what is zinc oxide in sunscreen

What is Zinc Oxide in Sunscreen

what is zinc oxide in sunscreen

Let’s face it, there’s so much sun out there, and you have to protect your skin from it! Most of us know that excessive sun exposure causes skin cancer. And I’m sure you’ve heard when skin cancer is found early it’s curable. While that may be true, most skin cancers aren’t found early enough to prevent death. Wearing sunscreen can decrease your chances of developing skin cancer.

While prevention of skin cancer is up on the priority list, sunscreen also keeps your skin from aging quickly and evens out your skin tone. And who doesn’t want to keep a young-looking face? Sunscreen is a must-have for everyone and there are a lot of options for us! One of the more natural options is zinc oxide sunscreen. So what is zinc oxide sunscreen? It’s a mineral-based formula, and it’s important because it’s natural and protects you from the sun!


What Is Zinc Oxide in SunscreenEverything You Need to Know

UVB rays, UVA rays, SPF, zinc oxide, and titanium oxide are some of the words you see on the what-seems-like-a-million bottles on the shelf. You always see the traditional SPF followed by a number. You might have a lot of questions like I did. What is zinc oxide sunscreen and what is zinc oxide in sunscreen?

  • Zinc oxide is a sunscreen formula made with a mineral rather than a chemical. The big deal about this one is it doesn’t seep into your body and it’s more natural than a traditional chemical sunscreen. And hey, isn’t it important to know what goes in our bodies today?
  • Zinc oxide is kind of like a barrier. You apply it, and it makes the sun’s harmful rays bounce right back off of your skin like it was a mirror! And to me, this is an awesome concept because it’s safer than a traditional sunscreen and protects your skin from both UVB and UVA rays. In English, UVB rays burn the outermost parts of your skin and UVA rays go a little bit deeper.
  • Zinc oxide sunscreens are for everyone. It might seem like zinc oxide sunscreens are for people with the lightest skin since it creates a barrier, but that’s not true! Since they create a barrier, they don’t penetrate through the skin like chemical sunscreens. If your skin is sensitive like mine, zinc oxide sunscreens might be a better choice for you too.
  • Some precautions you should know when it comes to zinc oxide sunscreens. First, it’s a little thicker than your average sunscreen. This tends to leave a residue. Since its thicker, its harder to spread evenly. When this happens you can end up with burns outside of the areas you applied the sunscreen to, so you have to be a little more careful when applying zinc oxide sunscreens.

Zinc Oxide Sunscreens

Now we’re going into specifics. I put a list together here with different zinc oxide sunscreen products and how it works it’s best. I have personally used most of these items, so I’m giving you my honest review!


Zinc Oxide Sunscreen Spray

what is zinc oxide in sunscreen

Ok, I have to say zinc oxide sunscreen sprays rock! I tried Babo Botanicals Sheer Zinc Continuous Spray Sunscreen on my first beach trip this summer. I went with an SPF 30.

First off, you can see where you spray, and that made it so much easier to rub in evenly. I spent 4 hours at the beach and reapplied 3 times, following the directions. No burn, just tan!

I think overall, anyone could use this. I thought this was a little pricey, but the sprays went on so evenly that it proved its worth.


Zinc Oxide Sun Cream

what is zinc oxide in sunscreen

Sun creams, or sunscreen lotions, are one of the most common sunscreen products. Personally, they have always been harder for me to distribute and I get streaks. My complexion is pale and I have sensitive skin, so Neutrogena is always a good choice for hypoallergenic products.

I gave Neutrogena’s Sheer Zinc Sunscreen Lotion a shot. I was satisfied with the results. I went with a higher SPF (50) and I didn’t burn or tan at all!

There were two bad things about this one though. It was tedious to put on and cover everything because it was so thick. I had to have help applying it to my back. The other issue is it leaves a white residue like deodorant stains on your clothes and bathing suit.


Best Zinc Oxide Face Sunscreen

what is zinc oxide in sunscreen

Ocean Potion’s Face Zinc is my personal go-to! This face sunscreen became my staple. I am very fair-skinned, and this face sunscreen does the trick. I also have sensitive skin and I have never broken out from this one.

You can wear this plain, or under makeup. It definitely provides extra protection. It’s great for people who burn easily on the face or have sensitive skin like me.

I learned that you have to rub this formula in your hands quickly and apply it to your face just as quick though. If it sets, it will get cakey.


Zinc Oxide Lip Protection

what is zinc oxide in sunscreen

Chapped, blistery lips that won’t go away are the worst! That’s why I recommend Waxhead’s all-natural lip balm (zinc oxide).

Sunscreen lip balms tend to go on thick and feel pasty or waxy. Waxhead’s all-natural lip balm goes on a little thick, but you can smear it in and it tends to stay lightweight. Also, it’s peppermint flavored so it gives off a cooling effect which is awesome when you’re in the sun. Perfect for anyone going to the beach or saying poolside!


Zinc Oxide Powder Sunscreen

Zinc oxide powder sunscreens are a little bit newer on the market. There are two main types of powder.

The first type of zinc oxide powder is a stick with a brush that can be applied like a mineral foundation, and some are even tinted. The powder stick usually comes tinted, so it’s more of a cosmetic product, and I hear it works great!

The other option is zinc oxide powder that you can mix with an oil like coconut, or shea butter and vitamin E cream to make a lotion. The regular powder is awesome for anyone doing a DIY project. It mixes well, offering great sun protection and great for everyone.


Zinc Oxide Side Effects

Zinc oxide sunscreens are great, and while they offer a safer alternative to chemical sunscreens, there are still some things to take into consideration. Zinc oxide side effects are typically minimal.

The most common side effect of using any zinc oxide sunscreen is some mild skin irritation. Sometimes a very rare reaction can occur from zinc oxide. A rare reaction tends to be serious in nature, where you could experience chest pain, dizziness, swelling, hives, and trouble breathing. These reactions are minimal in nature as zinc oxide sunscreens are generally safe.


Above All, Sunscreen is Important

We know that the sun has damaging rays that can hurt your skin. These rays can make you appear years older, can cause lesions like sunspots and dark marks on the face, and at the worse – deadly skin cancers. Since zinc oxide creates a barrier on your skin, rather than your skin absorbing chemicals, its safe for everyone, even if you have sensitive skin.

There are so many zinc oxide products out there to protect you from these deadly rays from the sun.

  • zinc oxide sunscreen spray
  • zinc oxide sun cream
  • zinc oxide face sunscreen
  • zinc oxide lip protection
  • zinc oxide powder sunscreen

With these products, you can have a safer and more awesome experience at the beach and poolside this summer. It’s important to remember that zinc oxide sunscreens go on a little thicker than the traditional chemical-based sunscreens. You have to rub these sunscreens in a little better to gain full coverage and prevent streaking.

Even though zinc oxide sunscreens are thicker, you can put your mind at ease knowing that zinc oxide sunscreens aren’t absorbed through the skin.

Zinc oxide sunscreens protect against both the sun’s burning rays. UVA rays penetrate deeply while UVB rays penetrate the top layer of your skin. As our ozone layer continues to deplete, protecting your skin from the sun’s harmful rays is now more important than ever.