Why is Zinc Oxide used in Organic Sunscreen?

Why is Zinc Oxide used in Organic Sunscreen?

zinc-oxide organic sunscreenWhat is Zinc Oxide?

Zinc Oxide is an inorganic compound. Its molecular structure is ZnO, appears as a white powder and is water soluble. It can be found in many  industrial purposes such as paint, rubbers, pigments, food and the list goes on. It occurs naturally as the mineral zincite, but mostly synthetically engineered.

Zinc Oxide in Sunscreen

There are many natural organic sunscreens in the marketplace today and they all offer something different. Different ingredients such as a variety of oils, butters, vitamin E and so on. The main and most common ingredient is Zinc oxide.

According to the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), any sunscreen can only be certified as such, if it has an “SPF” also known as sun protection factor. Most, but not all, sunscreens on the market, natural or not, have zinc oxide as it’s active ingredient. A sunscreen that has indicated that it is SPF 30 + has around 15-25% zinc oxide as its main ingredient.

The reason why zinc oxide is used so commonly in organic sunscreen is that it naturally helps to reflect the damaging UV-A and UV-B rays of the sun and is not an industry based metal, like titanium oxide, which can also be found as an active ingredient in sunscreens.

Although zinc oxide is not the organic component in sunscreen, a sunscreen can only be organic if it has an ingredient that is certified organic, such as the certified organic aloe vera ingredient that can be found in the Wotnot organic sunscreen

Zinc Oxide has been seen before.

Do you remember the days, when you would apply zinc based sunscreens to your face or body and you had the visible white stripes and lines on your face?

Well, now days, zinc oxide has been engineered or micronized (particles made smaller) and this has resulted in the compound to be easily blended with other ingredients to present a clear and non white appearance.

A question of nanoparticles.

Nanoparticles are small measures of matter that are microscopic in nature. Zinc oxide has been converted into nanoparticle sizes to reduce the white appearance when applied, yet there are some debates around the safety, as the particles are made smaller, they could potentially enter into the bodies system or blood stream.

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