Safer Sunscreen

Oct 09, 2023


  • More people are diagnosed with skin cancer each year in the U.S. than all other cancers combined.

  • An estimated 90 percent of skin aging is caused by the sun.

  • People who use sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher daily show 24 percent less skin aging than those who do not use sunscreen daily.
  • Regular daily use of an SPF 15 or higher sunscreen reduces the risk of developing squamous cell carcinoma by about 40 percent.
  • Sun damage is cumulative. Only about 23 percent of lifetime exposure occurs by age 18.
  • More people develop skin cancer because of indoor tanning than develop lung cancer because of smoking.


And why is it that some of us are so hard-headed when it comes to wearing sunscreen?! 

With these disturbing statistics, we need to get better about consistently wearing it. If you are reading this and you are already good about wearing it frequently, please know you are not the majority. Remember to encourage your friends to use sunscreen when prolonged sun exposure occurs.

Read more facts about skin cancer HERE.

Did you know that some ingredients in your average sunscreen contain chemicals that could harm you and the environment?

Oxybenzone and Octinoxate.

These two chemicals have been banned in Hawaii and Key West.  Don't wait for your state to ban these toxic ingredients! With the potential to damage coral reefs as well as be harmful to humans, we all need a safer option.

After much research on the differences between Chemical and Physical sunscreen and their ingredients, I have decided to only use Zinc based (physical) formulas.  I want to choose a sunscreen that has rigorous testing to back their safety claims.

There are several good zinc based sunscreens on the market but so far I have found Beautycounter's Countersun line works the best for our family. Did you know it was important to use non-nano zinc oxide? Beautycounter does evaluate the particle size of the non-nano zinc oxide they use to ensure that there is low potential risk of it entering the blood stream. Plus they ban other toxic chemicals in the formulation. It also has a soft, natural scent. 

I'm sure it is doesn't come as a shock to you that my favorite sunscreens come from Beautycounter.

Beautycounter does a great job keeping the icky chemicals that can hurt us and the planet out of their products.

The Never List is our list of over 1800 questionable or harmful ingredients that we do not allow in the formulation of any of our products. And yes, Oxybenzone and Octinoxate are part of The Never List. We ban more than the UK now! 

What I find even more impressive is the high level of performance our products have, even void of some of the ingredients that supposedly MAKE products work best. 


Finally, a Safer Sunscreen that Works...

At Beautycounter, we prohibit CHEMICAL SPF filters due to their potential for skin irritation. We prefer to use physical sunscreens, more commonly known as mineral sunscreens. Our formula’s non-nano zinc oxide sits on the surface of the skin and physically bounces or reflects the sun’s rays away from the skin. While our sunscreens are ideal for sensitive skin, remember that sunscreens should be used only on children six months of age or older. For babies under six months, check with your doctor for advice.


What's The Difference in Physical and Chemical Sunscreen?

I'm so glad you asked!

Physical sunscreen uses Zinc Oxide which acts as a physical barrier to prevent ALL of the sun’s rays from getting to us. Zinc oxide literally sits on the skin and does not penetrate, and it doesn't convert to anything harmful once it comes in contact with the sun’s rays.

On the other hand, chemical sunscreens (which are typically the major brands you see in stores and ones we are familiar with) use chemicals to block some of the sun’s rays but not all of them. Instead of sitting on top of the skin, they are absorbed quickly into the bloodstream which is an issue - especially when harsh chemicals are involved.

Did you know that the ingredients of chemical sunscreens can also convert to more dangerous substances when the sun comes in contact with them? Not to mention that some of their ingredients are known endocrine disruptors.

A very common ingredient in chemical sunscreens that you probably have heard of is OXYBENZONE. Oxybenzone is a dangerous and toxic ingredient found in most conventional sunscreens and is easily absorbed into the skin. Oxybenzone has been linked to possible hormone imbalances, testosterone disruption, allergies, endometriosis, and even cancer. It also has been shown to harm coral reefs.

How is this not common knowledge? YUCK!


Recent Recall On Sunscreen

I was sad, but not shocked, to see the recent recall of several popular chemical sunscreens made by Johnson & Johnson. This happened last July (2021). Please make sure you check this out so you can AVOID these brands for sure! 

Read Article for Recalled Sunscreen


My Favorite Sunscreen Choices Are From Beautycounter. They are SAFER and they WORK! Take a Look...

  • Countersun Mineral Sunscreen Mist SPF 30 is our innovative non-aerosol that sprays on white to help guide application, blends in easily, and dries quickly with no oily residue. Read more about our NON-Aerosol Pump that is better for the environment HERE. It does come in 3 and 6 oz bottles. 
  • Countersun Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 30 is our most traditional mineral sunscreen. Its lightweight, water-resistant formula blends evenly with limited white residue, plus it feels gentle and pleasant on your skin. It does come in 3.4 and 6.7 oz tubes. 
  • Countersun Mineral Sunscreen Stick SPF 30 is our most compact formula—it’s infused with ultra-moisturizing cocoa butter and glides on smoothly without leaving a white cast. Perfect to throw in your beach bag, purse, or golf bag! 
  • Countersun Tinted Mineral Sunscreen Mist SPF 30 comes in two shades: Light/Medium and Medium/Deep. It is an effective shield from UVA and UVB rays—and its tint helps to camouflage imperfections and even skin tone. This also uses our NON-aerosol pump that is better for the environment. It only comes in 6 oz bottles. 
  • Countersun Daily Sheer Defense for Face SPF 25 guards against the sun’s damaging rays. This lightweight lotion provides protection from UVA, UVB, and HEV blue light rays while leaving no chalky white cast. Antioxidants help protect skin from pollution, while chicory root extract supports skin’s moisture barrier to lock in hydration.


My suggestions...

Do I even need to tell you? Ditch the CHEMICAL sunscreens and go with a PHYSICAL sunscreen when you have prolonged sun exposure. Allowing yourself a healthy dose of sun exposure is NOT a bad idea. Lots of problems can be caused if we don't get any sun exposure at all as this is the bodies way of converting Vitamin D. However, the key is for any "sunning" or prolonged exposure to the sun is to BE SMART-wear a good physical sunscreen and reapply at least every 2 hours. * If you are at high risk and you avoid the sun at all costs, please consider taking an oral dose of Vitamin D3.

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