For many years we at SunGrubbies.com have been concerned about putting chemicals (with long laboratory names) directly on our skin. We know that even the best sunscreens do not protect as well as special UV-blocking clothing but there are some areas where sun protective fabric is just not practical.
In researching the area of natural sunscreen for you and ourselves we found that many popular sunscreens include ingredients that are known to disrupt biological functions. Chemical sunscreens have also been shown to harm coral reefs, marine life and mammals. Thousands of tons of sunscreen wash off swimmers around the world polluting water sources.
The Environmental Working Group's (EWG) 2009 Sunscreen Safety Guide lists oxybenzone and benzophenone-3 as hazardous; they are absorbed through the skin and pose risks to the endocrine system. In an in-depth analysis of safety and effectiveness, the EWG found that over 500 commercial sunscreens failed to adequately protect the skin and/or contain hazardous chemicals. Many of our sunscreens featured below rated very favorably in the EWG's study.
National Geographic's Green Guide (November 2009) featured a report by the Potomac Conservancy, confirming that common sunscreen ingredients known to disrupt human reproductive and immune function are prevalent in the Potomac River system. The Potomac River system, Washington D.C.'s primary drinking water source, is far from the only problematic water source in the United States. The U.S. Geological Survey reported in September 2009 that river basins throughout the U.S. are affected as evidenced by chemical compounds detected in the water.
In light of these reports, consumers play an important role in protecting the drinking water supply by using sunscreens as well as perfumes and cosmetics with natural ingredients rather than harmful chemicals. Oxybenzone, for example, one of the primary ingredients in many commercial sunscreens, is a proven hormone disruptor.
It is our pleasure to bring you the best chemical free sunscreens and sun blocks we could find. This highly effective selection of biodegradable, non-chemical and organic sunscreens and lip balm will help us all protect the planet and our health.