Healthy Tip Tuesday: Can Sunscreen Actually Cause Cancer


 It’s funny, when you start to google ‘Sunscreen’ the search engine tries to predict what your going to ask, this time it continued with ’causes cancer’ as the first choice. ‘Sunscreen causes cancer’. To me, this proves that people are concerned about what they’re putting on their bodies, and rightly so, the plethora of choices we have for skincare is virtually endless! They make it all the more difficult when they throw terms like ‘natural’ ‘100% pure’ or smack some anti-oxidant/superfood on the label, when the contents are actually quite toxic and harmful.

I really wanted to share this post as I’ve noticed an influx of ads on the radio, online, in the newspaper (yes, I still read that) and elsewhere encouraging people to lather on sunscreen as we head into summer. I think it’s important for people to make informed choices, and I don’t think the big skincare companies are doing that for us (this is a multi-billion dollar industry where profits are of primary concern).

I am going to share articles I’ve found quite helpful and others articles like this one that beat around the bush and don’t answer the question at all. I actually found this article, from the website quite amusing. Someone posed a legitimate question inquiring whether sunscreen would increase their chances of cancer and they literally never answered the question. I hate to be one of those ‘extremists’ or ‘paranoid nature freaks’ but when you find information like this, you should question it.

So, let’s look at the question posed above: Can Sunscreen Actually Cause Cancer? I absolutely loved this article by Dr. Oz answering this question directly by stating that sunscreens are in fact harmful and most chemical (traditional) sunscreens have 9 endocrine disruptive ingredients which can affect hormones including estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and thyroid. He also states that these chemicals don’t just sit on the skin when applied, they are in fact absorbed into the bloodstream rather quickly. What’s even more frightening is that these toxins ‘scatter all over the body without being detoxified by the liver and can be detected in blood, urine, and breast milk for up to two days after a single application’, Dr. Oz continues ‘that would be just fine if they were uniformly safe – but they’re not’.

Another great article is on entitled ‘Is Your Sunscreen Causing Cancer? and highlights the negative effects sunscreen actually has on our bodies and hormones. Now I always love finding medical and scientific studies and reports on top of trustworthy sources and opinions, so I found this report completed by the School of Biological Sciences at The University of Reading in Reading, UK where they reviewed 4 years of research and found the presence of toxins (in sunscreen) in human body tissue. These toxins, parabens and chemicals have the potential to ‘increase female breast cancer incidence, to interfere with male reproductive functions and to influence development of malignant melanoma’.

How Do You Protect Yourself? Stay informed. Take a look at my previous post on sources you can utilize to ensure you’re buying safe, toxin-free products. Check out for helpful information and to review sunscreen products that are safe and toxin-free.

I want to leave you off with a few Toxin-Free Sunscreen Recommendations:

  • Graydon – Sun Cream
    Blended with skin soothing, sun protecting zinc (a naturally occurring mineral) and a host of sun reflective carrier oils, this light and highly moisturizing cream with SPF 30 will infuse your face and body with the protection you’ve been craving without any goo, grease or stickiness
  • Chocolate Sun  – Shea Butter Botanical Sun Defense
    Made with super hydrating Shea butter and a combination of all natural, minerals and botanicals high in antioxidants. Calming to the skin. SPF of 30.
  • Suntegrity – Unscented Sunscreen for Body SPF 30
    This mineral sunscreen will not only shield your skin from damaging UV rays but moisturize, heal and soothe without any residue or chalkiness.

Of course there are several other good brands too, the key is to do your research, look at the ingredients and when it doubt… put it back.

Did you find this article helpful? What are your thoughts on traditional sunscreen?

xx HBL



1 Comment

  1. June 2, 2015 / 3:20 pm

    Thanks Kami! I’m so glad you found it helpful, it was something that was on my mind too and I thought its such a great subject to share. Let me know if you get a good natural sunscreen 🙂

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