DIY: Homemade Sunscreen


The skin is your body’s largest organ. It protects you and you have to take good care of it.  You may not be aware of just how important it is to know exactly what you are putting on your skin day after day. Sunscreen, which is supposed to protect your skin, may actually be poisoning you. Here at Daily Mom we are natural obsessed and want to provide our readers with an alternative to your everyday pharmacy sunscreen. Read on to find out how you can save your skin and save your money.

DIY Homemade Sunscreen

6 alarming ingredients in your sunscreen:

  1. Octinoxate: In a sunscreen with an SPF, this is the most commonly found chemical. This substance is known to cause hormonal disturbance and the effects on estrogen levels may be harmful.
  2. Oxybenzone: This is basically a chemical that helps other chemicals absorb into the skin better. This chemical can pile up in our bodies faster than we can actually get rid of it. That is why the Center of Disease Control and Prevention says 97% of Americans have this chemical moving around in their bodies.
  3. Octocrylene: This chemical can cause damage and mutation to cells when it is  visible to UV light. It is easily absorbed into your skin and will stay there in significant quantities.
  4. Retynil Palmitate (Vitamin A Palmitate): You would think Vitamin A was good because it is an antioxidant right? Think again. Its action in sunscreen is to help the product work against aging that can occur from UV rays. Vitamin A comes in many different forms and the kind used in sunscreen can be a cause for concern. When retinol compounds break down and are then exposed to sunlight, they produce harmful free radicals which can damage cells, DNA, and if that’s not bad enough, can cause caner. YIKES.
  5. Paraben preservatives: You can quickly recognize a paraben if you see words that start like these: butyl-, ethyl-, methyl-, and propyl. There are a variety of side effects that can come along with using parabens such as: hormone disruption, can bring on allergic reactions, and can cause developmental and reproductive toxicity. 
  6. Homosalate: This ingredient helps sunscreen absorb and penetrate your skin.  This ingredient will also absorb quicker in our bodies than we can get rid of it, causing it to become toxic and can disrupt our hormones.

After reading this list (and these are only some of the harmful ingredients found in sunscreen) do you really want to put any of it on your skin or your child’s skin? If not, we’ve got a great all natural DIY homemade sunscreen that has only FOUR ingredients. Better yet,  you can buy all of it at your local store. We are so excited to share this recipe with you! It will cost you approximately $15 and take you no more than 15 minutes. It’s that easy!

The level of protection is an estimate, and if in doubt you should reapply often or choose a lab-tested, all-natural SPF such as this Sunblock from Lavanilla.


DIY: Homemade Sunscreen SPF 30:


Makes approximately 11 oz (330 ml)

  • 3 Tbsp (1.5 oz) of beeswax: Buy here
  • 1/2 cup (4.0 oz) of shea butter: Buy Here
  • 1/2 cup (3.5 oz) of coconut oil: Buy here
  • 4 Tbsp (2.0 oz) of zinc oxide powder: Buy here
  • 3-4 drops of Lavender Oil (or your favorite essential oil) : Buy here
  • 1 tin or mason jar: Buy here and Here
The beeswax makes this sunscreen waterproof and the SPF 30 comes from the ingredients. Shea butter is a 6-10 SPF, the coconut oil is 6-10 SPF and, lastly, the zinc oxide holds an SPF Of 18-20 on its own. The more you add, the higher the SPF will be. To see a zinc oxide and SPF chart click here. By the way, you can also use this as a diaper cream.

Stop for a second, and take a look at the ingredient list. Four ingredients is all you need to make an amazing natural sunscreen for you and your family!

How To:

    1. Use the double boiler method. You can do this by placing a glass or steel bowl over a pot of boiling water. Make sure the water isn’t touching your bowl.  Add beeswax, shea butter and coconut oil and stir with a wooden spoon. Melt all the way down until it is completely liquid.
    2. Remove the bowl from the pot and add in the zinc oxide and drops of scented oil. Stir together by hand quickly and then mix with a hand mixer or blender until it is nice and smooth.
    3. Pour your sunscreen into a mason jar or tin can for safe keeping. Put it aside and let it sit for a few hours until it cools.

Wash your utensils right away or it will be very difficult to do later on.

Be sure to label your tin or jar with its contents and the date it was made. This sunscreen will last for approximately one year.
We all know the benefits of anything homemade and this sunscreen is perfect for you and the kids. You know exactly what is going on your skin, and it wont break the bank. Now that you have this quick and easy recipe, there is no need to ever go back to the pharmacy to spend money on a lotion full of chemicals.

If you are not the DIY type, you can also check out this post from Daily Mom on Safe Sunscreens for your Family.

This post is meant for educational purposes only. It is not intended to replace medical advice from your physician, doctor or health care professional. Please read our terms of use for more information.

Sources: Women’s Health, The Hippy Homemaker, Recipe adapted from The Humbled Homemaker
Photo Credits: Lauren Hardy




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Lauren Hardy
Lauren is a new mom living in Toronto, Canada. When she is not at home being a mom, she is working full time as a model, playing competitive baseball, and working on her personal blog. In her "spare" time, Lauren is aspiring to become a childbirth educator. You can find her at Lauren Hardy Blog

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