Homemade Sunscreen Recipe

It's that time of year when we feel the sun coming into its full power. For some of us that means time to slather on sunscreen to avoid the burn. A significant amount of what goes on topically is also absorbed internally, so it's important to know what you're using to protect yourself. A great resource for this is the Environmental Working Group's database, which helps you to navigate the world of skin products. This year they also have created and shared a Guide to Sunscreens

Our skin is our body's largest organ, playing an important barrier role for our immune system and also is one of our main systems of elimination/detoxification. It didn't make sense to me to be coating it in anything less than wonderful. For the last 5 years I have been using a homemade sunscreen that has helped to both protect and nourish my skin, in addition to using a cover up during longer spells in the sun. Let me know if you have any questions, and enjoy the sun!


  • 1/2 cup almond or olive oil (can infuse with herbs like lavender first if you like)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (natural SPF 4)
  • 1/4 cup beeswax
  • 2 tablespoons Shea butter (natural SPF 4-5)
  • 2 tablespoons Zinc Oxide (natural SPF 20) *non-nano version which is not absorbed 

* A few notes about the zinc oxide - I had a hard time finding it locally so ordered it online - it comes in bulk so find some crafty friends to share with. Also beware not to inhale it, use a mask if necessary.

1. Combine ingredients, except zinc, in a large glass jar
2. Put a few inches of water into a pot and place over medium heat, place jar with ingredients into pot
3. As the ingredients start to melt in the jar stir them occasionally (I use a chopstick) 
4. When all ingredients are fully melted and mixed together add the zinc and stir well
5. Pour into small storage jars and do another quick mix to ensure the zinc is well blended
6. Store in a cool place and use as needed

  • Reapply after swimming
  • Use more beeswax to thicken, less for a smoother cream