Then there are the complete posers: moisturizers and foundations who say they have sunscreen protection. That’s like saying toddlers can walk. I mean, yeah, they can, but they can’t do it properly. They are totally flaky. They’re like fair-weather friends: as soon as you start sweating over something, they’re gone.
And then there is the Nano Particle gang. These kids sound so hip and high-tech, but they’re not as great as they think. Take nano zinc oxide, descendant of the great-grandfather of sunblocks, oxidized mineral zinc, whose old-fashioned sunscreens created a thick, white paste on your nose and face. Nano zinc oxide may not make you look like a clown but it seeps into your skin, entering your bloodstream and the rest of your body!
I know what you’re saying: you gotta do what you gotta do, and that includes hitting the beach and swimming in the sea. Short of wearing a big floppy hat and long-sleeve shirt (which are still the most effective ways to protect your precious skin—try a lightweight UV-blocking rash-guard when snorkeling or surfing), we sunscreens are essential for protecting you from UVA & B sunlight. The sad truth is simply that a lot of us are into some hard-core chemicals that may be bad for both you and marine life.
So read up about sunblocks that are biodegradable, reef safe, and protect your skin, including those with vegetable-based homosalate and octocrylene or good ol’ zinc oxide. Not all of us are backstabbers; some of us are really here to help! And there’s information about us everywhere. Check out the gallery below for some friendly options.
And, if anyone asks, you didn’t hear it from me.
Shiseido Perfect UV Protector SPF50+ PA++++ WetForce reinforces the UV-protective veil when it comes into contact with water or perspiration.
Alba Botanica Sensitive Sunscreen Fragrance Free Lotion SPF 30 contains 100% vegetarian ingredients, no synthetic fragrances, and no artificial colors.
Banana Boat® Baby Natural Reflect™ Lotion SPF 50 is formulated with active ingredients sourced from 100% natural minerals.
All Badger sunscreen creams and lotions are non-GMO, cruelty-free, biodegradable, and safe for coral reefs and other marine ecosystems.
Just Gentle Baby and Kids Sun Protection SPF 50 PA ++ uses only naturally-sourced sunscreen ingredients plus nourishing organic aloe vera and shea butter.
Lancome UV Expert Youth Shield™ Aqua Gel contains active ingredients that protects the skin from UV rays and air pollutants.
Clinique Sun Broad Spectrum SPF 50 Sunscreen Face Cream contains solar-activated antioxidants that help prevent visible damage and offers broad spectrum protection.
La Roche-Posay Anthelios Dermo-Pediatrics Wet Skin Gel Lotion SPF50+ is safe and mild enough to be used on children's sensitive skin, and can be applied on wet skin.