Looking for a sunscreen that’s safe for both mum and baby? Let me introduce you to Sunumbra Sunkids SPF 40.
Gentle on the skin? Check.
No irritating UV filters that penetrate the blood stream? Check.
A lightweight texture that absorbs instantly? Check.
Intrigued? Read on:
What’s In Sunumbra Sunkids SPF 40?
Zinc oxide is my fave UV filter. This white mineral protects, on its own, from the entire UV range.
The best part? It’s so gentle on the skin, even babies can use it. It stays on top of the skin (where it needs to be to act as a defence against UV light) and doesn’t irritate it.
But… there’s a catch. Or two. Zinc oxide is thick and leaves a white cast behind. Sunumbra Sunkids SPF 40 solved the white cast problem by adding a light tint to the formula. No risk of looking like Caspar The Ghost.
Related: Why Zinc Oxide Is My Fave UV Filter
Did you know that antioxidants boost the protection of your sunscreen?
FYI, they’re not UV filters, so do NOT use them as a replacement for sunscreen. They just make it more effective. Here’s how:
No sunscreen blocks 100% of UV rays. Even SPF 100 blocks only 99%. SPF 40 blocks roughly 97%. So what happens to those 3% that make it through to your skin?
They start generating free radicals, the nasty molecules that give you wrinkles and make your skin sag. But, don’t fret. 3% is such a small %, you can neutralise these nasty buggers before they wreak their damage.
Enter antioxidants. They fight off the few free radicals that make it onto your skin, slowing down the aging process.
Sunumbra Sunkids SPF 40 has its fair share of antioxidants. Here are the highlights:
- Broccoli Sprout Extract: According to a 2007 study, it “reduces the inflammation and cell damage caused by UV rays” by boosting “the production of a network of protective enzymes inside cells that defend cells against many aspects of UV damage”.
- Black Tea Extract: According to a study published in the International Journal of Cosmetic Science, it helps to prevent “the skin damage and sunburn by absorbing UV rays and secondly, it repairs UV induced damage to the skin cells.”
- Astaxanthin: The reddish antioxidants that gives salmon and lobster their beautiful colours. According to Truth In Aging, it’s an “efficient absorber of specific ultraviolet sunlight rays that may contribute to skin aging and cancer.” It also has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
- Kigelia Fruit Extract: Derived from the big fruits of the kigelia africana plant cultivated in sub-Saharan Africa, it has antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties.
Related: How Do Antioxidants Work?
Remember when I said Sunumbra Sunscreen SPF 40 is safe for mum and baby? It is. Sort of. Let me explain…
It’s true this sunscreen doesn’t contain harsh chemical filters, preservatives, colourants or other common allergens that are known to trigger a reaction.
But… it has essential oils. Geranium and cedar wood, to be precise.
Wait, Gio! Essential oils are natural. That means they’re good, right? Not so fast…
There’a reason why these oils smell so good: to keep predators away. Their fragrances are their defence mechanism.
For most people, they’re harmless. But if you have sensitive skin, they can irritate skin or give you a rash. Don’t say I haven’t warned you!
For a mineral sunscreen, it’s rather lightweight. It’s not as liquidy as that of a mineral sunscreen, but it’s not a super thick goo either. It dries quickly, too.
A lovely herbal, floral scent.
How To Use
Apply it liberally over every area of exposed skin 20 minutes before leaving the house. Reapply as needed throughout the day.
How effective is your sunscreen? Sign up to the newsletter below to receive the “Sunscreen Audit” Worksheet and find out if your sunscreen is really up to the job:
Performance & Personal Opinion
Sunumbra Sunkids SPF 40 has a beige tint, so there’s no risk of it leaving a white cast on the skin. It doesn’t leave a brownish one either, in case you’re wondering.
The texture’s fairly lightweight for a mineral sunscreen, but not very moisturising. It won’t dry out your skin but it won’t hydrate it, either. If you have dry skin, you definitely need a moisturiser underneath.
I don’t mind that because the sun protection it gives me is top notch. Even on the hottest summer days in Italy, it keeps me safe from sunburns (and all the other evils the sun causes).
FYI, it’s water-resistant, too and will last you for around 40 minutes even after sweating (don’t ask me how I know). But do reapply it after that. Water-resistant doesn’t mean it’ll last forever.
I didn’t experience any irritation or anything, but then my skin is pretty resistant. Unless you’re sensitive to geranium or cedar wood, you won’t have any problem with it.
One last thing: this sunscreen didn’t clog my pores or give me breakouts. Phew!
Related: Do You Really Have To Reapply Sunscreen Every Couple Of Hours?
Who Is This For?
- Oily skin
- Combination skin
- Anyone looking for an all natural sunscreen that doesn’t leave a white cast behind
Who Is This Not For?
- Dry skin (unless you’re willing to wear a rich moisturizer underneath)
- Sensitive skin that reacts badly to essential oils
Sunumbra Sunkids SPF 40 comes in a sleek yellow and red tube that keeps its contents safe from sunlight (it would make the sunscreen go bad!).
Does Sunumbra Sunkids SPF 40 Live Up To Its Claims?
|Effective, stable, high level protection against both UVA and UVB radiation.||True.|
|40 minute water resistance||True again.|
|Contains a natural tint from the botanical ingredients.||Yes – it neutralises the white cast.|
|Can be used by anyone with dietary, environment or sensitive skin concerns.||Yes – unless you’re allergic to one of the ingredients (always check the label!).|
|It still contains our unique combination of plant extracts as the key ‘hidden secret’ to being able to substitute the harmful chemical filters found in almost all sunscreens sold today.||I love Sunumbra sunscreens, but not their marketing. Plant extracts are NOT a substitute for harmful chemical filters. They can’t block UV rays. While we’re on the subjects, chemical filters are NOT harmful. There’s no evidence they cause cancer, damage DNA and whatever other nonsense the natural brigade comes up with.|
|Protection from free radical damage and atmospheric toxins.||Yes, antioxidants help protect skin from free radical damage and pollution.|
|Active natural nutrients to reverse the effects of radiation damage.||There is evidence that antioxidants can reverse some of the damage, but they’re not miracle workers. That’s why you need sunscreen to prevent the damage in the first place!|
|Maximizes UVB, without burning, to maximise vitamin D.||I’m not sure what this means or why you’d want to maximise UVB. Sunscreens are formulated to protect you from them, not to maximise them!|
|Helps prevent sunburn.||True.|
Related: Vitamin D: How To Get Your Dose Without Skipping Sunscreen
Price & Availability
$28.70 at Sunumbra
Do You Need It?
If you’re looking for an all-natural mineral sunscreen, Sunumbra Sunkids SPF 40 is one of the best I’ve come across. It protects you from UV rays, free radicals and even pollution!
Dupes & Alternatives
Active ingredients: Zinc oxide 19% (non-nano, non-coated), de-ionized water, baobab seed oil, oliv oil glutamate, cetearyl alcohol, glyceryl stearate, carnauba wax, allantoin, kigelia extract, aloe vera extract, green rooibos extract, black tea extract, broccoli sprout extract, astaxanthin, xanthan gum, geranium oil and cedarwood Atlas oil