If you are trying to be more conscious about your skin and hair care choices, you may find yourself puzzled by the terms “natural” and “organic.” Is there a difference between “natural,” “organic” and “regular” sunscreen?
The answer is yes and no.
The FDA has set no standards regulating what constitutes “natural.” Many companies use the terms “natural” and “organic” interchangeably. However, informed environmentally conscious consumers have gotten wise to the label “natural.” Many companies use the term “natural” to entice people to buy their product when in fact most people would not consider the item natural at all. But since “natural” is an unregulated term, the companies get away with it.
Sadly, some products labeled “organic sunscreen” contain chemicals such as octyl methoxycinnamate, which the Organic Consumers Association has deemed as both a chemical and unsafe.
The bottom line is that you need to read the labels. Even if a product claims to be organic or natural, you need to be vigilant. If it’s a company you trust, then you can probably relax a bit. But when you’re buying from a new or unfamiliar company you need to pay close attention to the list of ingredients.
Organic sunscreen should contain non-synthetic or toxic ingredients. The National Organic Program (NOP) is overseen by the FDA. However, the FDA has no set definition of organic either. Like the marketing term “natural,” companies have a lot of leeway. However, the NOP has developed a definition as well as a labeling regulation based upon the percentage of organic ingredients in a product. Keep in mind, however, that the FDA does not enforce any of the policies. Thus, how much meaning do they really have?
So if you see sunscreen labeled as organic, it should have at least a percentage of organic ingredients and be clearly noted in their list of ingredients. It’s up to you to read the label. Natural sunscreen may mean nothing at all. Regular sunscreen will simply say “sunscreen.”
Organic sunscreen made by a reputable company, such as COOLA Suncare, or John Masters Organics, will be absent toxic chemicals and dangerous materials. Its ingredients will be good for the body, enhancing its natural defenses and resources. If you want to buy organic sunscreen, be sure to read the ingredient list carefully and educate yourself as a consumer. Most organic companies have a standard that they abide by. Thus, a company who routinely produces organic products would be a safe bet to produce organic sunscreen.
Organic sunscreen is a great way to protect yourself and protect the environment.
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