Spray Sunscreens: Convenient, but not worth it

While relaxing on the beach enjoying the afternoon, I couldn’t help but notice thick clouds of spray sunscreen blowing around. Parents forced kids still and coated them with chemicals, like they were spray-painting a piece of furniture. The kids squirmed and coughed, while most of the particles of sunscreen swirled in the opposite direction.


Spray sunscreens may seem like they’re the easiest and most economical sun care option, until you realize most of the product ends up going to waste. When spraying sunscreen outside, you have little control where the product goes. Not only are spray sunscreens a poor choice for your wallet, they’re also harmful to your body. Consumer Reports tests sunscreen every year and has announced that spray sunscreen ingredients can be lung irritants. Spray sunscreens have dangerous chemicals like homosalate, oxyticinate, avobenzone, and oxybenzone. When these chemicals are sprayed and inhaled they can cause skin irritation, hormone disruption and even cancer.

Aside from being hazardous for your body, spray sunscreen has also been reported by the Food and Drug Administration to be flammable because of alcohol and isobutane in the ingredients. The FDA has shared events where people wearing it near an open flame like a citronella candle, or grill suffered serious burns that required medical treatment. Coating your skin in these chemicals is like turning your body into a walking torch, literally spraying fuel all over yourself.


When using spray sunscreen on yourself or your kids, serious factors like health, safety, and effectiveness are important to consider. While spray is quicker to apply, convenience doesn’t always mean better. A mineral sunscreen lotion is the best option to protect your skin from the sun because it provides you with complete and effective coverage. You have full control of where it goes when you apply it, so you don’t have to worry about wasting product or your money. 

Selecting healthy products shouldn’t have to feel like a homework assignment. It’s exhausting squinting at every microscopic label trying not to get fooled into buying something harmful. It’s the best feeling when you find an effective and affordable product that is not only safe for your whole family, but also the planet.

Written by: Emily McDonald