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Why Use a Zinc Based Sunscreen?

Posted by Bill DAlessandro on

Summer is here, and with that comes protecting ourselves from the sun. But did you know that not all sunscreens are created equal?

It’s pretty simple. Suncreens can be either chemically based or mineral based. Chemically based sunscreen often contain oxybenzone, and mineral based sunscreen generally use zinc. The problem is, that oxybenzone is considered a toxic ingredient.

Here are some research findings about oxybenzone:

  • Oxybenzone is a penetration enhancer, meaning it can help other chemicals absorb into your body (Pont 2004)
  • Oxybenzone has also been linked to disrupting hormone function, in men and women (Kunz 2006; van Liempd 2007)
  • Oxybenzone has been found to be the source of allergic reactions of the skin (Bryden 2006)
  • The Environmental Working Group (EWG), rates oxybenzone an 8 on their toxicity scale, which is extremely high

But if it is so dangerous, why is it still sold in stores? Turns out, the last safety review by the FDA was conducted in the 1970s. As a result, sunscreen manufacturers are able to use oxybenzone and other chemicals as long as they follow the 1970 guidelines.

For now, these sunscreens will stay on the shelves. But as a consumer you can make a choice. Find a zinc based sunscreen rather than a chemical based sunscreen. Zinc, a mineral found in most natural sunscreens, is more natural, far less toxic, and extremely effective at blocking the sun. It is also the only active ingredient approved by the FDA for children under 6 months.

That is why here at Nurture My Body we only use zinc in our Organic Sunscreen .

Our Organic Sunscreen also:

Uses non-nano zinc oxide. We never use nano-sized particles that can cross into the bloodstream.

Is fragrance-free and non-comedogenic.

Provides 97% UVA and UVB absorption across the entire broad spectrum.

Is biodegradable formula is safe for use around fragile reefs and aquatic environments.

Consumer choices can be confusing, and often overwhelming, but choosing a product with natural, mineral-based ingredients, like zinc, will keep you and your kids protected from the sun, and also protected from dangerous chemicals.

Enjoy your summer!


Bryden AM, Moseley H, Ibbotson SH, Chowdhury MM, Beck MH, Bourke J, et al. 2006. Photopatch testing of 1155 patients: results of the U.K. multicentre photopatch study group. The British journal of dermatology 155(4): 737-747.

Kunz PY, Galicia HF, Fent K. 2006. Comparison of in vitro and in vivo estrogenic activity of UV filters in fish. Toxicol Sci 90(2): 349-361.

Pont AR, Charron AR, Brand RM. 2004. Active ingredients in sunscreens act as topical penetration enhancers for the herbicide 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid. Toxicol Appl Pharmacol 195(3): 348-354.

Van Liempd SM, Kool J, Meerman JH, Irth H, Vermeulen NP. 2007. Metabolic profiling of endocrine-disrupting compounds by on-line cytochrome p450 bioreaction coupled to on-line receptor affinity screening. Chemical research in toxicology 20(12): 1825-1832.

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