If you are looking for a natural alternative to commercial sun creams and sunscreens then you might be unsure of what kind of ingredients to look out for. Here are just some of the oils and butters that we think are great at providing natural skin protection, especially when combined.
Shea butter is a wonderful moisturiser, but it also has a naturally occurring SPF of 6. Whilst this provides some level of protection, it doesn’t prevent skin cancer or early ageing of the skin so you need to use it in conjunction with something else. In other words, don’t use it on its own but rather look of products that use it as a base. As well as its SPF value, it also moisturises the skin, soothes any irritation, and is great for sensitive or problematic skin complaints.
Zinc oxide is often found in commercial and natural sunscreens and it is approved both in the UK and the US for use as a protector from the sun’s harmful rays. It is unique in the way in which it blocks all parts of the UV spectrum including UVA and UVB radiation. It is also very gentle on the skin and highly unlikely to cause any kind of irritation.
Whilst not effective on its own as a sunscreen, carrot oil when used in conjunction with other ingredients such as zinc oxide can provide additional protection from the sun. Rich in beta carotene, vitamins E and A, and pro-vitamin A, it is also great for healing dry, cracked, and chapped skin whilst retaining moisture.
Raspberry Seed Oil
Raspberry seed oil provides a level of protection from UVA and UVB rays but it is not enough to use on its own. When combined with other natural SPFs, it works well and also helps fight ageing, is an antioxidant, stimulates collagen production and makes your skin look and feel more vibrant. It is also particularly effective when used on acne-prone skin and skin that can be prone to dryness.
Sunflower Seed Oil
Full of antioxidants including Vitamin E, sunflower seed oil can help to reduce free radicals that can result in damage to the skin. It is also a great moisturiser and contains high levels of beta carotene which can reduce the level of your skin’s sensitivity to the sun.
Wheatgerm oil can provide sun protection of SPF 20 but again, it is best used in conjunction with other natural ingredients. Rich in Vitamin E and antioxidants it also helps to repair cell damage and keep your skin moisturised and hydrated, even in harsh conditions.