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Is Sunscreen Toxic?

We've all heard of the significant importance of sunscreen's role in protecting us from too much sun exposure. However, did you know that many commercial sunscreens contain a wide variety of toxic ingredients? Some just may hold the potential to do more harm than good.  The ironic thing is the very issue of concern (skin cancer) is what these toxic mass-produced sunscreens could be contributing to.

Potentially toxic chemicals that may be lurking in your sunscreen:

  • Para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA), including octyl-dimethyl PABA

  • Benzophenones, especially benzophenone-3, Oxybenzone

  • Cinnamates, namely octyl-methoxycinnamate (OMC)

  • Homosalate

  • 4-methyl-benzylidene camphor (4-MBC)

Did you know there are other ways to protect your skin from overexposure without the use of harsh chemicals? New SPF-like UV clothing, such as and can help with layers of protection. Also, mother nature provides us with a few natural oils to offer skin protection (at varying levels of SPF).

Get sun protection without the toxins

Be sure to read your sunscreen labels. Try to avoid buying sunscreens containing toxic chemicals, such as those found in the above list. A few brands to try: Kiss My Face, Lily of The Dessert, Badger, Alba, Babo Botanicals, Coola ( & Sun Bum (

Natural alternatives to traditional sunscreens that feature some SPF protection:

Shea Butter

This rich butter has an SPF of about 6 to 8, which is perfect for low sun levels or people with naturally dark skin. It works wonders on dry skin and eczema!

Coconut Oil

This silky oil can provide an SPF of 8 to 10. Even though this isn’t a very high SPF, multiple applications can provide extra moisture and prevent skin from burning.

Carrot Seed Oil

This nourishing oil has an SPF of 35 to 40. Its therapeutic benefits include antioxidants and high levels of Vitamin A. Make sure to use it with a carrier oil before applying, such as coconut oil or red raspberry seed oil.

Red Raspberry Seed (excerpt from

"This one is one of the most popular oils for SPF and can have a range of 28 – 50 (depending on the oil’s quality). Red raspberry oil is actually close to the equivalent of the protection you would receive from titanium dioxide, found in most mineral sunscreens. The essential fatty acids and host of antioxidants in this oil are also great for other skin healing purposes including eczema and psoriasis. Red Raspberry Seed Oil protects against UV & UVB rays."


I believe in the sun's healing power, so some sun-kissing on our bodies I trust to be a good thing, granting us warmth and vitamin D. However...

Disclaimer: I am not suggesting that you need not protect yourself from sun exposure. Indeed, too much sun exposure can cause skin damage and increase the risk of skin cancers. I encourage you to be mindful of your sun-time and be sure to apply protective methods to care for your skin and well being.

How do you protect your precious skin from UV rays?

In Grace & Health,





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