Green sunscreens can help prevent skin cancer while reducing pollution and your exposure to dangerous chemicals.
Natural sunscreen offers an alternative for those looking to go green and keep their skin protected from the harmful effects of the sun. More than 2 million people per year are diagnosed with some form of skin cancer, many of these skin cancers could have been prevented with basic protection from the sun’s ultraviolet rays. It is important for people of all races and skin color to use sunscreen, regardless of any urban myths you may have encountered about a particular race. While most of us think about using sunscreen at the beach or poolside, it should be used year round, especially when considering that snow can reflect up to 80% of the ultraviolet rays, intensifying the harmful effects.
All sunscreens sold in the U.S. are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as an over the counter (OTC) drug. The FDA is in charge of making sure that the products are safe for consumers and by June of 2012, you will see updated labeling requirements hitting the shelves. The labels should indicate if it protects against UVA and/or UVB rays, and whether it protects against skin cancer and early aging or just sunburn prevention. Once you have your basic protections covered, you can review the labeling to make sure you are choosing a natural sunscreen also known as green sunscreen.
Sunscreens are split into a couple of different categories, one being chemical based and the other being mineral based. For a natural sunscreen selection, we recommend the mineral based sunscreens, which use zinc oxide or titanium oxide as the active ingredients. Making sure your green sunscreen is organic by looking for the USDA Organic Seal is also a safe bet that you are on your way to going green and not red. Finally, think about purchasing your natural sunscreen in large bulk containers and pouring it into small reusable travel containers, this will reducing packaging waste. Just don’t buy so much that you won’t use it all within a year or two as many ingredients will lose their effectiveness over time.
As part of any sustainable lifestyle, using green products whenever you can, such as natural sunscreen, will help you keep the environment clean for generations to come. Protect yourself from the sun’s powerful and potentially harmful rays by using an SPF-30 sunscreen anytime you are planning on being outdoors. Just remember that before you pick up the bottle, tube, stick or spray that you check the label to make sure it is a green sunscreen so you can protect yourself and Mother Earth at the same time.