Did you know that many cosmetic products on the current market, including sun protective creams and lotions, contain animal products?
These products may be harmful to our skin, health, and the planet including the reefs of the ocean. Want to know more about cruelty free sunscreen? Check out our top ethical sunscreen choices below and why it is so important to find a natural and Eco-friendly product.
“The most important reason behind the use of sunscreen is that it shields us from harmful UV rays. It prevents premature ageing, tanning, sunburns, lowers blotchiness on the face, improves the health of the skin, and lowers the incidence of skin cancer”.
Know Your Labels
Listed below are a few of the main non-vegan products that are commonly added into sunscreen. Products used in sunscreen that are not ‘‘vegan friendly’ may include:
- Beeswax – added as an emollient in cosmetic products it can contain industrial insecticides which are harmful to the coral reefs.
- Chitin – previously derived from mushrooms this ingredient commonly comes from exoskeletons of crustaceans or insects and may be labelled as a polysaccharide in cosmetics such as sunscreen.
- Collagen – a protein that is found in the connective tissue of animals.
- Elastin – a protein that is found in the artery walls or other organs of animals.
- Lanolin – this is an animal based fat from sheep’s wool.
- Stearic Acid – this is an animal based fat commonly taken as a by-product from the meat processing industry.
Why does it matter?
Here are a few key reasons why vegan sunscreen matters this summer:
Environment: Sunscreen can contain animal products and the use of animal products in the cosmetic industry can cause harm to both animals and the environment. Many ingredients are a direct by-product of the mass animal agriculture industry. Vegan products select natural ingredients making them an ideal choice for anyone concerned with animal welfare and the planet.
Coral Reefs: It is estimated that around 14,000 tons of sunscreen lotion end up in coral reefs each year! Chemicals found in sunscreen can be harmful to the reefs and due to the concerns for juvenile reefs and marine life there are now a number of reef safe sunscreens on the market.
Chemicals: Plant-based organic products are kinder to our skin and are suitable for the more sensitive skin on our face. Avoiding harsh chemicals and additives such as parabens and preservatives is better for our overall health. Glowing, sun protected skin is possible through a range of vegan and ethical products. Choosing a chemical-free sunscreen or a paraben-free sunscreen is a great way to incorporate more natural products into your daily skincare routine.
“The active ingredients in typical sunscreens include chemicals like avobenzone, oxybenzone, octocrylene, and ecamsule. These work by absorbing UV radiation from the sun and converting it into a small amount of heat”. For those who want to avoid chemical-based sunscreens, an alternative is mineral sunscreens. These contain zinc oxide or titanium dioxide and sit on the skin’s surface and act as a shield.
Transitioning to a vegan friendly sunscreen is simple thanks to a range of wonderful products available in the UK. Each product in our Top 10 is vegan friendly, though just like make-up or perfume, you might have to try out a few brands to see what suits you best. Thankfully, vegan sunscreen is still an affordable and readily available product.
Top 10 Cruelty Free Sunscreen Products
Green People Natural and Organic Sunscreen
The Green People sunscreen is a broad-spectrum UVA and UVB protection lotion that is available in an easy-to-apply formula. The lotion is suitable for sensitive skin and skin prone to prickly heat. The packaging is fully recyclable and plant based!
“Green People offers a complete range of certified organic products for all of the family. Green People products are packed with up to 99% active natural and organic ingredients to protect, nourish, balance and, most importantly, respect your body”.
The sunscreen is water-repellent and moisture retaining meaning it allows your skin to breathe without clogging your pores. Green People is a company founded on a promise not to use aggressive ingredients, synthetic fragrances and to never test on animals.
We love them because: Green People’s Organic Sunscreen is rich in natural antioxidants to protect delicate skin with 84% certified organic ingredients including Aloe Vera, Green Tea & Edelweiss. They also make organic shampoos!
Omuci’s Nothing To Hide Cruelty Free Sunscreen
This beautiful oil free sunscreen is made from natural and environmentally friendly ingredients. It absorbs into the skin without leaving any sticky residue or whitening tones on the face. Omuci’s Nothing To Hide sunscreen contains no petroleum substances and is non comedogenic meaning it does not clog the pores.
“We at Omuci try our best to make great Nature & Skin friendly cosmetics products. We develop and test different ingredients and formulas to find the optimal solutions (we never do animal testing)”. Omuci uses the best available UVA & UVB sunblock on the market that does not contain micro plastic ingredients making it reef safe. A 100 ml volume tube is perfect for airport security restrictions.
We love them because: This is a simple formula and a natural product that is ideal for the summer months. A great gift idea or perfect for vacation in the travel friendly size.
Sun Bum Vegan Sunscreen Spray For an Easier Application
Sun Bum has a wide range of reputable products and this mineral range is fantastic all year round. The Continuous Spray makes application easy and the hand spray bottle can travel everywhere with you. This spray is water resistant for up to 80 minutes and it is reef friendly meaning it ticks all of the boxes.
This sunscreen spray is 100% vegan, will moisturise, doesn’t irritate the skin, and is safe for kids. The moisturizing sunscreen spray offers a SPF 70 with broad spectrum UV & /UVB protection that is hypoallergenic, free from parabens, and gluten free!
Additionally, it is tested, approved, and recommended by the skin cancer foundation.
We We love it because: Sun Bum does not use any ingredients that could harm people or the planet meaning their products are paraben free, sulphate free, gluten free, and safe for your family. Their mission is to be vegan friendly and reef safe and overall provide a variety of choices so there’s something for everyone.
BioEarth High Protection Sun Face Cream
This very high protection sunscreen by BioEarth is your best line of defence from the sunlight. A natural product that is formulated with Reishi Mushroom (speaking about mushrooms.. have a look at mushroom leather!), Green Tea, Aloe Vera, Sunflower Oil, Bisabobol, Helichrysum and Vitamin E works to counteract the signs of ageing and the formation of brown spots.
The formula is designed for very light and fair skin that tends to react and have hyperpigmentation from UV rays. The ingredients will protect the skin by keeping it well hydrated and preventing visible dryness. This will give the skin a natural appearance even in the heat without the need for harsh chemicals.
We love it because: This is a product designed for those who spend considerable amounts of time exposed to the sunlight or those with fair and sensitive skin. The special formula means it is a very high protection sunscreen with photostable filters for triple photoprotection.
Juice Beauty Moisturizing Mineral Sunscreen
Juice Beauty has created a wonderful mineral sunscreen that is both lightweight and moisturizing with an SPF 30. This is an intense formula that is rich in antioxidants including certified organic ingredients of grape, pomegranate, aloe vera and sea algae. This cruelty free sunscreen is also suitable for oily, combination and blemish-prone skin types as it is oil free.
Juice Beauty mineral sunscreen works to protect your skin with a broad spectrum non-nano natural mineral zinc oxide formula that blends and absorbs quickly into the skin. The ingredients work together to ensure your skin can retain moisture during the summer heat with vegetable hyaluronic acid and vitamins C, E and B5.
Juice Beauty is made without parabens, petroleum, propylene or butylene glycol, sodium lauryl sulfates, pesticides, phthalates, artificial dyes or synthetic fragrances. Their products are never tested on animals.
We love it because: This vegan sunscreen contains no chemical SPF ingredients such as oxybenzone, which are known for harming coral reefs. Instead, the product uses a reef-friendly mineral zinc SPF that offers broad spectrum UVA and UVB protection.
Ride Skincare Protect Sunscreen For Surf and Ski
Ride Skincare was crafted for the outdoor lifestyle and is your ideal sunscreen for adventure sports. This is a sunscreen designed for sports so you can cycle, run, surf and ski with this UVA & UVB broad spectrum protection lotion. It is SPF 25 and made from natural ingredients that are suitable for vegans.
This product is non-greasy and contains organic jojoba and coconut oil to soothe and hydrate the skin when it needs it the most whilst remaining light and fast absorbing. This can help protect your skin from the sun, wind and rain and has been tested to handle difficult conditions. Ride Skincare Protect Sunscreen contains no nano ingredients chemical sun filters or nasty preservatives
We love it because: Ride Skincare is made in the UK and comes in a 50ml travel ready size which is perfect for anyone who wants to take the product in the travel or sports bag for the weekend! Ride Skincare never tests their products on animals.
Alba Botanica Hawaiian Sunscreen
Alba Botanica Hawaiian Sunscreen has so many wonderful benefits it is hard to list them all! This is a Skin Cancer Foundation recommended product and contains no harsh sulfates, no artificial colours, no parabens or synthetic fragrances.
The Hawaiian Sunscreen formula is water resistant (80 minutes) and is free from ingredients which have been identified as harmful to coral reefs so it is ideal for swimming and surfing the ocean on your next holiday. The formula is effective, non-greasy and can be used for daily wear. The moisture rich lotion contains tropical fruit extracts which are gluten free and help to nourish skin that is exposed to the sun.
We love it because: Free of oxybenzone, octinoxate, PBA and Vitamin A, this lovely sunscreen uses natural ingredients such as aloe vera and sunflower oil which are biodegradable.
New Layer- The Cruelty Free Waterproof Sunscreen
This 100% vegan sunscreen does it all! The New Layer Reef Sunscreen is a SPF 20 UVA & UVB water resistant formula that is both fast absorbing and long lasting. The Vitamin D based lotion will help to protect your skin and allow your skin to breathe.
New Layer is reef-friendly meaning it is free from oxybenzone, avobenzone and nanoparticles as well as any microplastics, liquid plastics, mineral oils, silicones and parabens. It is dermatologically tested but never tested on animals.
We love it because: The scent of revitalizing rosemary and fresh fruits in this sunscreen is beautiful plus it is free of allergens and 100% plant based. This is a newly developed formula of Pro Vitamin D that acts as a UV-Filter for your skin. It also comes in a fully eco-friendly bottle!
Solde Luna Crafts – Ideal for sensitive skin
The Solde Luna Crafts Natural Sun Cream is a chemical and preservative free sunscreen that protects the skin and is ideal for those with sensitive skin or skin that reacts to the heat such as prickly heat or rashes. This formula is made with natural oils that do not clog or irritate the pores.
Solde Luna Crafts suggests this sun cream for use throughout the day, however, it is not waterproof or reef safe because of the oils used. The range has a Waterproof Sun Cream which is reef friendly so it is a great combination to have for summer. The oil based lotion should be reapplied every 2 hours to protect the skin from the sun.
The Sun Cream has an impressive list of natural plant-based ingredients including organic raw shea butter, babassu oil, jojoba oil, raspberry seed oil, arrowroot powder and vitamin E. The added zinc oxide is used to protect the skin from UVA & UVB to prevent it from burning. The formula is useful for itchy skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis due to oils known for healing and reducing inflammation.
We love it because: Solde Luna Crafts Sun Cream comes in lovely packaging so it is ideal for gifts or to put in your travel bag for summer. It also contains no nasties: no SLS/SLES, parabens, lanolin, urea, colourants, petrochemicals, irritating emulsifiers, phthalates, propylene glycol, alcohol, harsh foaming agents, synthetic fragrances or artificial colouring!
Kamilla Kosmetics Vegan Sunscreen
The name says it all; Vegan Sunscreen! The Kamilla Kosmetics Vegan Sunscreen has 30 SPF Sun Protection and protects your skin from sunburn whilst ensuring it is moisturized. The best part is that this formula glides onto the skin without leaving a white tone.
This vegan sunscreen contains natural oils such as red raspberry, sunflower seed, coconut and avocado oil. This sunscreen is also ideal for anyone who wishes to accelerate their tan safely with a new natural enhancer – the aqua mannose is used to create a natural healthy tan.
We love it because: Kamilla Kosmetics uses only eco-friendly packaging! A great option for shopping both eco-friendly and vegan.
So that’s it, our top vegan sunscreens for this summer; beautiful, natural and good for the planet! Vegan sunscreens are affordable and easy to find thanks to the increase in consumer demand and a desire for more eco-friendly products in every area of the cosmetic industry.
Have a fantastic summer and don’t forget your eco-friendly sunscreen is ready to be taken with you everywhere you go! By purchasing vegan products such as sunscreen you are making a positive contribution to the planet and to your health.
All products are available in the UK, and most of them ship for free!