Mineral Based Sunscreens VS. Chemical Sunscreens
Summer is around the corner, although I am all for that natural VITA-D, you need to make sure to be protected! Many Clients have asked me the best sunscreen to use on their face, whether it be to prevent irritation and breakouts, cancer-causing sun rays, and cancer-causing chemical ingredients. Here is a brief answer to what the difference is between active ingredients in sunscreens and/or sunblock.
Zinc Oxide and/or Titanium Dioxide:
Zinc Oxide is the most common active ingredient in most professional and ‘natural’ based skin care lines. Zinc Oxide and Titanium Dioxide are minerals that do not dissolve into sunscreens and absorb into your skin. Both minerals work by sitting on the top layer of your skin, where they then scatter, absorb, and reflect ultraviolet radiation, protecting the living skin in your dermis layers below. Zinc Oxide, is a full spectrum blocker, protecting from UVA, UVB, and UVC. Titanium Dioxide is also used alongside Zinc Oxide to help protect from UVB rays, but is not as affective in protecting against UVA rays. Titanium Dioxide is mainly used in mineral makeup that contain an SPF. Just know that when using makeup with an SPF double check that it contains Zinc Oxide as well or you won’t be protected from all the sun rays!
Oxybenzone, Oxtinoxate, Octisalate etc.
These are all known as an active ingredient in synthetic chemical sunscreens.
These chemicals are significantly different than a mineral base compound. They ONLY work by absorbing into the skin. These chemicals produce free-radicals, and because they work when absorbed, they are releasing these free-radicals into the bloodstream. Oxybenzone is a popular spectrum blocker, but also one of the most troublesome to your health. This chemical has been believed to cause hormone unbalance, and cell damage that may provoke cancer. It gets into the blood-steam, and acts like estrogen in the body. Many people will develop an allergic reaction, and many health risks linking to this chemical.