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The rising temperatures and the sun getting ready to unleash its fury on the Valley can only mean one thing: it’s almost summer! Experts say we should be applying a shot glass worth of sunscreen before stepping out and reapplying every two hours, and I know I speak for most when I say I don’t apply nearly enough. Although I wouldn’t recommend tasting this week’s recipe, it’s still something you can make in your kitchen on a dime and is super customizable! You’re essentially making a delicious body butter with zinc oxide and whatever scent, or lack thereof, you want. This recipe’s ingredient ratios are from the Pronounce skincare blog, and for wholesale prices, I bought my supplies from Suds n’ Scents, a mail-order soap company in Abbotsford.
Note: since we aren’t scientists, we can’t guarantee that this homemade sunscreen will be effective or have the reported SPF. However, we can say that the sun is dangerous; use only FDA approved products when you are in the sun for extended periods of time.
Ready in: 20 minutes
90 g coconut butter
65 g carrier oil (there’s a long list of them! examples include almond, jojoba, or olive oil)
29 g beeswax
28 g shea butter
2-3 g of fragrance or essential oil of choice
42 g zinc oxide powder (use caution: zinc oxide is dangerous if inhaled)
2.5 ml (1/2 tsp) Vitamin E (I popped open a vitamin E supplement)
Tip: The amount of zinc oxide used is enough for ~SPF 20+, but if you don’t need SPF that high you can settle for 5-15 per cent of the weight in zinc oxide instead. For the fragrance oil, I used Brambleberry’s online fragrance calculator which calculates how much to add for a light, medium, or strong scent. I’d aim light for the first batch to make sure it’s tolerable!
- Place a glass bowl on a kitchen scale and tare it while warming up a pot of water on the stove. Measure your ingredients together, taring in between, but leave the zinc oxide aside for now.
- Once the water has warmed, place your glass bowl on top to create a double boiler to gently melt the oils. Wait for the ingredients to melt completely before measuring your zinc oxide and adding it to the mix.
- Mix well to fully incorporate it, then pour into a container of choice and let sit.
Image: Chandy Dancey