Although they may offer excellent protection from the sun’s rays, conventional sunscreens can also provide exposure to a wide range of hazardous or irritating chemicals. When you’re shopping for a sunscreen this summer, look for a natural product that’s free of the five following ingredients:
1. Propylene Glycol: A major component of antifreeze, you’ll also find propylene glycol in sunscreen and other personal care products such as toothpaste. This hazardous substance may be irritating to the skin and can be harmful if ingested by humans or animals. Pass on this ingredient, and choose an all-natural sunscreen instead, like Kiss My Face Cool Sport Air-Powered Spray.
2. Parabens: In addition to sunscreen, parabens are found in many cosmetic and personal care products, including makeup, moisturizer, shaving cream and more. Usually listed as methylparaben, butylparaben or propylparaben, these potentially hazardous compounds can cause hormone disruption in the body by mimicking estrogen. Go paraben-free with Alba Botanica’s Hawaiian Green Tea sunscreen, which has an SPF of 45.
3. Diazalidonyl Urea: Ever get a rash from your regular sunscreen? The problem ingredient may be diazalidonyl urea. This chemical preservative acts as a formaldehyde releaser and can cause skin irritations in some individuals. A safer bet for sensitive skin is Aubrey Organics Natural Sun, which also is unscented for sensitive noses.
4. Octinoxate: This chemical is included in sunscreen formulas due to its ability to absorb UV-B rays and prevent them from penetrating your skin. Unfortunately, octinoxate may be linked to skin irritations, endocrine disruption and poor cellular health. Avoid this chemical by sticking with a natural sunscreen like Kiss My Face Sun Spray Lotion.
5. Oxybenzone: Even though you might not have heard of it, chances are there’s oxybenzone in your system. The Centers for Disease Control recently reported that 97% of Americans have detectable levels of this common sunscreen ingredient in their bodies. Oxybenzone has been linked to skin irritations, hormone disruption and low birth weight. You won’t find this ingredient in Nature’s Gate Aqua Block 50, which is great whether you’re in or outside of the pool.