Make Your Own Natural Sunscreen and Sunburn Relief

By Suzanne Tabert

Summer’s here! The weather is beautiful and we want to be out in the sun and enjoy all that nature has to offer. Whip up this easy-to-make and effective sunscreen to stay protected.

Natural Sunscreen

  • 12 ounces shea butter
  • 3 ounces olive or jojoba oil
  • 1/3 cup zinc oxide powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon each lavender and peppermint essential oils

Melt shea butter, take off heat, and add olive or jojoba oil. Allow to cool for 15 minutes and stir in the zinc oxide and essential oils. The zinc may want to settle to the bottom of the pot. Place the sunscreen in the fridge and stir every 5 minutes until the zinc stays emulsified but the sunscreen is still pourable. Pour into jars and use liberally before, during, and after sun exposure.

Sunburn Relief

If you do stay out in the sun too long, here is a recipe to cool the burn.

  • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon lavender essential oil

Mix oils thoroughly and apply gently to burned area. Use liberally several times a day as needed. Avoid contact with eyes. Lavender essential oil helps to alleviate sunburn and speeds healing. The olive oil is super moisturizing. Together, this amazing combo relieves sunburn and helps to prevent peeling.

Suzanne Tabert is a bio-regional herbalist, wildcrafter, founder and director of herbal education at the Cedar Mountain Herb School, teaching from a lifetime of personal and academic studies of plants and their habitats. She is a member of the American Herbalists Guild, the American Herb Association, and is practicum supervisor and adjunct faculty at Bastyr University.

Find more herbal recipes from Suzanne Tabert in the OTO archives.

[Feature photo: Soothing essential oils.]

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