Zinc sunscreens. What, Why and How?
Sunscreen is essential to protect your skin from harmful UV rays, especially if you spend a lot of time outside. But did you know that not all sunscreens are created equal? Many traditional sunscreens contain toxic chemicals that can be harmful not only to your health, but also to the environment. Fortunately, there are mineral sunscreens on the market that offer a safe and effective option.
What Are Mineral Sunscreens?
Mineral sunscreens contain active ingredients such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, which work by blocking the UV rays rather than absorbing them. Traditional chemical sunscreens, on the other hand, work by absorbing the radiation and converting it into heat, which can lead to oxidative stress and premature aging of the skin.
Why should you choose a mineral sunscreen?
There are several reasons why you should opt for a mineral sunscreen over a traditional chemical one.
First, many traditional chemical filters contain substances such as oxybenzone and octinoxate, which are absorbed into our skin and can potentially disrupt hormones. These chemicals are also leached into the water when we swim, which can be harmful to marine life. In fact, some countries have already introduced laws to ban these chemicals completely.
Second, mineral sunscreens are safe for the coral reef and other marine organisms. Many traditional sunscreens contain oxybenzone, which inhibits coral growth and damages the DNA of coral cells, making them more susceptible to bleaching. By choosing a mineral sunscreen you not only help to protect your own skin, but also the underwater life.
Third, mineral filters provide better protection against UVA and UVB radiation than chemical filters. Chemical filters can break under the influence of heat and light, while mineral filters remain stable in the sun. Mineral filters also provide immediate protection when applied to the skin, while chemical filters take 20 minutes to become effective.
Fourth, mineral sunscreens often provide additional skin benefits. They can be moisturizing, feel silky smooth, leave no white cast and be water resistant for up to 80 minutes. Some brands even package their product in aluminum cans to reduce plastic waste.
What types of mineral sunscreens are there?
There are different types of mineral sunscreens on the market that are suitable for different skin types and activities. Below are some popular options:
- Zinc Oxide: Zinc oxide is one of the most commonly used active ingredients in mineral sunscreens. It provides broad spectrum protection against UVA and UVB rays and is safe for the coral reef.
- Titanium Dioxide: Titanium dioxide is another common active ingredient in mineral sunscreens. It also provides broad spectrum protection against UV rays, but some people find that it leaves a white cast on the skin.
- Tinted: Tinted mineral sunscreens can help reduce the white cast sometimes associated with mineral filters. They're also useful if you're looking for extra coverage or as a makeup base.
- Sports: Sports formulas are often more water resistant than other types of mineral sunscreens and can last longer during physical activities such as surfing, sailing, skating and outdoor sports.
How do you apply mineral sunscreen?
Mineral sunscreen may feel different from traditional chemical varieties because it is not fully absorbed into the skin. This means it's important to apply it properly to ensure you get full protection. Here are some tips:
1. Apply generously: use about a teaspoon per body part (e.g. one for each leg, two for your back).
2. Apply 15 minutes before going outside to allow for absorption.
3. Continue to lubricate regularly: reapply every two hours or after swimming or sweating.
4. Don't forget to protect your face, ears and neck.
If you're looking for a safe and effective way to protect your skin from the sun, consider a mineral sunscreen. These contain no toxic chemicals, are safe for the coral reef and provide excellent protection against UVA and UVB rays. They often feel silky smooth, moisturise the skin and do not leave a white cast. By choosing a mineral sunscreen you are not only doing something good for yourself, but also for the environment.
Happinesz sunscreens are ideal for sports activities because they are extreme water resistant, are available in 3 tints and are made with Zinc Oxide giving it the maximum broadband UVA and UVB Sunray protection.