One thing that never fails to surprise me is where I find my little men’s allergens lurking. Food is the obvious place to look, but I also find allergens like nuts, egg, dairy, and wheat in soaps and lotions. I know, right!?!? It just goes to show that I must be diligent in reading EVERYTHING!
Over the years I’ve managed to find “safe” soap and lotion, but sunscreen has been the biggest challenge because many sunscreens contain nut oils. Most of the sunscreens won’t come out and say “peanut oil,” but did you know that many sunscreens contain ingredients such as arachidyl glucoside and arachidyl alcohol, both of which are peanut-derived? Lovely, right!?!? Of course, many claim that nut oils are safe if they’ve been refined in the correct way. If you ask me, that requires me to give the company the benefit of the doubt and to trust that it has been done correctly. I’m sorry, but our many cases of mystery hives would make me think and feel differently.
If your child has a peanut allergy and your sunscreen contains arachidyl glucoside and arachidyl alcohol, I would consult your doctor before using the product.
Every spring I set out on an online sunscreen hunt because I’ve struggled to find a “safe” sunscreen on store shelves. I begin my search with the Environmental Working Group’s (EWG) Sunscreen Guide. I don’t know if you’ve noticed but many of the sunscreens that can be found on store shelves contain lots of toxic chemicals. The more that I’ve begun reading labels for my little men’s allergens, the more that I’ve learned about the truth within our food and cosmetics industry. Let’s just say I’m NOT impressed! That’s why I love the EWG. They take the guess work out and help me make an educated decision about the toxicity of a product. Each item in their database is given an EWG hazard score. You can read more about the EWG Sunscreen Guide and their scoring process here.
Wondering what is in my pool bag this summer? I’ve included my favorite sunscreen brands below:
- Badger – I first love this brand because it has a low EWG hazard score (1). Secondly, their website is very helpful when trying to identify allergens. None of their products contain peanut products, but they have not claimed to be peanut-free because many of their products are manufactured at their subcontractors’ facilities. You can read all about their allergen statement here. If you have a tree nut allergy (Baobab, Cocoa, Coconut, Nutmeg, & Shea), gluten allergy, soy allergy or corn allergy, check out their FAQs page.
- Blue Lizard – I also love this brand because it has a low EWG hazard score (1). Their website states that they do not use any nut oils, peanut products or by-products, gluten or soy. WOOHOO! You can read more about their allergen statements on their FAQ page.
- California Baby – This product also comes with a low EWG hazard score (1). California Baby products are free of the top allergens, but they do contain coconut. You can read more about their allergen statement on their FAQ page. I also like California Baby because I can find these products in my local Target store.
- Vanicream – This product also comes with a low EWG hazard score (1). Are you seeing a trend for us??? The Vanicream website also states that it does not use any nuts or ingredients known to be made from nut sources. However, they do use coconut. You can read more on their FAQ page.
With summer just around the corner, you don’t want to be caught out for the day without a “safe” sunscreen. What sunscreens have you to found to be safe – or NOT safe for that matter?
**Disclaimer: Please note that every child’s sensitivity to their given allergen(s) varies. You should always check with the manufacturer to confirm that your child can have/use their product(s). **
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