What is Clear Zinc Oxide Sunscreen?

What is Clear Zinc Oxide Sunscreen?

Many mineral sunscreens can leave an unsightly white or gray-ish residue on the skin. Non-nano zinc oxide enriched sunscreens with larger particles are more likely to leave this residue than sunscreens with smaller or nanoparticles.

In the past, there were few options for Clear Zinc Oxide enriched sunscreens that left little to no whitening and were free from harmful chemicals. Clear Zinc Oxide enriched sunscreens have many skin benefits and can be highly effective in protecting the skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays. Keep reading to find out more about the benefits of clear zinc oxide.

Clear Zinc Sunscreen Doesn't Leave White Cast


What is Zinc Oxide?

Zinc oxide is a mineral traditionally used in sunscreen products known to effectively protect the skin from the sun’s harmful rays. In addition to being widely used in sun care, Zinc oxide is also a prominent ingredient in skin care products for acne, burns, diaper rashes, and skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis. Zinc oxide has been known to have an ability to help calm, soothe, and moisturize the skin.

Clear zinc oxide is a UV filter that is compliant with the natural cosmetic standards of the Natural Products Association. This zinc oxide powder is made of micron-sized zinc oxide and is less whitening on the skin due to it not reflecting as much light as the typical non-nano zinc oxide particles.

Part of the clear zinc oxide is enriched with larger particles which makes it as efficacious as regular non-nano zinc oxide making it safe to use on the skin and non-harmful to the ecosystem.

Why Avoid Chemical-Based Sunscreen

Chemical sunscreens are made up of ingredients like oxybenzone, octinoxate, octocrylene, and avobenzone. Chemical sunscreens work by allowing UV light into the skin and transforming it into something not harmful. Since chemical sunscreens need to be absorbed into your skin, it can take up to 30 minutes for the sunscreen to become effective.

These chemicals have also been linked to coral reef damage and may also disrupt hormones and cause allergic reactions. You can read more about these here.

Mineral Based Sunscreens Are Better

Mineral sunscreens are made up of minerals zinc oxide and titanium dioxide as the active ingredients. These sunscreens work by sitting on top of your skin and bouncing UV light away, preventing UVA & UVB rays from penetrating the skin. Because mineral sunscreens sit on top of the skin rather than being absorbed, they become effective almost immediately. These minerals are natural ingredients which are ideal for sensitive skin.

Related Article: Mineral vs. Chemical Sunscreen

What does non nano mean?

When it comes to sizing, nano typically refers to very small or tiny particles, whereas non-nano isn’t as small. Mineral sunscreens can include nanoparticles, non-nano zinc oxide particles or both.

Typically, the larger the size, the better in relation to sunscreen. Due to the extremely small size of nanoparticles, it can be easy for them to deeply penetrate the skin and easily wash off when swimming in the ocean, which can negatively impact coral reefs. Non-nanoparticles are too big to naturally be absorbed by your skin, which makes them a healthier choice for your skin as well as the environment.

Benefits of clear zinc oxide sunscreen

Thinkbaby Clear Zinc Sunscreen

Non-nano clear zinc oxide can be very beneficial to the skin. As aforementioned, unlike chemical sunscreens, mineral sunscreens enriched with clear zinc oxide sits on top of the skin instead of absorbing into the skin, making it a safer, cleaner alternative.

When sunscreens absorb deeply into the skin they can also penetrate the blood stream and can even affect the lungs. Clear zinc oxide is a mineral sunscreen that works to protect the skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays while also moisturizing the skin and not damaging the ecosystem.

Think Sunscreens with Non-Nano Zinc Oxide

At Thinkbaby and Thinksport we only formulate mineral-based sunscreen solutions made of non-nano zinc oxide particles. Formulated with 20% non-nano zinc oxide and our scientific expertise in creating safer products, our sunscreen line is reef friendly and achieved the highest level of biodegradability testing. All of our sunscreens are enriched with vitamins and antioxidants to help moisturize and nourish the skin. Our baby and kid lines smell of fruity papaya and our adult line smells subtly of fresh currant & grapefruit. Thinksport also makes a tinted version that is perfect alone or as a base layer under make-up.

Regardless of which formula you decide to go with, rest assured you are using a safe sunscreen solution that is both safe for you and safe for our environment. Thinkbaby and Thinksport make a mineral sunscreen to suit every age and every activity. Our line of baby, kid, and adult mineral sunscreens are top rated by the EWG and have been selected for numerous awards such as “Allure Best of Beauty”.

Designed for an active lifestyle, our high performance, dermatologist tested ThinkSport All Sheer Mineral Sunscreen Spray is formulated with reef safe, non-nano Zinc Oxide and Titanium Dioxide for up to 80 minutes of sweat and water-resistant protection. Works to create a physical barrier from harmful UVA/UVB sun rays.

  • non-greasy application  
  • non-sticky formula 
  • air-powered spray 
  • broad spectrum UVA/UVB

Benefits of ThinkSport Mineral Sunscreen Spray

  • Provides healthy, broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection               
  • No PABA, parabens, phthalates, oxybenzone, avobenzone, petroleum, dioxane, gluten or dairy. No animal by-products or testing. 
  • Does not contain any chemicals known to be harmful to coral reefs.

“This is my go to sunscreen! - I use this anytime I know I am going to be in the sun for extended periods of time. It's safe! It smells good! It's thick enough to know it's working, but does rub in. I know it's saved my fair skin from sun damage over the years.” - ERIKA

ThinkSport Kids SPF 50 All Sheer Mineral Sunscreen Spray

ThinkSport Reef Safe Kids Sunscreen Spray - Non-aerosol

Whether at the beach or pool, this air-powered spray protects active kids at play for quick, no-fuss application. Our dermatologist tested, non-aerosol kids' sunscreen spray is formulated with reef safe, non-nano Zinc Oxide and Titanium Dioxide to shield kid’s sensitive skin from harmful UVA/UVB sun rays.

  • safe for sensitive skin
  • non-sticky formula
  • no-fuss application, sheer
  • broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection
  • Reef friendly

“...It rubs in without leaving a white coat behind. It does not have chemicals that cause cancer while trying to prevent cancer. It is does not harm coral reefs. [...] My hunt for the perfect sunscreen is over. I highly recommend this product” - JENNIFER

Think Everyday Face Sunscreen (2oz) - Naturally Tinted

Safe Everyday Face Sunscreen - Naturally Tinted

Enriched with Vitamin C & E along with a slight tint to reduce whitening from trace minerals, this ultra-moisturizing sunscreen can help to reduce skin aging when worn daily.

Quick drying and gentle enough for sensitive skin, this non-toxic formula provides a highly effective base for easy makeup application blending seamlessly into all skin tones.

“Great stuff! - This is the safest and BEST face sunscreen around! It leaves the perfect light tint to your skin, smells good, and actually made my fine lines look better.” - MARY L

Think Sunscreen SPF 30 Aloe & Tea Leaves

Aloe & Tea Leaves Sunscreen - Sensitive Skin & Reef Safe

Reef-safe and dermatologist recommended, our mineral sunscreen works to keep skin protected. This virtually clear and non-oily scientifically formulated eco-friendly sunscreen is infused with Non-Nano mineral Zinc Oxide to help shield skin from harmful UVA/UVB sun rays.

  • Applies and absorbs easily.
  • Water-resistant up to 80 mins
  • Broad spectrum protection
  • Biodegradable formula
  • Reef Safe formula

"I absolutely love this sunscreen! Not only did it protect my skin, but it left it soothed and moisturized and it wasn't sticky or oily."

      - Rocknessa

Environmentally friendly packaging

Thinkbaby and Thinksport sunscreens come in a tube made of environmentally friendly packaging that does not contain BPA, vinyl, or phthalates. Each tube is marked with an expiration date.

Learn More: How We Build & Testing and Chemical Policy

Note: The base formulations of our sunscreens are identical. We set out to make the most effective safe sunscreen possible.

While there are many sunscreens on the market, it is important to choose highly effective sunscreens that are free of harmful chemicals, enriched with non-nano zinc oxide, and reef-friendly. Be sure to check out our science-backed sunscreens for the whole family!

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