always allow each layer to absorb for at least 2 minutes before applying another layer. This procedure is important for cases when you need to apply sunscreen for long outdoor activities. Another way of preventing clogs and uneven application of sunscreen is to apply it with a damp beauty blender or sponge. Now you are aware that it is possible to achieve a flawless skin look with protected sunscreen, worrying about looking pale or too white can be solved.

You Will Never Regret Settling For Good Skincare Practices

Creating your own DIY sunscreen can be a rewarding and cost-effective alternative to commercial products. While it's essential to understand the limitations of homemade sunscreens, DIY options offer customization, eco-friendliness, and a chance to explore natural skincare ingredients. Remember, you will feel the amazing results of protecting your skin from ageing signs and unhealthy skin tone by using a high-quality sunscreen. Whether you opt to make your sunscreen or are thinking of ways to choose a good skincare product, keep in mind the ingredients and labels.

We will continue to share more useful DIY projects with you.


Ariel

Hi, I am Ariel Toh. Trained in sustainability research from academic institutes, I take meticulous detail to article write-ups. By working with like-minded professionals and companies, I believe we can harness "more sustainability" in the world. 

Aleesya

Hi, I'm Aleesya Karim from Malaysia. If I could be a tree, I'd choose to be a coconut tree. Their incredible usefulness, even after they've passed, is genuinely cool. So, I hope my articles can be my fruit or leaf offerings for your green journey ;)

 

Shalika

Hello, I'm Shalika Suriyampola. Growing up in Canada, I spent most of my childhood in nature and became passionate about Climate Change as well as our consumption waste at a young age. I hope reading my articles helps change everyone’s mindsets about the environment!

 


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Article also published in our founder's blog: My Shade of Green