Natural, Non-Toxic Oils that Work Like Sunscreen


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Who can blame you for wanting to enjoy the summer sun but not wanting to subject your skin to the terrible toxic chemicals found in most sunscreens?

We have a list of top oils, direct from Mother Nature, that work much in the same way that sunscreens do — without the added chemicals. In one guide published in 2014, The Environmental Working Group reviewed more than 257 brands and more than 2,000 types of sunscreens. This study showed that about 75 percent of all sunscreens contain toxic chemicals that will be absorbed directly into your blood stream when applied to your skin.

These ingredients can cause everything from simple skin irritation to an increase in the risk of developing cancer. What kind of nasty ingredients are we talking about? Things like:

  • Octylsalicyclate
  • Para amino benzoic acid
  • Parabens
  • Homosalate
  • Dioxybenzone
  • Phenylbensimidazole
  • Menthyl anthranilate

Keep in mind that these are natural oils, so you can’t go out in the sun all day and expect one of these oils to keep you sunburn-free. Toxic sunscreens can’t do that either. These oils will, however, give you a certain level of protection without the unwanted, toxic ingredients that come with those over-the-counter sunscreens.

The good thing about these oils, besides being non-toxic, is that they will allow some of the sun’s rays to reach your skin, which means you will be getting some major vitamin D, something almost everyone in America needs. Using natural oils also means healthy-looking, baby soft, hydrated skin. Oils from nature contain healthy fats, vitamins that are good for the skin and tons of antioxidant power.

Keep reading and find the best oils you can use this summer for the best of all worlds: Vitamin D, plus non-toxic, vitamin-filled nutrition for your skin.

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Sunscreen woman putting sunblock lotion on shoulder before tanni

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1.  Red Raspberry Oil

This might be one of the best choices, even if is a bit hard to find. This oil has a high SPF (somewhere in the 30 to 50 range), which makes it better than chemical-laden sunscreens. In fact, you will find that many beauty products contain red raspberry oil because it is so good for the skin. This oil is very high in vitamin E, which regenerates and repairs the skin. This oil is also very stable, which means that it won’t spoil or go rancid before you can use it up this summer.

This oil would be perfect if it smelled like the fruit, but alas, it doesn’t. If you find it has a rather strong smell for you, don’t despair. It dissipates within an hour once you apply it.


2. Carrot Seed Oil

This oil is super concentrated, so if you like, you can mix it with another oil to help it go a little further and still be able to use it as an everyday sunscreen. The concentration can vary but the SPF is somewhere in the 30 to 40 range, which is on par with commercial sunscreens. This is another oil that you will find in numerous lotions and face creams due to the high level of nutrients like beta-carotene and vitamin A.

Now a word of warning: If you use too much pure carrot seed oil, you will get some nicely tanned, but orange-tinted skin.. So you should seriously consider diluting it with coconut oil or sweet almond oil — unless you want to look a bit like a giant carrot.


SEE ALSO: Severe Sunburns Early in Life Linked to Higher Melanoma Risk


3. Almond Oil

This beautiful golden oil from almonds is very easy to find and makes for a light, non-greasy sunscreen. Almond oil has an SPF of about 6 to 10, which is perfect for short outings.

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4. Coconut Oil

This sweet-smelling, easy-to-find and inexpensive oil is used by people all over the world for their skin care needs. Coconut oil has an SPF of about 6 to 10 and not only will keep your skin soft and smooth, but it will stop summertime acne or breakouts..


5. Wheat germ Oil

This oil might be a bit expensive, but it is well worth the extra money. Wheat germ oil is loaded with vitamin E and tons of antioxidants that repair the skin on a cellular level. Vitamin E can not only prevent sun damage, but it can also reverse some existing UV damange. Its high levels of antioxidants are one of the reasons people consume this oil internally as well.

There are other oils that have sunscreen abilities but perhaps lower SPF levels and fewer vitamins. These include:

  • Olive Oil : SPF 2-4
  • Shea Butter :SPF 3-6
  • Avocado Oil: SPF 4
  • Jojoba Oil: SPF 4
  • Sesame Seed Oil: SPF 4
  • Macadamia Nut Oil: SPF 6
  • Hemp Seed Oil: SPF 6

You can mix some of  these oils to make your own personalized sunscreen. When you add some essential oils, you can make your own signature scent and wear it all day long!

For example, you can mix ½ cup of coconut oil with five drops of carrot seed oil and about 10 drops of myrrh essential oil or another scent you like such as lemon, coconut or lavender. Mix these together (you might need to heat the mixture a bit to melt the coconut oil), and store in the container of your choice. A glass, amber-colored container is best to help preserve the oils and keep them from going rancid. If you keep the jar in a cool, dark place, the oils will be protected for about six months.

Always remember that your skin is your body’s largest organ, and whatever you put on your skin will be directly absorbed into your body and your bloodstream. So think twice before you put anything on your skin.