Last week I shared that I am a Goddess Garden Sunscreen ambassador. I got a lot of positive feedback from my announcement, but a few people reached out to me privately and asked why I felt so passionately about organic sunscreen.
They wanted to know if organic sunscreen was “just a gimmick” and why it needed to be organic if I wasn’t eating it.
Those are both really good questions and I’m glad they reached out and asked me as I sometimes forget that everyone is in a different place when it comes to the road to healthy living. (By that I mean that I am still so near the starting line that I imagine everyone else already knows more than I do!)
When you think of your important organs, you usually think of the heart, brain, or any of the other parts living in our torso. I’ll bet you get through at least 10 before you think to name your skin as an organ. Not only is an important organ, it is your largest one! Because it is porous in nature, it is logical that what we put on it winds up in it, right?
But just how much of what we slather on becomes part of us?
A study published in the American Journal of Public Health looked into the skin’s absorption rates of chemicals found in drinking water. It showed that the skin absorbed an average of 64% of total contaminant dosage.(Brown et al. The role of skin absorption as a route of exposure for volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in drinking water. Am J Public Health. 1984 May; 74(5): 479–484.) Just think about all of the medications that are designed to be worn on the skin – seasickness patches, nicotine patches, etc. Obviously those are entering the bloodstream by way of skin absorbtion.
Once you realize this, you start to look at the things you put on your skin a lot more carefully.
That sunscreen I had been loyally slathering on myself to “stay healthy”? It contained a laundry list of chemicals I would never dream of putting in my mouth. What kinds of things will you find in many “conventional” sunscreens? One main ingredient is oxybenzone which is found in 80% of chemical sunscreens. The Federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has detected oxybenzone in more than 96% of the US population, with higher concentrations found during the summer months. Here is where oxybenzone lands on a scale of toxic sunscreen ingredients. Not cool.
So, now I’m sure you are wondering what is in Goddess Garden sunscreen, right?
The main ingredient Goddess Garden uses to protect skin from the sun is made of minerals. Personally, I feel much better putting minerals on my skin than a chemical I can barely pronounce. How about you?