Sun smart

  • June 15, 2017
  • By Kathy@MoreCoffeeLessTalky

We've been having amazing hot weather...summer is finally here!  A lot of time is spent outdoors soaking up the sun and doing some yard work which required me to slather on sunscreen because fuck cancer and wrinkles.  Although we need sunscreen to protect us from the harmful rays, I'm concerned about all of the toxins contained in many of them ..... just think - we rub that stuff on and our skin absorbs it into our bodies. In addition, some of the chemicals used are really strong and can severely affect those with sensitive skin.  Did you read about that poor baby who suffered chemical burns from sunscreen?  Just seeing that picture of the baby's face makes me cringe.

So in an effort to avoid harmful chemicals as much as possible, I've been using mineral-based sunscreen for years.  Here are my favourites:

Eminence Organics.

If you want a luxurious, incredible-smelling mineral-based sunscreen that protects well, spreads easily and leaves zero white cast, this is it.  This is so great that I can even use this on my face and it doesn't clog or sting my sensitive skin.  It spreads easily and doesn't turn me into casper.  The only drawback is the cost - $52 for this tube so I refuse to let Kayla use it (sorry girl, you have to use the $19 ThinkSport) and tried to use it as sparingly as possible.  I don't mind spending money on quality products but even I think this is a bit much.

For daily use (ie. running errands, work etc), I turn to my tinted moisturizer.  It comes in 3 shades and I use the Caramel one because I'm medium toned.  I've tried a lot of tinted moisturizers with SPF and this is the only one that doesn't dry out my skin nor does it feel 'cakey'; in fact, it gives me a soft matte finish with just a hint of sun-kissed colour.

I discovered this sunscreen about 2 weeks ago and I'm in love.  This is the only natural sunscreen (other than my Eminence) that doesn't smell like crap; this one has a light citrus scent, spreads easily and absorbs quickly. It doesn't leave a garish white cast, is amazing for sensitive skin and doesn't clog pores.  Again with the price - expensive!  for this 3oz tube, it's $20 and for the 6oz it's $35....not as expensive as Eminence so I'll be buying this from now on.

Green Beaver.

The lips on your skin is the same around your eyes - really thin and sensitive and people often forget to protect them.  Have you ever burned your lips? I have and it's awful so to avoid that, I use this lip balm on top of my regular lip balm.  Although it's a small SPF, I haven't been burned since I started using this years ago and it's protected my lips even through 8hrs of blazing Florida Disney World sun. There's no taste and more importantly, doesn't dry my lips and best of all, it's cheap $6!

Other ways to stay sun smart/stay cool during the hot temps:
  • Don't rely just on sunscreen - stay in the shade as much as possible.
  • Wear sunglasses and a wide-rim hat.
  • Don't forget to slather sunscreen onto your neck and chest area; those are the two areas where the skin sagging is most evident.
  • Don't forget the tops of your hands (and reapply after every wash) and tops of your feet. 
  • Lots and lots of water. If you're doing excessive exercise (or yard work), use an electrolyte. I like this natural one from Skratch Labs - light, citrus taste and not overly sweet.
  • Watermelon or cucumber cools your internal temperature fast.  I've already gone through 2 watermelons in the past week.

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  1. This is great. I'm always looking for more chemical free/safer sunscreens. I think this summer I'll buy a rash guard as well. I'm SO fair skinned. Watermelon is my summer life line. And pineapple and coconut. A newer restaurant in my city has the yummiest coconut/pineapple rum drink. Oh lord. It's like a tropical smoothie... dangerous, but surprisingly cooling in the heat. It's too hot for me here already.... pushing close to 100 degrees daily. Ew. XO - Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things

  2. Right now I'm really loving Alba Botanica and Suntegrity for sunscreen, both great companies (cruelty free and no nasty ingredients!) But I've actually only been putting it on my face. My vitamin d levels are so low my hair has been falling out again. Because you're supposed to spend 30 min a day in the sun without sunscreen. I'm like... 10 min before I have to peace out. Hate the sun. Should have been a vampire.

  3. I always forget the tops of my hands and feet, and they always get burned. I think I'm going to try out that ThinkSport for Sheffield! I hate to think of him having to deal with a nasty sunburn.

  4. I am about to order the Thinkbaby for Zoe for the beach. I used Babyganics on me last summer at the beach and I got splotchy burns but I think it was because my pregnancy hormones messed with everything so bad! I like Cotz for my face and have had amazing success with it the last two years so I got a big bottle of that. It is the only one that doesnt burn my eyes when I sweat, or break my face out. I love the idea of the eminence one but I cant bring myself to pay that much for sunscreen!!! I will have to try that lip stuff! I have a sample of supergoop right now and I like it, but it tastes like sunscreen on my mouth and I dont like that aspect.

  5. Thanks for the recommendations, Kathy. I always have trouble with sunscreen for my face. It's either horribly drying or turns my face white, which it is not. :D I'm definitely going to check out the tinted moisturizer.

  6. We've been using Blue Lizard since Erica was a baby and it is the best sunscreen I've ever used. I don't know that it's as skin friendly or toxin free as what you've shared but it is amazing. The bottle even changes color to let you know that there's harmful UV rays and you know to reapply.

  7. Love all of this! Sun protection is so important, but so is checking to see what these sunscreens are made of. Enjoy all that wonderful heat, hands down the best time of year :-D

  8. I can be terrible about this stuff, I hardly wear sunscreen unless I'm planning to be outdoors for a long time. Even then I sometimes "forget" it. I need to start taking this shit seriously or I'm gonna look like an old troll soon. I trust your judgement on brands, our chemical hating souls are one.

  9. I bought a new sunscreen this year and so far I'm loving it. It's called Sun Bum and it's cruelty free and it smells so good and I just love it. Fortunately, my make-up also has 15 to 30 spf, too, so I have coverage on my face as well! It's my lips that I always forget about! =/

  10. I burn pretty much right away so I've always got sunscreen on my face, although I'm still looking for the perfect moisturizer with sunscreen. That one you listed sounds perfect but I don't know if I can get it in the US. Right now I'm using up some Neutrogena I had from last year but won't be getting it again. I try to buy cruelty free if I can. I'm all about lip balm with SPF, too. I get cold sores if I let my lips go unprotected in the sun :/.