4 Natural Sun Protecting Substances Your Skin Will Thank You For
The sun’s UV rays can have a harmful effect on skin, even during winter months and on cloudy days. Not only is prolonged sun exposure the most significant cause of skin cancer, it also breaks down natural collagen within the skin resulting in premature lines and wrinkles. In fact, studies have shown that up to 80% of aging can be caused by the sun. Adding sunscreen to your daily skin care routine is a great way to get year round protection from the sun’s rays.
Some of the most effective sunscreens are those made from natural plant-based substances. The active ingredients are extracted and processed to form nourishing essential oils and body butters. They often have a range of additional health and beauty benefits that manufactured chemical-based sunscreens do not.
Red raspberry oil: Potential SPF - 28 +
Red raspberry oil is a very rich source of alpha-tocopherol and gamma-tocopherol which provide broad spectrum protection against both UV-A and UV-B rays. The oil’s unique skin protecting properties mean that it is regularly used in cosmetic lip balms, creams, and salves to give them an SPF boost. The golden yellow oil can also be applied as a healing after sun lotion, because its high levels of vitamin E and vitamin A allow it to act as an anti-inflammatory and skin repairer.
Jojoba oil: Potential SPF – 4
Jojoba oil not only protects your skin from sun damage, it can also prevent blemishes and other bacterial skin conditions. It is ideal if you have an oily or spot prone complexion because it contains myristic acid which kills bacteria and fights acne. It has a very similar consistency to the oil produced naturally by your skin, so it can be easily absorbed.
Hempseed oil: Potential SPF – 6
Hempseed oil is high in linoleic acid which has anti-aging and moisture balancing abilities. As well as having a high SPF, the oil can also rehydrate dried out skin. It is commonly added to manufactured sunscreen, because it restores moisture to skin without leaving an unpleasant residue. Hempseed oil is considered to be a carrier oil, which means that it can be applied directly to skin without risk of irritation.
Shea butter: Potential SPF – 4
Shea butter is high in UV blocking cinnamic acid, and it can penetrate deep into skin without blocking your pores. It is often used as an effective hair and scalp treatment, because it leaves hair intensively conditioned and helps to prevent a burnt scalp. Pure unrefined Shea butter has been used as a traditional remedy for hundreds of years because of its protecting, healing, and anti-aging abilities.
Using naturally occurring oils and body butters is a great way to keep your skin protected, nourished, and looking amazing. However, it is important to note that the SPF of these raw natural ingredients can be diminished by some manufacturing processes, and their true SPF value is only definite when they have been tested by a certified lab. Information on the sun protection factor of each product is usually included on the label, so read packaging carefully before use.