We’ve already experienced a 100 degree day here in Michigan. It’s been an unseasonably warm, sunny May, and we’ve been outside from sun up till sun down planting our lavender field for our U-Pick season.
My 19-month-old daughter has inherited mine and my father’s pale Irish skin, which when exposed to the sun, rather than tanning, it turns red and then later peels…nice! Needless to say, we go through sunscreen in this house like water.
Not only is store-bought sunscreen expensive, it’s also filled with chemicals. Your skin is your largest organ and something doesn’t sit right with me in lathering my family head-to-toe in ingredients I can’t pronounce.
Over the years I’ve done research on homemade sunscreens and they all have one thing in common; Non-Nano Zinc Oxide.
What is Non-Nano Zinc Oxide?
“Zinc oxide is found in the Earth’s crust as natural mineral zincite.” TrueNatural.com Unlike chemical sunscreens, Zinc oxide creates a physical barrier on the skin. The zinc reflects the sun away from the skin and blocks the rays.
Non-Nano is a fancy word meaning that the zinc particles are not fine enough to enter the bloodstream. So it safely sits on top of your skin and is not absorbed.
I found my package of Non-Nano Zinc oxide on Amazon.
Beeswax in Self-care Products
When making your own health and beauty products, beeswax can be a very useful ingredient. When thinking of beeswax, think waterproof and lending a solid texture at room/body temperature. Many times when making these kinds of products you’re adding lots of liquid oils like olive, sweet almond or grape seed. Coconut oil also has a melting temperature right around body temp. So to give products like lip balm, deodorant or in this case, sunscreen a more solid texture, beeswax is perfect!
To learn how to render your own usable beeswax from your hives visit my post Mind Your Beeswax
It also gives the sunscreen waterproofing power. So if you’re planning a day at the beach this sunscreen should stay on in the water as well as most sunscreens. (check often to see if re-application is needed) As far as I can tell, the zinc oxide provides an SPF of around 30.
After reading through lots of recipes online, I finally settled on one from the YouTube Channel Farmhouse on Boone.
non-nano zinc oxide
cocoa butter, optional
A ¼ cup of each will fill an 8oz mason jar.
Directions: Melt all oils over a double boiler. Add Zinc Oxide. Let cool till it starts to solidify then whip it with a whisk to give it a creamy-white texture. You can add soothing essential oils like lavender too.
We used this sunscreen exclusively over the Memorial Day weekend. My daughter was outside playing in her new kiddie pool and sandbox most of the weekend and has absolutely no evidence of sun exposure whatsoever. I applied it to her in the morning and again in the afternoon when the sun was really direct.
How does it feel?
I’d compare it to a commercial sunscreen in feel. It starts out a bit greasy but absorbs quickly as you rub it in. It does not break out my face at all.
The zinc oxide also gives your skin a very subtle translucent film. If you’re careful to rub it in well, it’s not noticeable at all.
I shared this recipe on our Iron Oak Farm Facebook page and a few readers made it. They agreed that the texture was very nice and the white color disappeared after rubbing thoroughly.
To be honest…I’m completely sold on this product. I really don’t see buying commercial sunscreen again. If you try it, let me know what you think!
The same day I made this sunscreen, I also made a batch of homemade deodorant. For the recipe on that check out my post Beeswax in Your Armpits.