Updated: May 17, 2020
There has been much ado about mineral sunscreens and all that buzz needs to be heeded. Why? Simply because the chemicals that are found in chemical sunscreens seep into our bloodstream.
Yes, you read that right.
Chemical Sunscreens and Your Body
A recent study by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) confirmed this fact. According to the FDA, if a sunscreen chemical exceeds a blood concentration of 0.5ng/mL, this indicates potential concerns with that ingredient. Therefore, it should undergo further “nonclinical toxicology assessment including systemic carcinogenicity and additional developmental and reproductive studies.”
The FDA study included 24 healthy participants with a medium age of 35 years. They were divided into four subgroups with each group trying a specific form of chemical sunscreen: two sprays, one lotion, and one cream. Researchers applied sunscreen on the participants four times a day for four days and collected 30 blood samples over a seven-day period.
The results were astounding. Blood concentrations greater than 0.5ng/mL were found for all chemical sunscreen ingredients that were tested, including avobenzone, oxybenzone, and octocrylene. And this was just after the first day of application.
Why should we care? For starters, because the thought of having chemicals seep into your bloodstream is unnerving. Especially when it concerns a product that should be used daily to protect your skin from the harmful UVB and UVA rays.
Is there a safer alternative? Yes!
Think zinc oxide and titanium dioxide! Here are 8 reasons why you should ditch the chemicals and make the move to a mineral sunscreen.
Chemicals used in chemical sunscreens absorb into the body and can be found in urine samples, breast milk and blood samples. Chemical sunscreens include octinoxate, avobenzone, oxybenzone, homosalate and octocrylene.
Octinoxate and oxybenzone are both endocrine disruptors, meaning that they negatively affect hormones.
Oxybenzone along with octocrylene, avobenzone and PABA are associated with allergic skin rashes.
Octinoxate and oxybenzone are also environmental contaminants since they have been found to contribute to coral bleaching when washed off in the ocean.
Chemical sunscreens penetrate into the skin and absorb most UV radiation, converting it to heat energy. Chemical filters are changed by this process in that they break down, reducing their UV protection. In addition, the change in chemical composition also releases free radicals.
Zinc oxide and titanium dioxide are natural minerals that sit on top of the skin and work by reflecting, scattering and absorbing UV rays. They are also known as a “physical barriers” which means that, contrary to their chemical counterparts, they don’t enter the skin.
Mineral sunscreens are broad-spectrum, protecting the skin from both UVA and UVB rays. Chemical sunscreens offer an either/or scenario because they can’t adequately block both types of rays.
According to the Canadian Dermatology Association, those with sensitive skin should opt for “chemical-free” sunscreens to avoid skin irritation. Mineral sunscreens contain no chemicals and, therefore, are ideally suited for all skin types including sensitive skin.
With mineral sunscreen’s broad-spectrum protection and chemical-free ingredients, you can practice safe sun with a solid peace of mind.
All of AlumierMD’s broad-spectrum sunscreens are mineral-based.
So, go ahead and try:
What: Clear Shield Broad Spectrum Sunscreen SPF 42 Skin Type: All Skin Types, including Oily Skin/Acne/Rosacea Prone Why: This is a lightweight, non-comedogenic, quick-drying physical sunscreen that provides powerful broad-spectrum protection against harmful UVA and UVB rays using a combination of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. Niacinamide soothes and relieves redness and sodium hyaluronate hydrates. This formula is also packed with free-radical-quenching antioxidants, including a stable vitamin C, resveratrol, grape seed extract, and glutathione.
What: Sheer Hydration Sunscreen SPF 40 in Untinted/Versatile Tint Skin Type: Dry/Normal/Combination Why: This is a silky and sheer physical sunscreen that provides powerful broad-spectrum protection against harmful UVA and UVB rays. It uses a combination of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide while moisturizing with vitamin E. This formula is also packed with free-radical-quenching antioxidants, including a stable vitamin C, resveratrol, grape seed extract, and glutathione.
What: Moisture Matte Sunscreen SPF 40 Ivory/ Sand/Amber Skin Type: Normal/Combination/Oily Skin Why: It provides powerful broad-spectrum protection against harmful UVA and UVB rays using a combination of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. Antioxidants like caffeine, silybin and knotgrass extract protect skin from UV-induced free radical damage. This formula lightly moisturizes to smooth and hydrate, while absorbing excess oil to create a matte finish. Cutting-edge, color-encapsulated beads blend on the skin, creating a sheer tint and healthy glow.