Summer is here! Well, not officially, but it’s hot outside so you get what I’m saying. That means it’s that time of the year when I whip up a batch or two of homemade mineral sunscreen so I thought I’d share my favorite recipe with you today.
I love this homemade mineral sunscreen for a variety of different reasons.
- I control what goes into it.
- It’s cheap.
- It blocks excess UV rays.
- It’s easy to make and smells great!
Sounds great, right? Awesome! Let’s make some, together! I know you’re kiddos need some natural homemade goodies too!
(Oh, and if you have limited time and DIYs aren’t a great fit, I have another all-natural option for homemade mineral sunscreen for you at the bottom of this post. Scroll there now!)
Natural Sun Safety
I’ve written several different posts on how to stay safe in the sun so let me quickly recap those here and tell you why this homemade mineral sunscreen is a perfect fit when it comes to natural sun safety.
First, exposure to UV rays via the sun help our bodies make more vitamin d, and we need vitamin d to be strong and healthy. Many people are lacking enough vitamin d these days because they’re not eating enough healthy foods and they’re slathering themselves in chemical sunscreens every time they step outside. You do need some UV rays, you know. Another reason people lack enough vitamin d is because they don’t get out in it enough. I’m totally guilty of this, especially the older I get as I’m busy, and I have a lot of indoor things that take up a lot of my time. I suppose it’s like anything else, though. You have to make time for healthy things in life.
Unfortunately, these days people are afraid of the sun, and rightly so as skin cancers are on the rise. But, I don’t think that the sun is to blame for all the skin cancers we’re seeing. A lot of cancers (and other chronic diseases) are on the rise, but I think it’s mostly due to diets and exposure to toxins. No matter, it’s now recommended that you slather your body in chemical sunscreens that block the majority of UV rays in order to protect your skin from damage.
Now, I’m not arguing that UV rays can’t damage your skin cells. They can. I am arguing that the toxins in those UV ray blocking sunscreens are just as bad for us so they’re not the best option to keep ourselves safe.
With that being said, there are things we can do as natural-minded mamas to help our kids be safe in the sun. Limiting the time in the sun will go a long way as will covering our skin to block some of those rays. We can cover our skin with clothes or with minerals. Seeing how it’s summer and hot outside, the clothes part can be difficult… at least for my boys who run around half naked. Just saying. That’s why mineral sunscreens are so useful for me if my kids are going to be outside playing for a long time. I can simply rub them down with some homemade mineral sunscreen every couple of hours and feel good knowing they’re not going to get so much sun that it’s bad for them.
Okay, so let’s move on to how to actually make this great homemade mineral sunscreen.
Homemade Mineral Sunscreen
This sunscreen recipe comes from my friend Jessica over at Pronounce skincare (you can buy it premade from her). I’ve changed it a bit from her original recipe. This is the way I like it, and I think you will too! Yes, it uses grams rather than ounces so you get nice, clean, even numbers. Americans, don’t hate me. Just use a kitchen scale, and it will make your life easy as most of them have an option for measuring in grams. You’ll thank me once you get used to making homemade products this way.
Makes 8-ounces of homemade mineral sunscreen.
- 90 grams coconut oil
- 65 grams sweet almond oil
- 27.5 grams shea butter
- 28.5 grams beeswax
- 30 grams non-nano zinc oxide
- 10 grams cacao powder
- 1/2 teaspoon vitamin e
- 50-100 drops essential oils (here’s a list of great ones for summer… just make sure they’re not phototoxic)
Premeasure all your ingredients, and set aside.
Add measured oils, butter, and wax into a double boiler and warm over low heat until everything has liquefied.
Remove from heat and add measure powders into the liquid oils. Wisk well until no clumps remain.
Add in vitamin e and essential oils. Wisk well again, smell to see if the scent is to your liking. Add more if needed.
At this point, let the sunscreen cool in your pan so it can thicken up. Some of the zinc powder will sink to the bottom of the sunscreen, but don’t worry about that… you’ll be mixing it all again.
Once your sunscreen has cooled and thickened, move it from the saucepan to a bowl and mix it well to incorporate the zinc powder that settled on the bottom back into the cream. This will ensure that you have enough zinc in the end product to do its job.
Finally, pour into storage containers. Label and store.
Apply a thin layer of this homemade mineral sunscreen to areas prone to burning every two hours (hourly during the hottest part of the day or when swimming or sweating excessively). Store in a cool area, and use within 1-2 years.
This sunscreen will leave stains on light colored clothing. The stains will come out in the wash, though. If you don’t want to deal with any staining at all, simply use less cacao powder or leave it out entirely. Just add 10 more grams of zinc to the recipe. Know that your cream will turn out white, and it will leave your skin looking whiter than if you use the cacao powder.
I prefer to use the cacao powder in our sunscreen, and we’ve not had big issues with stains. However, I have 4 messy boys, and I don’t put them in light colored clothes anyway as they would inevitably become stained from who knows what!
Want even more herbal butter recipes? Check out my e-book, Herbal Butters & Creams: The Ultimate How-To Guide! Not only will it tell you the difference between butters and creams (lotions too), but when to use them and why. It will also walk you through the steps of making them yourself! Not only that, but you’ll learn how to source quality ingredients, about “natural” preservatives and natural emulsion techniques, and how to add “advanced” ingredients into them. Oh… and you’ll get 5 exclusive recipes to help you get started making your own herbal butters and creams right away! Learn more about it here!
So there you have it! An all natural, non-toxic homemade mineral sunscreen that you can feel good about using on your kiddos.
Playing in the sun,
Don’t Have Time To Make This??
No problem! Here’s another recipe that’s very similar only the herbal salve is already made for you. All you have to do is mix the salve, zinc, and cacao (if you want it) together and voila! You have a homemade mineral sunscreen. Enjoy!