One of the major concerns with sunscreen today is that it is often loaded with toxic chemicals. However, there are ways you can protect your skin from the sun's damaging UV rays without all of the harmful chemicals that can seep into the skin. After all, why would you want to instigate skin cell damage with toxins when that is the very thing you are trying to protect your skin from when putting on sunscreen?
Most commercial sunscreen lotions and creams today contain a cocktail of toxic chemicals. These include chemical preservatives like parabens and other antimicrobial ingredients, artificial colors and fragrances and petroleum by-products, all of which have been implicated as carcinogens. So, while you are protecting your skin from cellular damage caused by over exposure to sunlight, you are simultaneously causing damage by exposing the skin and body to these toxins.
The most effective and preferred method for screening out the sun's burning rays is the use of a physical barrier, such as clothing or some other UV-blocking material. This can be a long sleeved shirt, a large brimmed hat which covers the face and head, long pants or other similar physical protection. Since this is not always practical due to the heat generated by the sun, there are also some natural oils and nontoxic materials that can be applied to the skin which add a level of UV protection.
One natural and easily attained oil that has been identified as having natural UV screening qualities is sesame oil. Mostly known for its use in cooking, this oil actually helps to screen the sun's burning rays from harming the skin to a certain degree. It is estimated that sesame oil may screen as much as 30% of damaging UV rays when used on its own. In addition to this, it is an excellent natural skin conditioner and contains many natural antioxidants which help neutralize free radical damage caused by UV rays.
Coconut oil is another natural sunscreen. This oil is estimated to screen as much as 20% UVA and UVB light from reaching the skin. Now known as having many other health benefits, coconut oil is also used as an external skin conditioner. It contains several active components which nourish the skin. Since it is all natural, you know you are helping protect your skin from the sun with something completely nontoxic.
Other natural oils which help shield the skin from UV damage are hempseed oil, peanut oil and olive oil. These all contain roughly the same screening power as coconut oil. Jojoba oil is somewhat protective, but to a lesser degree coming in at roughly 4%. While these natural oils of course cannot screen everything out, they can add to your sense of comfort in knowing you are screening out some of the sun's harmful rays without burdening your body with additional chemicals.
There are two other natural sunscreens that are particles of minerals which can also be of great use in protecting your skin in a nontoxic fashion against sunburn. These are titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. The particles of these minerals are large enough that they do not absorb into the skin. Rather, they sit on top of the skin to form a physical barrier against the sun.
Since the particles used in sunscreen are too large to absorb into the skin, there is no risk of toxic absorption and the risk levels of these minerals is low to begin with. These particles are used in a variety of natural sunscreens today as a healthier alternative to other chemicals.
Danna Norek owns AuraSensory.com, which offers all natural, non-toxic skin and body care products including an all natural aluminum free deodorant, non toxid petroleum and SLS free soaps, and natural lotions and lip balms which contain no chemicals and are free of parabens and other toxins. You may find these products at Aura Sensory Natural Deodorant and beauty tips, product reviews and naturally enhancing your skin health, reducing cellulite and being more beautiful by using natural methods at CosmeticsGalore Natural Beauty Enhancement.