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Chemical or Mineral Sunscreen? What to know about each one.

Chemical or Mineral Sunscreen? What to know about each one.



Everyone knows that protecting our skin from the sun is essential for preventing the risk of cancer and UV radiation. That’s why sunscreen has become the #1 must-have product when it comes to our beauty and skincare routines. However, do you know the difference between mineral and chemical sunscreen? Their benefits? Or which suits your expectations best? Maybe you do or maybe you don’t. For those who haven’t done the research keep reading to get a closer look at each one. 


Let's start with the most common: chemical sunscreen. It may have a scary name but in reality it’s not. It's referred to as “chemical” because it's active ingredients are non-natural compounds like oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate, octocrylene, homosalate, and octinoxate, which are all FDA approved. These ingredients make chemical sunscreens effective by absorbing the sun's UV rays and then disspitating them by chemical reaction, causing them to never actually hit your body in the first place.

This type of sunblock is ideal for people looking to avoid white residue, as it absorbs thoroughly into the skin. Many of these products are light textured, making them a great option for those with oily skin.  


Now let’s talk about mineral sunscreen. As its name states, the only active ingredients in this sunscreen are zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, two natural minerals. As opposed to chemical sunscreen, this option doesn’t absorb the UV rays, what it actually does is create a physical barrier on the surface of your skin to reflect the rays away from your body, having a similar effect as shields. 

Mineral sunscreens don’t contain parabens, colorants, nor fragrances, making them the best option for sensitive skins and babies. 

On a personal note, both myself and my daughters use mineral sunscreen. Why? well before my girls were born I would always apply light textured chemical sunscreen, however, the doctor warned me with my first born that I shouldn’t continue applying this type of sunblock until my daughter was 6 months old. Obviously (as a skin care addict) I started researching to find out why and I honestly loved what I found about mineral sunscreen.  

It is a spectacular natural protector and sits very softly on the skin, with minimal risk of irritation. However, what I love most about it is taht we aren’t polluting the planet. When we go in the ocean, it doesn’t contaminate the water with chemicals. I consider this to be fantastic because the more we do for the world we live in, the more the world will give back to us.