Wednesday, January 23, 2013

DIY Sunscreen or DDIY?

During my summer markets, I am constantly being asked if I make sunscreen. I have to explain over and over again why I don't make sunscreen for sale. I don't even make it for personal use.

I have explained that while I could do the research and figure out the exact amounts of certain minerals that you are supposed to use for a specific SPF and make it just like it says. I could even throw a bit more in the mix, just to be sure. However, sunscreens are regulated by the FDA as a drug and actually require testing to show how effective they are and to give the true SPF value.

I know plenty of people have their own feelings about the FDA, but there is good reason for this. Sunscreens are used to help prevent serious skin damage and cancers caused by the sun. Do you really want to use a sunscreen that SHOULD be effective? Or does using one that has been proven to be effective seem like a better idea?

When I explain this, I have some people that nod like I've helped them understand why it isn't a good idea to make sunscreen without testing; however, plenty walk away shaking their heads like I'm crazy. I'm sure there are micro-business owners like myself that do make and sell untested sunscreen, but for me and my family, DIY sunscreen is a big DDIY (DON'T DO IT YOURSELF)!

Interestingly, I was reading the Soap Queen blog and Anne-Marie did an interview with Amanda of Realize Beauty in which she discusses sunscreen testing and her interest in it. I would have eventually looked up her company, but this section led me to look up Realize Beauty right away and start browsing. I found a post about making your own sunscreen and found exactly what I'd been trying to explain!

DIY sunscreen sounds great! You could save money, control the ingredients that go in, use only the freshest ingredients, and no longer have to depend on some large company to do what you are perfectly capable of. However, there are way too many downsides to this DIY project to make it worth it. This is one of those things that should be left to the companies with the know-how and resources to make sure it is done right.