*Jacqueline’s note: Andalou Naturals has updated their facial sun protection. Pictures and links to the new, AWESOME product revamps below!
Hear me out: It’s difficult to find a decent natural sunscreen. Most of them make my face shine like a disco ball. So I set out to find broad spectrum protection that works under makeup and won’t turn me into an oil slick by mid-afternoon.
What it Does
The Oil Control Beauty Balm SPF 30 by Andalou Naturals is a miracle worker. Not only does it melt into skin without a trace (an admirable feat for a zinc oxide sunscreen), its finish is the perfect balance between matte and dewy, just as skin naturally strives to be.
Inside the Ingredients
Ingredients: non-nano zinc oxide (20%), organic aloe, organic jojoba and sunflower oils, sorbitan stearate, glyceryl stearate, organic fruit stem cells (from apples & grapes) and BioActive 8 Berry Complex (from organic acai, aronia berry, bearberry, bilberry, black elderberry, goji berry, rosehips, and sea buckthorn berry), caprylic/capric triglycerides, hyaluronic acid, sage, organic saw palmetto and willow bark extracts, organic pomegranate oil, magnesium ascorbyl phosphate (vitamin C), algae extract, zinc gluconate, magnesium sulfate, rooibos, organic rose mallow and white tea extracts, phenethyl alcohol, ethylhexylglycerin, organic tangerine & palmarosa oils.
|Extremely Safe||Reasonably Safe||Proceed with Caution||Insufficient Data|
Zinc oxide is the gold standard for nontoxic sunscreen. It offers broad spectrum protection, defending your skin from a wider range of UVA rays than titanium oxide or chemical sunscreen agents. Zinc oxide doesn’t disrupt hormones and remains relatively stable when exposed to sunlight (which, shockingly, is a trait some popular chemical sunscreen agents lack). And considering there’s no solid consensus on the safety of nanoparticles, this “non-nano” zinc oxide is worthy of merit. Besides, in mineral sunscreens, as the size of sunscreen particles decreases, the UVB protection rises while the UVA protection decreases. Yikes. Since UVA protection is crucial for healthy skin aging, I’ll take all I can get!
SPF only measures protection from one type of UV radiation, UVB. But it is UVA rays which lead to wrinkling, sagging, splotchy prematurely-aged skin. UVA protection is not accounted for at all in SPF. Remember, “UVB: B is for Burning” and “UVA: A is for Aging.” So while an SPF 30 offers 97% protection from UVB rays, non-nano zinc oxide is your best bet for thorough UVA protection.
The Matte Effect
The mattifying effect in this beauty balm is achieved via zinc gluconate, which not only absorbs excess oil, but soothes any blemishes or inflammation. But the zinc gluconate in this formulation doesn’t over-mattify or make skin look flat or pasty. It simply leaves skin balanced and soft, without the threat of encroaching oiliness.
Where to Purchase
Andalou Naturals has updated and improved their natural sunscreen since this post was originally published. It’s rather fabulous, to be perfectly honest. Here’s what they’ve got:
- Argan Stem Cell BB Benefit Balm Un-Tinted SPF30, mattifying and anti-aging with zinc oxide protection ($20)
This product is part of my popular guide to natural skin care, Natural Skin Care: 99 Amazing Products to Transform Your Skin.*This post is not sponsored. All opinions are my own. **Products get makeovers too. Be sure to check if this product has been recently re-formulated before using it yourself.