How To Make Sunscreen at Home

How To Make Sunscreen at Home
This homemade, chemical-free sunscreen uses non-nano zinc oxide as the active sunscreen agent. The benefits of zinc oxide are that it reflects UV rays off the surface of the skin to prevent sun damage, it does not absorb into the skin like many chemical sunscreens do and it is safe for the environment. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) rates non-nano zinc oxide and non-nano titanium dioxide as the safest and most effective UVA and UVB skin protectants. In fact, the sunscreen rated number one by EWG contains non-nano zinc oxide as the active ingredient.

Instructions

Difficulty: Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • 10 oz. of natural lotion Clean disposable plastic cup Small saucepan Cutting board Cosmetic grade non-nano zinc oxide Clean disposable plastic spoon Liquid cosmetic foundation Clean jar or bottle with lid
  • 10 oz. of natural lotion
  • Clean disposable plastic cup
  • Small saucepan
  • Cutting board
  • Cosmetic grade non-nano zinc oxide
  • Clean disposable plastic spoon
  • Liquid cosmetic foundation
  • Clean jar or bottle with lid
Step 1
Pour 10 oz. of a natural lotion of your choice into a clean plastic disposable cup. For extra sun protection, choose a natural lotion that contains shea butter.
Step 2
Fill a small saucepan half full with hot tap water. Use the hottest water available from your tap. The exact temperature of the water is not important.
Step 3
Place the cup of lotion into the saucepan of hot water. Place a cutting board on top of the cup, to prevent it from floating. Leave the cup of lotion in the hot water for 15 minutes, to warm the lotion.
Step 4
Remove the cup of lotion from the saucepan.
Step 5
Pour 2 tbsp. of cosmetic grade non-nano zinc oxide into the cup of warm lotion. Thoroughly mix the zinc oxide and the warm lotion together, using a clean disposable plastic spoon. Cosmetic grade non-nano zinc oxide is available for purchase from compounding pharmacies, cosmetic supply stores and at some health food stores.
Step 6
Stir in three drops of liquid cosmetic foundation to the sunscreen mixture. Non-nano zinc oxide leaves a slightly white residue on the skin. The liquid cosmetic foundation helps counteract the white residue for a more natural look. You can add more foundation to the sunscreen later if you choose.
Step 7
Transfer the sunscreen lotion from the plastic cup to a clean jar or bottle.
Step 8
Discard the plastic cup and plastic spoon. Wash the saucepan and cutting board in soapy water to remove any zinc oxide that may have spilled on them.

Tips & Warnings

 
Wilderness Survival for Dummies recommends using mud or charcoal to protect your skin from UV rays if you do not have any sunscreen. To make a charcoal sunscreen, pound burnt blackened firewood with a rock to make a powder charcoal. Mix the powder charcoal with water and apply it to your skin.
 
Do not ingest zinc oxide or allow children or pets to eat zinc oxide or zinc oxide products. Because zinc oxide has low toxicity, an overdose is unlikely, but not impossible. If you accidentally get a little bit of zinc oxide into your mouth, chances are that you will be fine. Some of the symptoms of an overdose include nausea, vomiting, chills, jaundice and fever. EWG considers non-nano zinc oxide to be safer than micronized zinc oxide, because the smaller size particles of micronized zinc oxide can easily be inhaled into the lungs. The inhalation of micronized zinc oxide may pose health problems; more scientific studies are needed to determine the safety of zinc oxide inhalation. Even though non-nano zinc oxide is not thought to pose the risk of inhalation, as a precaution it is better to avoid inhaling it. Keep the zinc oxide out of the reach of children and pets.
 
Do not ingest zinc oxide or allow children or pets to eat zinc oxide or zinc oxide products. Because zinc oxide has low toxicity, an overdose is unlikely, but not impossible. If you accidentally get a little bit of zinc oxide into your mouth, chances are that you will be fine. Some of the symptoms of an overdose include nausea, vomiting, chills, jaundice and fever.
 
EWG considers non-nano zinc oxide to be safer than micronized zinc oxide, because the smaller size particles of micronized zinc oxide can easily be inhaled into the lungs. The inhalation of micronized zinc oxide may pose health problems; more scientific studies are needed to determine the safety of zinc oxide inhalation. Even though non-nano zinc oxide is not thought to pose the risk of inhalation, as a precaution it is better to avoid inhaling it. Keep the zinc oxide out of the reach of children and pets.

Article Written By Rose Kivi

Rose Kivi has been a writer for more than 10 years. She has a background in the nursing field, wildlife rehabilitation and habitat conservation. Kivi has authored educational textbooks, patient health care pamphlets, animal husbandry guides, outdoor survival manuals and was a contributing writer for two books in the Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader Series.

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