5 Sunscreen Alternatives


Five Natural Sunscreen Alternatives

In Part One of our Sun Protection Blog Series, Hidden Dangers of Sunscreen, we talked about how sunscreen may be bad for your health and the environment.  

So how do we protect ourselves from harmful rays, while avoiding the problems associated with sunscreen?  Here are five great alternatives:

1. Raspberry Seed Oil

Raspberries are delicious and great for your skin

Raspberries are delicious and great for your skin

How it protects you

According to studies, Raspberry Seed Oil scatters and absorbs UV rays, and in turn may act as a broad spectrum UV protectant.  It is actually comparable to titanium dioxide preparations, and offers protection of about 28-50 SPF.

How to use it

Our Natural Sun Protection Lotion is chock-full of Raspberry Seed Oil, soothing aloe vera, and green tea extract (we’ll talk more about that, later!).  It is non-greasy, natural, free of chemical smells, and is great for sensitive skin.

We love Raspberry Seed so much that we put it into every one of our moisturizers.  Because of this, and the natural UV protection from other unrefined oils, all of our moisturizers offer natural sun protection benefits.

If this oil is so great, why isn’t it a mainstream sun care product?  

The thing is, it isn’t a particularly cheap or plentiful oil.  It is made from raspberry seeds… those tiny little things that get stuck in your teeth.  It takes an enormous amount of those minuscule seeds to make the oil.  Also, getting it approved would cost millions in research and legal fees.

People want cheap sunscreen, regardless of what is in it.  So for most companies, an oil like this isn’t worth it.

We feel that the benefits really outweigh the cost.  

There are so many nasties in mainstream sunscreen– they can do terrible things to your body and the environment.  Plus, there are other really wonderful qualities of products like Raspberry Seed Oil– it works wonders on acne, ecxema, psoriasis.  It is also a great anti-aging remedy, since it reduces wrinkles and fine lines, improves elasticity, and moisturizes your skin.


2. Astaxanthin

5 Natural Sunscreen Alternatives

Astaxanthin is a deep red cartenoid– an organic pigment found in microalgae.  It gives some forms of marine life, such as salmon and shrimp, their reddish hue.

How it protects you

Astaxanthin protects your skin from the sun by scavenging the free-radicals that cause damage.  It is stored in your skin, and is distributed through all of the layers, providing deep protection.  This provides consistent protection against ultraviolet radiation, which is the most powerful environmental risk factor for skin cancer.  Sunscreen only protects the top layers of skin, and washes off easily.

Studies show that Astaxanthin can also help with macular degeneration, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, fertility, diabetes, cardiovascular issues, skin aging, and many other health concerns.

How to use it

In order to get the ultimate sun protection benefits from Astaxanthin, take it internally, daily, for several weeks– this allows it to build up in your system.  It is a good idea to also apply it topically.  We include it in our daily-use  Advanced Treatment Serum.  We have you covered!


3.  Green Tea

Drink two cups a day, and/or apply topically!

Drink two cups a day, and/or apply topically!

How it protects you

Along with many other potential health benefits, the catechin metabolites in Green Tea can protect your skin from sunburn inflammation and longer-term UVR-mediated damage.

How to use it

These catechins make up quite a bit of the tea, so you only need to drink two cups a day to have noticeable results.

Another great way to harness the power of green tea is to apply it topically.  We carry a Green Tea Cleansing Mist, which is a refreshing pre and post-sun treatment.  Many of our other products include green tea extracts, as well.


4. Shade your skin from the sun

Our favorite option is linen. It is light enough to keep you from overheating, while protecting you from the sun. Pair with an enormous, floppy hat, for effortless chic.

Our favorite option is linen. It is light enough to keep you from overheating, while protecting you from the sun. Pair with an enormous, floppy hat, for effortless chic.

We all know to do this, but let’s face it– we don’t want to. Limit your exposure to sunlight by wearing clothing that covers your skin, and accessories like hats and scarves.  There are actually some really great, stylish options out there, if you look!

Dark and vivid colored, tightly weaved fabrics offer the best protection.  However, anything is good!  Clothing is the best way to protect yourself from ultraviolet rays.


5. Don’t avoid the sun (completely)

Avoiding the sun altogether isn’t great for you, either. Getting a little sun can do you good!

Avoiding the sun altogether isn’t great for you, either. Getting a little sun can do you good!

How it protects you

Exposure to sunlight increases your Vitamin D.  Vitamin D deficiency is linked to Breast Cancer and colorectal Cancer. Other benefits of sunshine include helping you sleep, lowering your blood pressure, protecting you from melanoma, and raising levels of serotonin– thus improving your mood and energy level.

How much you need

10-15 Minutes of sunshine a day is recommended for getting all of the benefits.



If you must wear sunscreen…

Avoid sunscreens that contain Retinyl Palminate (Vitamin A), oxybenzone, Titanium dioxide nanoparticles (TiO2 NPs), and insect repellent.  Also, avoid sprays, as sunscreen may be harmful if inhaled.


Now go outside and enjoy some sunshine!  


Any questions or comments?  What are your suggestions for natural sun protection?  Let us know, in the comments below!  

Five Natural Sunscreen AlternativesDisclaimer:  I’m not a doctor.  I’m just a blogger with an interest in skincare.  A lot of research went into this, however you should always do research for yourself, especially when it comes to important things like protecting your skin and body from disease.  This is your health–don’t mess around!  Also, make sure to consult your doctor, dietitian, or other medical professional, before ingesting or applying any of these products.  








May 10, 2016 by Brianna Karle, Resident Beauty Blogger

About Brianna Karle

Brianna Karle is a beauty blogger with a strong interest in natural, sustainable, and cruelty free beauty.


  1. Thank you for this practical and informative information. I believe the sun is a good thing AND it it potent and to be respected.

    • Brianna Karle says

      Hi Renee! Glad that you liked it! We completely agree. Well protected sun worshippers, over here 🙂

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