Sun Safety Natural Skin Care Guide

Shedding Light on Natural Sunscreens and Safer Sun Protection


Non-nano Zinc Oxide Sunscreen is Best

Of the ingredient choices available to formulate a physical sunscreen, two are most commonly used: titanium dioxide and zinc oxide.

Non-Nano Zinc Oxide is Best!

We at MVO use only non-nano zinc oxide because it provides longer-range, more stable and safer UV protection than its mineral counterpart titanium dioxide. Below are just some of the research findings that support this decision.

Broad spectrum protection

There is increasing evidence that long wave ultraviolet (UV) radiation (UVA; 320–400 nm) plays an important role in the pathogenesis of various skin disorders, from polymorphous light eruption to photoaging.

UVA radiation induces mitochondrial DNA mutations leading to photoaging as well as other more serious consequences. Studies indicate that zinc oxide provides better protection in the above mentioned 340 to 380 nm range than titanium dioxide.

In addition to damaging DNA, UVA radiation generates free radicals, which, within human skin also cause allergic reactions and photoaging.

According to an EPR study, sunscreens containing titanium dioxide produced ROS (reactive oxygen species) upon photoexcitation. This is because, contrary to conventional wisdom, TiO2 actually absorbs about 70% of UV light, leading to the generation of the hydroxyl radical.

In other words, titanium dioxide acts more like chemical absorbers such as oxybenzone or octyl methoxycinnamate than a physical blocker. Zinc oxide, on the other hand, works by scattering and reflecting UV light rather than by absorbing it, and hence is more stable.


Because zinc oxide reflects and scatters UV rays rather than absorbing them, it protects more effectively across a broader spectrum than titanium dioxide, without generating free radicals.

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In this Guide

Safe Sunscreens 101

Natural Sunscreen Questions and Answers

Non-Nano Zinc Oxide Sunscreen is Best

Say No to Nanoparticles in Sunscreen

Nanoparticles and Free Radicals

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