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Sunscreen Ingredients Information

Author: Mary Gillespie

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The American Academy of Dermatology recommends

  • A chemical or physical block applied to your skin and or SPF clothing
  • 4" brim hat and sunglasses

What's the difference?

  • A sunscreen is an SPF 2 and higher.
  • A sunblock has a physical sunscreen ingredient with an SPF 12 or higher.
  • Products often contain a mixture of physical and chemical block ingredients.


What is a physical and chemical sunscreen ingredient?

  • Chemical sunscreen ingredients absorb sunlight preventing sun damage, absorb into your skin, can cause allergic reactions, and burning eyes when perspiring.
  • Physical ingredients sit on your skin’s surface forming a protective barrier and don’t have the ability to be absorbed into your skin. Light is either absorbed into the ingredient or reflected away from your body back into the atmosphere, similar to a mirror or tin foil.

Physical ingredients

  • Zinc oxide protects you from UVB and most of UVA providing more UVA protection than titanium dioxide. Listed at the top of the FDA monograph as effective sun protection and considered the best broad spectrum protection. Zinc oxide is also known for its mild antimicrobial and wound healing properties.
  • Titanium dioxide protects you from UVB and short UVA radiation but not long UVA known to cause sun damage and aging in humans. Derived from the highly reflective chalky, white mineral, titanium, it's non-irritating, non-comedogenic, and for cosmetic use micronized by forming many small micro particles allowing your own skin tone to show.

UVA chemical ingredients

  • Avobenzone, Parsol 1789, Dioxybenzone (UVB, UVAII), Ecamsule, Menthyl Anthranilate, Meradimate, Oxybenzone (benzophenone, benzophenone-3), Sulisobenzone (UVB, UVAII).

UVB chemical ingredients

  • Aminobenzoic acid, Cinnamates (octyl methoxycinnamate (OMC), Ethylhexyl p-Methoxycinnamate, high incident of contact irritation, non comedogenic, widely used), Cinoxate, Dioxybenzone (UVB, UVAII), Ensulizole, Homosalate, Octocrylene, Octinoxate, Octisalate, Oxybenzone (UVB, UVAII), Octyl dimethyl paba, Padimate O, Para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA), Salicylates (octyl salicytate (OCS), high incident of contact irritation, widely used), Sulisobenzone (UVB, UVAII), Trolamine salicylate.

SPF Clothing, our favorite places

Sun Facts

  • 3 weeks is the time it takes for melanin to return to normal in your skin after stopping Retin-A, Renova, or other retinoic acid products to prevent sun sensitivity.

We stand behind our products 100%.

Skin Types and Sun Damage
SPF Sun Protection Factor
Sun Effects on Skin
UVA-UVB Sun Rays