We all have that one story about falling asleep on the beach before applying sunscreen and waking up as a red as a lobster. It’s painful and not to mention dangerous. Cancer Research UK states, “Getting a sunburn, just once every two years, can triple your risk of melanoma skin cancer.”
But before you reach for the SPF 30 you found on the top shelf of your medicine cabinet, consider what’s in it. The FDA fully deems only two sunscreen ingredients as safe to use: zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. They’re both minerals that act as physical blockers, which means they sit on the surface of the skin and reflect UV rays, rather than seeping into skin. Another reason to opt for mineral over chemical? An FDA study conducted this month found that after a single application, seven chemicals commonly found in sunscreens were absorbed into the skin at levels deemed as unsafe by the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.
OK, so mineral sunscreen it is. And according to the EWG, “the form of zinc oxide most often used in sunscreens provides greater UVA protection than do the titanium dioxide products that appear clear on skin.” In short, you’re better off with zinc oxide, as it features more well-rounded protection against all UV rays.
This summer, rest assured that you’re protected from the sun with these 14 zinc oxide sunscreens that won’t leave you covered in a chalky, white cast.