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Summer = lots and lots of sunshine. This also means lots and lots of sunburn, and nobody has time for that. We are huge proponents of skincare and really wanted to get down to the basics today! Yep, I’m talking about sunscreen. Everyone and their mother will tell you that it’s crucial to apply sunscreen on a daily basis. But when it comes to picking your products, are all sunscreens created equally? We’re diving into why we switched over to natural, organic sunscreen and are also sharing some of the best mineral sunscreens on the market!
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Mineral Sunscreen vs Chemical Sunscreen; What’s the difference?
Mineral (Physical) sunscreen and chemical sunscreen are both effective in shielding the skin from the sun. But, they work in different ways. Just a heads up, the FDA approved both chemical and mineral sunscreen ingredients as safe and effective on the skin.
The main difference is the active ingredients in each category and how they work. The active ingredients in mineral sunscreen are zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. These are the only organic active ingredients that are FDA approved. In chemical sunscreen, the active ingredients include oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate, octocrylene, homosalate, and octinoxate.
Let’s dive into how these ingredients work. When used as directed, mineral sunscreen ingredients form a protective barrier on the surface of the skin that absorbs and reflects UV rays away from the skin. Chemical sunscreen is absorbed by the top of the skin and it absorbs the UV rays. See, they’re pretty different!
Why should you switch to Mineral (Physical) Sunscreen?
Chemical sunscreens are formulated with hormone-disrupting materials, irritants, and allergens that mineral sunscreens don’t have. Active ingredients in chemical sunscreen can cause redness, breakouts, irritation, and sensitivity to some people. Especially if you have sensitive skin.
Mineral sunscreens, on the other hand, typically include zinc, which calms the skin instead of irritating it. It also starts working immediately, unlike chemical SPF which may take up to 30 minutes to become effective.
Non-toxic, mineral sunscreens are also better for the environment! Two common chemical sunscreen ingredients (oxybenzone and octinoxate) were banned last year in Hawaii because they destroy marine life, especially coral. With such an adverse effect on the environment, imagine what chemical sunscreen is doing to our skin!
What are the negatives of Mineral Sunscreen?
Chemical sunscreens are typically lighter and blend better, whereas, mineral sunscreen may take longer to absorb. The mineral formula is generally more thick and chalky. It may also leave a whitish tinge, especially on dark skin. It tends to sweat, rub, or rinse off quickly, so for full effectiveness, it would need to be reapplied more frequently. Also, if you don’t apply it generously, it may not be as powerful.
Most importantly, sun protection is important. Whether you choose mineral or chemical sunscreen, having some layer of protection is a step in the right direction.
The Best Mineral Sunscreen Options at Every Price Point
My favorite mineral sunscreen!!
Note: This product contains a combination of mineral and chemical active ingredients!
Always consult with your dermatologist before making drastic skincare changes!!