10 Mineral Sunscreens That Won’t Damage Your Skin… Or The Environment

Yes, your sunscreen matters.


Chandré Davids |

You’ve heard it before and you’ll hear it again: sunscreens are an essential part of your skincare routine. South Africa has one of the highest monitored ultraviolet (UV) levels in the world which results in over 20 000 cases of skin cancer are diagnosed in the country each year, mostly attributed to ultra-violet exposure.

Furthermore, research shows that in SA, the incidence of malignant melanoma is among the highest in the world with at least 23.2 cases per 100 000 reported among white people and 0.5 per 100 000 among black people. With such frightening stats, leading SA health expert, Vanessa Ascencao, says that it’s of critical importance that everyone — regardless of skin tone — wears sunscreen.

Chemical vs Mineral sunscreens

Choosing the right screen can be tricky as many of them are filled with ingredients that can be harmful to your skin and the environment. Ingredients like oxybenzone and octinoxate — the main ingredients in chemical sunscreens — are being banned in places like Hawaii due to their contribution to coral destruction.

Besides contributing to the bleaching of coral reefs, chemical sunscreens can also cause skin irritation and acne. Ascencao suggests using mineral sunscreens which contain safe ingredients such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. These kinds of sunscreens have a lower chance of irritating your skin and damaging the environment.

READ MORE: Ummm, Does Sunscreen Really Expire?

Sun protection from within

Ascencao adds that a diet and supplements support skin health, helping to protect the skin against sun damage. She advocates for a natural, anti-inflammatory, organic, whole food diet including blueberries, nuts and seeds, carrots and leafy greens, green tea extract and cauliflower which help protect against wrinkling and sun damage while fighting free radicals that cause stress on the body.

Mineral sunscreens

There are plenty of sunscreens on the market but it can be pretty confusing reading ingredients that you can’t even pronounce — especially when the good ingredients are mixed with the not so good ones. That’s why it’s we gathered ten mineral sunscreens that will protect your skin and won’t damage the environment.

REN Clean Screen Mineral SPF 30

Formulated for daily use, the 22% non-nano naturally derived Zinc Oxide sits gently on the skin’s surface as a barrier against sun damage, and won’t clog pores, cause allergies or irritate sensitive skin.

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REN Clean Screen Mineral SPF 30

R 670

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READ MOREShould You Wear Sunscreen Every Day? An Expert Answers Your Burning Questions

Avene SPF 50+ MINERAL CREAM

Avene SPF50+ Mineral Cream 50ml is specially formulated with soothing thermal spring water to comfort intolerant skin, while UVB and UVA filters lend maximum protection from the sun’s rays.

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Avene SPF50+ Mineral Cream

R 249,95

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Clinique SPF 50 Mineral Sunscreen Fluid for Face

An ultra-lightweight, 100% mineral sunscreen that is incredibly comfortable, even for sensitive skins.

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Clinique SPF 50 Mineral Sunscreen Fluid for Face

R 395

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READ MOREHere’s What You Need To Know About Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide Sunscreens

Badger SPF 35 Clear Zinc Sunscreen Cream Badger Balm

Made without any harmful substances like aluminium compounds, titanium dioxide, or oxybenzone, this non-whitening sunscreen which offers you broad-spectrum protection for up to 80 minutes.

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Badger SPF 35 Clear Zinc Sunscreen Cream Badger Balm

R 289,75

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Hey Gorgeous Gorgeously Natural Sunscreen

The Hey Gorgeous sunscreen is 100% natural, made with the active ingredient zinc oxide; this mineral sits on top of your skin, where it blocks out harmful rays, protecting your skin from sunburn and ageing.

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Hey Gorgeous Gorgeously Natural Sunscreen

R 189

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Eli & You Natural Sunscreen SPF40+

A mineral-based sunblock made with zinc oxide, with a powerful SPF of 40+ for long-lasting effects. Eli & You Sunscreen shields your skin against UVA and UVB rays, and is also water resistant.

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Eli & You Natural Sunscreen SPF40+

R 230

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Sunumbra Daily SPF15 Sunscreen

Made with zinc oxide and a blend of natural botanical ingredients, the Sunumbra formula is safe for the whole family and suitable for those with sensitive skin.

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Sunumbra Daily SPF15 Sunscreen

R 275

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Oh-Lief Natural Body Sunscreen SPF30

This CANSA-approved SPF30 mineral sunscreen is made using non-nano zinc oxide and  protects your skin from the sun’s UVA and UVB rays.

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Oh-Lief Natural Body Sunscreen SPF30

R 249

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Back 2 Nature Face & Body Mineral Sun Shield.

This all-natural sunscreen provides broad-spectrum protection from both UVB and UVA radiation using non-nano zinc oxide. The non-comedogenic formula won’t block pores and is light enough to use on the face and body.

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Back 2 Nature Face & Body Mineral Sun Shield

R 375

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READ MORE ON: Beauty Beauty Tips Skin SPF Suncare

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