Do You Know What’s In Your Sunscreen?


As the weather heats up, sunscreen becomes a crucial item for summertime activities. Whether you are laying on a beach, hiking or simply enjoying a barbeque in the backyard, a burn is something you definitely want to avoid. Unfortunately, some ingredients used in popular sunscreens are cancerous and many times, not protecting your skin at the level advertised.

Courtesy of

Courtesy of

It’s not all about the SPF
Most sunscreens put too much emphasis on their sun protection factor (SPF) when they should be providing you with details about their broad spectrum coverage. Broad spectrum means that a sunscreen protects you against both the UVB rays that cause sunburns as well as the UVA rays, which cause skin cancer and damage among other health problems. The SPF number only tells you about the length of time a product protects against UVB rays but tells you nothing about its strength or ability to protect against UVA rays. While many sunscreens on the market claim that they are broad spectrum, the FDA’s standards for making this claim are set far too low.

Hazardous Ingredients
Below is a list of several common ingredients to avoid when selecting sunscreen. For quality sunscreen suggestions, more information on hazardous ingredients and products to avoid, visit the Environmental Working Group’s sunscreen guide:

Mineral Sunscreens with Nano-Particles: The most commonly used nano-particles in sunscreen are titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. Nano-particles are substances, in this case heavy metals, shrunk down to microscopic sizes to avoid leaving white residue on your skin. The problem is that when you change the size of a metal, it no longer behaves in the same way. Before, these minerals sat on your skin and reflected the harmful ultraviolet light away. Now, because of their microscopic sizes, these metals can penetrate your body and blood stream. Dr Samuel Epstein, a medical doctor at the Univ. of Illinois in Chicago, feels that nano-particles are the most hazardous development in the field of cosmetics. Many health organizations strongly believe more study is necessary before deeming them safe. The FDA does not require nano-sized particles to be named in a manufacturer’s list of ingredients.

Oxybenzone:  Studies show that many people have an allergic reaction to this ingredient. Additionally, it is linked to endometriosis in older women and a lower birth weight of daughters from women with high levels of Oxybenzone. It has been shown to have a low absorption rate of UVA and has been banned in Sweden.

Vitamin A or Retinyl Palmitate and Retinol: This ingredient is often advertised as an anti-aging solution. However, studies have found that when placed on sun-exposed skin, vitamin A can actually increase the risk of skin tumors and lesions.

OHA’s Natural Sun Protection– Coming Soon!!
With all of these factors in mind OHA creator and expert formulator, Martha Buldain is working on a highly moisturizing, safe and clean natural sun protection lotion. This product uses all plant-based ingredients including red raspberry seed oil. Based on a recent study conducted by B. Dave Oomah, red raspberry is a natural UVA and UVB protector with an SPF between 28-50.

Stay tuned for more details on this exciting development!


  1. I think I have been using sunscreens with just UVB ray protection and not the UVA protection factor. This is something I have become more aware of over the years, so now I try really hard to just stay out of the sun. However, my kids love it and I cannot escape it entirely. I will look for hazardous ingredients next time I purchase sunscreen to try to protect myself further. Thank you for helping me to protect myself and my children too!

  2. どもー。通りがかりの者でとつぜんのコメントで失礼します。身体のいろんなところの日焼けってしんどいですよね、ほんとに。わたしも正直だいぶたいへんでしたが、あの日焼け止め買ってからいいかんじになりましたよ。

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