Picking out a sunscreen can be so confusing. Have you ever tried to read the back of a sunscreen bottle? There are a lot of big words. So let's make it easier for you. The healthiest sunscreens need to be free of Parabens, Phthalates, PEG’s (polyethylene glycols), Propylene Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, SLS/SLES, and other chemicals I won’t bother listing but basically, they should contain a considerable amount of natural ingredients. The sunscreen ingredient I mainly recommend avoiding is the synthetic chemical oxybenzone. Oxybenzone is an endocrine disruptor which can affect the nervous system, has been linked to cancer in some laboratory studies, and creates free-radicals when exposed to the sun which are harmful. I prefer Zinc Oxide over Titanium Dioxide. There have been some studies done that could classify Titanium Dioxide as carcinogenic to humans. I spend a lot of time in my office over the summer detoxing people of titanium so best to stay away!
Micronized vs Nano: There have been many reports that micronized vs. nano particles of titanium dioxide or zinc oxide have the ability to pass through the skin more easily (which is why they aren’t as white as others). There is also a concern that nano titanium dioxide/zinc oxide particles have higher photo-reactivity than coarser particles and may generate free radicals that can cause cell damage. Some manufacturers have addressed this issue by coating the particles to prevent free radical formation. I am comfortable recommending sunscreens with Micronized zinc (most natural zinc sunscreens ARE). NANO zinc or titanium is something I feel should be avoided.
So after all my research I think
ECO FORMULA SPF 30+ by Raw Elements wins!
Protection: SPF 30+
Active Ingredient: Non-nano Zinc Oxide 23%
I really like this sunscreen and just started using it this season. It has a thicker consistency but spreads very easily and the whiteness factor is minimum. This is great for swimming, heavy sweating, or water play and the ingredients are as good as it gets: Organic Sunflower Oil, Organic Green Tea, Organic Black Tea, Organic Hemp Seed Oil, Organic Cocoa Butter, All Natural Mango Butter, Organic Beeswax, All Natural Rosemary Oil Extract, All Natural Vitamin E.
If you have a natural one that you love please let me know! I'm always interested in what patients try and like. If you have one you are not sure of bring it in and we can muscle test it to see what your body says.