Badger Natural Sunscreen FAQ

We've compiled this list of commonly asked questions about our natural mineral sunscreens. If you don't find your answer here please email us at: and we will reply as soon as possible.

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Using Badger Sunscreens
Sunscreen Safety & Other Concerns
Tinted Sunscreen FAQs
Label & Ingredient Questions
General Sunscreen Questions

Organic Sunscreen

Using Badger Sunscreens

-How much sunscreen should I apply?

The FDA tests sunscreen's SPF using 2 milligrams of sunscreen per square centimeter (2mg/cm2) of skin. This is about 1oz for a full adult body (about a shot glass full) or about 1/3 of a teaspoon to cover your face. It's nearly impossible to actually measure and evenly apply sunscreen according to these guidelines, so we suggest applying a visibly whitening coat of sunscreen to all exposed skin and rubbing it in to reduce the whitening effect. To ensure that you have achieved full and even coverage, let this coat dry/sink in for 15-30 minutes and then reapply. Think of it as a base coat and finish coat.

To maintain maximum effectiveness, sunscreen should be reapplied at least every 2 hours and directly after extended swimming or sweating. For sensitive skin, apply a small amount of the product to test before full use. Keep out of eyes and keep off broken or unhealthy skin. Adult supervision recommended when using this product on children. If separation in product occurs, knead tube to remix product before use.

-Does sunscreen expire? Where do I find the expiration date?

Badger sunscreens have a shelf life of two to three years from the date they are manufactured (depending on the product). That is the expiration date that is printed on the crimp (top edge) of the tubes. The product should remain good for use for one year after it is opened, or until the expiration date has been reached. We cannot guarantee that an expired product will adequately protect you from the sun and you should replace the tube. Note: Extreme temperature fluctuations may cause the natural ingredients in these products to expire early. We recommend that you store Badger sunscreen in temperatures below 90 degrees F.

-Can I wear makeup over your sunscreen?

Yes. Our SPF30 Unscented Sunscreen Cream tested as non-comedogenic meaning that it will not clog pores and can be worn under makeup. We did not test our other sunscreens creams for non-comedogenic, but they are all essentially the same formula with minor changes to the essential oil blends for different scents (except for the SPF34 Anti-Bug Sunscreen which has a different base formula).

-Can I wear lotion under your sunscreen?

Yes, as long as the lotion is completely absorbed before applying the sunscreen. If sunscreen is diluted, the SPF may decrease significantly and will not offer as much protection. However, you may find that you do not need a lotion if wearing Badger Sunscreen! Each tube and bottle of sunscreen contains powerful natural moisturizers and antioxidants that nourish and protect your skin.

-Can I mix your sunscreen with my own face cream/makeup tint?

No. It is not a good idea to mix the sunscreen with another cream, makeup, body lotions, water, coconut oil, etc. This would dilute the sunscreen reducing its SPF and compromising your sun protection.

-Can I use your non-baby sunscreens safely on my baby?

All of our sunscreens are totally safe and effective for the whole family. The only difference with our Baby Sunscreens is that we added Organic Roman Chamomile and Organic Calendula for their calming and soothing effects. We recommend that you check with your pediatrician if using our Anti Bug Sunscreen on infants as it contains added essential oils for maximum bug repellent efficacy. The FDA recommends that you consult your pediatrician or doctor when using any sunscreens on infants under 6 months of age.

-How much sunscreen should I put on my baby?

Since babies come in all shapes and sizes, the best way to ensure sufficient sun protection is to apply a generous amount of sunscreen to your little one, then rub it in. Remember to reapply at least every 2 hours, even if baby is in the shade!

-Why did oil come out of the tube when I squeezed it?

Since the ingredients in our sunscreens are natural and organic, and we don't add any synthetic ingredients, they sometime become partially separated over time or from exposure to big temperature changes. Simply squeeze out and dispose of the little bit of oil on top and you should see the sunscreen cream follow. Once the oil is removed the sunscreen is safe to use. Do not apply straight oil to your skin before sun exposure. If you are unable to squeeze off or re-mix the zinc oxide and oil, it's probably time for a new tube of sunscreen. Please call their customer service team if your product has not passed the expiration date.

-Does zinc oxide sunscreen stain clothes?

If you let the product soak into the skin for a few minutes before letting fabric touch it directly, you can reduce the chance of stains. It is best to rub the product onto the skin well and let sit for a moment to allow the mineral particles to spread out evenly over the skin. The best way to remove a zinc oxide and oil stain is by applying watered down rubbing alcohol (50/50) directly to the stain then dabbing gently to lift the stain.

If you do not have alcohol on hand, stains resulting from natural oils may be removed that same way you would remove a salad dressing stain: apply a dish soap directly to the stain (because regular laundry detergent does not contain oil-removing properties), then launder as normal. It usually does the trick!

-How do I wash your sunscreen off of my skin?

The best way to remove Badger sunscreen is to get a really good lather going with a natural soap, warm water, and a loofah (or a sponge or washcloth) and gently rub off the sunscreen. Some customers have recommended using oil, such as Badger's Face Oil, to remove sunscreen from the face area. Of course, Badger sunscreens contains rich moisturizing ingredients that absorb into the skin as you wear the product, so you may still feel these moisturizing effects even after washing. The all-natural, organic ingredients will continue to soothe and nourish even after you have removed the active sunscreen ingredient--You might not even need a post-shower moisturizer!

Sunscreen Safety & Other Concerns:

-Why did I get a sunburn while using your sunscreen?

We pride ourselves in making the safest and most effective sunscreens available and we care deeply for you, our customer, and for your wellbeing. We hope that our answers below might help you to understand how you might have been sunburned while using our product.

Applying mineral sunscreens can be challenging, and incorrect application can result in less protection. Learn how best to apply Badger sunscreen. Here are the top reasons why you may have gotten burned while using a Badger Sunscreen.

You did not apply enough. Mineral sunscreens can be thicker than chemical sunscreens and somewhat harder to apply. People often apply far too little of mineral sunscreen. Applying half the amount of sunscreen you should use provides only the square root of the SPF, so a half application of SPF 30 only gives you an SPF 5.5. See above question on “How do I use Badger Sunscreen” for the amount you should apply.

Some of your sunscreen washed off in the water or by sweating, or it was rubbed off on clothes or a towel. Remember, mineral sunscreens like Badger sit on top of the skin and can be rubbed off. We, the FDA, and all sunscreen manufacturers recommend reapplication every two hours, and after swimming, sweating, or towel drying.

Some medications make you more sensitive to the sun. Please read more about any medications you may be taking and please take any ‘avoid the sun’ warnings seriously.

Your tube of sunscreen has compromised stability due to poor storage or is expired.

* Please contact our customer service team if you have any further concerns or questions.

-Are any of your sunscreen citrus essential oils phototoxic or photosensitizing?

No. In general, only essential oils with high levels of furanoids will be phototoxic or will cause photosensitivity. We intentionally chose to use Sweet Orange and Tangerine because they are among the few citrus essential oils that are not phototoxic. Just to be safe, we tested our kids sunscreen formula for phototoxicity (the results of which came back negative). See our test results.

-Are your mineral sunscreens with zinc oxide whitening?

You should expect some whitening with any mineral-based sunscreens, unless it contains nano- particles. Most of the initial whitening from Badger sunscreen will disappear as you rub the product into your skin. Our SPF15 sunscreen has less zinc oxide in it and is less whitening and our tinted sunscreens and another option to reduce whitening.

-Where do Badger Sunscreens rate on the Environmental Working Group's (EWG) Skin Deep Cosmetics Database?

Why not see for yourself? You can even see how all of our other Badger products rate for safety. Learn more about our Sunscreen Reviews, Awards & Recommendations.

-Will I still get vitamin D if I wear sunscreen?

There is no such thing as a complete sunblock, so some sun rays will reach your skin even when you are wearing our highest SPF sunscreens. Consult with your healthcare professional to assess your Vitamin D intake and needs.

-Does zinc oxide cause free radical damage?

We take the safety of our sunscreen very seriously so we're constantly reviewing emerging research regarding the subjects of zinc oxide, nano particles, and potential free-radical damage. Since the zinc oxide particles do not penetrate the skin, any free radicals they might generate would only reach the stratum corneum, or the outer dead layer of skin, and not any living cells. Therefore we do not consider this to be a health hazard.

No single sunscreen active ingredient has a better track record for safety than zinc oxide. Its strong overall safety record is why Badger has chosen non-nano zinc oxide as the active ingredient for our sunscreens. In addition, Badger sunscreens contain naturally occurring antioxidants, such as vitamin E, that help to neutralize free radical activity. More about our Zinc Oxide.

-What could happen if my child licks or ingests some sunscreen?

Though we use the safest most natural ingredients available, our sunscreen is not meant to be ingested. It should be fine if your child licks her or his hand after Badger sunscreen has been applied, however, you should seek medical attention or contact a poison control center if your child has consumed a significant amount of sunscreen (and bring in the package so the practitioner can read the ingredients).

-Why are natural sunscreens more expensive than regular chemical sunscreens?

The price of ingredients in our natural sunscreens is significantly higher than the price of ingredients in chemical sunscreens. For example, the main base ingredient in most conventional sunscreens is water; the main base ingredient in Badger's sunscreens is Organic Sunflower Oil . Additionally, the zinc oxide used in all of our sunscreens is the single most expensive active ingredient used in sunscreens. Most common sunscreens are made entirely of relatively inexpensive synthetic chemicals, which is why they are so cheap. We believe that the natural ingredients we use make our products better, but they are also more expensive.

-Do you sell Badger sunscreens in larger containers?

We are working on creating larger tubes of our sunscreens. In the meantime, give us a call to ask about bulk order discounts if you require a large amount of sunscreen.

-Why don't you make higher SPF sunscreens?

Sunscreens with really high SPFs, like SPF 50, SPF 75 or SPF 100, do not offer significantly greater protection than SPF 30 sunscreens. In addition, these very high SPF numbers can provide a false sense of security, encouraging people to spend more time in the sun, and sometimes causing people to get burned. SPF 15 blocks 93% of UVB rays, SPF 30 blocks 97% of UVB rays, and SPF 50 blocks 98% of UVB rays - as the SPF numbers get larger, the margin of improvement gets smaller. Learn more at our SPF ratings page. Finally, it is very difficult to attain higher SPFs with just using mineral active ingredients.

-Why don't you make spray-on sunscreen?

Not all sunscreen sprays are created equal. We feel that there is a safety concern with the aerosol type spray sunscreens and the fine particle mist they create. This type of "spray sunscreen" is too easy to inhale into the lungs, especially for kids. This type of spray-on sunscreen also goes on invisibly making it difficult to determine how much has been applied and where, often resulting in inadequate protection. We do, however, believe that a sunscreen lotion in a non-aerosol spray pump could be safe and provide added ease of application.

Tinted Sunscreen FAQs

-Will your tinted sunscreens match my skin?

This product is designed to be used for all skin tones. Although this “sheer tint” will not match perfectly, it will minimize the whitening effect some people experience with our non-nano zinc oxide sunscreens.

-Why do you only have one shade of tinted sunscreen?

The lighter shades we tested did not do as much to curb the whitening effect and the darker shades meant using ingredients that did not align with our philosophy of formulation. Instead we are releasing a sheer tint sunscreen that compliments the widest range of skin tones.

-Is the Rose Tinted Sunscreen Lotion a make-up product?

No, this tinted sunscreen was not created to be a make-up product. While this product is non-comedogenic (will not clog pores) and is safe to use on the face, it is not intended to be a beauty or make-up base. Please note: using a liquid foundation over the sunscreen could potentially wipe some of the product off, which significantly compromises protection.

-Will the tinted sunscreens stain my clothes?

The tinted sunscreens use mineral pigments for color and they can discolor clothing, although it will wash out in most cases. Just as our other zinc oxide sunscreens can discolor dark clothing, this is more likely to discolor light clothing.

Label & Ingredient Questions

-What are these claims on the sunscreen labels: 'Hypoallergenic', 'Pediatrician Tested', 'Non-Comedogenic'?

We had some of our sunscreens tested by independent laboratories to ensure that they are safe for babies, kids, and those with sensitive skin. Learn more about these tests and their results.

-Do Badger sunscreens contain PABA?

No. We only use ingredients that are gentle and non-irritating. We would not use an ingredient such as PABA in our natural and organic sunscreens.

-Do Badger sunscreens contain any oxybenzone, octisalate, octinoxate, avobenzone, or added Vitamin A?

No, Badger Sunscreens only use pharmaceutical-grade zinc oxide as the active ingredient and we do not add Vitamin A to our sunscreens.

-Do Badger sunscreens contain certified organic ingredients?

Yes, almost all of the ingredients in our sunscreens are USDA Certified Organic. The only exceptions are ingredients that are exempt from the National Organic Program (zinc oxide), and ingredients that are not currently available with an organic certification. You can see the total percentage of organic content on the "Ingredients" tab on each sunscreen product page. More about our natural & organic sunscreen claims.

-Why isn't the USDA Organic logo on your sunscreens?

The USDA standard states that a product must be made of 95-100% organic ingredients in order to bear the USDA Certified Organic seal. Since all of our sunscreens contain at least 10% of the mineral zinc oxide, the products cannot be certified organic by the National Organic Program. Even though we can't label it as organic, we still use USDA Certified Organic ingredients whenever possible (listed with an asterisk (*) in the ingredient panel), and we list the % organic ingredients on the front of the label, a method which is certified by QAI to the NSF/ANSI 305 Organic Standard (the most rigorous organic standard for personal care). More about our natural & organic sunscreen claims.

-What is the Tocopherol (vitamin E) derived from? Is it Non-GMO?

As of June 2012, all of Badger's sunscreens are manufactured using Tocopherol (vitamin E) that is derived solely from Sunflower Oil. Prior to this we used Tocopherol derived from mixed sources, including corn, soy, and wheat. Yes, our Vitamin E is non-GMO, as are all of our other ingredients.

How to tell which Vitamin E you have: Badger sunscreens with vitamin E derived solely from Sunflower Oil will state this clearly on the ingredient label Example: Tocopherol (Sunflower Vitamin E). Mixed-source Tocopherol appears as Tocopherol (Natural Vitamin E).

-What is the size of the zinc oxide particles in your sunscreen?

We hired an independent laboratory to conduct light scattering analysis on our sunscreens and they determined that our zinc oxide particles ranged from 120nm to 52µm (52,000nm). Note: we believe that the largest of these particles are probably agglomerates, or clumps of smaller particles. We also measured our particles via Scanning Electron Microscope imagery, Sedigraph, and surface area analysis (from the manufacturer). By all conventional definitions we can confidently claim that our zinc oxide is non-nano. More about our zinc oxide and the nanoparticle controversy.

-Why do Badger sunscreens have less zinc oxide than other brands?

We've developed advanced mixing methods to efficiently disperse our zinc oxide particles in our sunscreens. This minimizes particle agglomeration (clumping) resulting in a more even layer of zinc oxide on the skin and more efficient protection.

-Are Badger sunscreens gluten-free?

Badger does not use any ingredients that contain gluten in our sunscreens*. However, Badger sunscreens are filled in a facility that also processes wheat and gluten materials on the same machinery. This facility does careful cleanings between product transitions to greatly reduce the possibility of cross contamination, but we cannot guarantee those products gluten free.

*All sunscreens manufactured before June 2012 contain Tocopherol (vitamin E) partially derived from wheat germ oil. Sunscreens manufactured after June 2012 contain Vitamin E derived solely from Sunflower Seed Oil, and do not contain any gluten ingredients. Badger sunscreens with the vitamin E derived solely from Sunflower Oil will state this clearly on the ingredient label Example: Tocopherol (Sunflower Vitamin E). Mixed-source Tocopherol containing wheat germ oil appears as Tocopherol (Natural Vitamin E).

General Sunscreen Questions

-What are the differences between physical sunscreens, chemical sunscreens and mineral sunscreens?

Physical barrier sunscreens (like Badger's) form a film on top of the skin that reflects, absorbs, and scatters UV light using the minerals zinc oxide and/or Titanium Dioxide. We use only non-nano zinc oxide for our sunscreens because we feel it is the safest & most effective option - and it has been used on the skin for hundreds of years.

Unlike physical barrier sunscreens, chemical sunscreens are designed to soak into the skin, absorbing UV rays before they can do any damage. Most chemical ingredients protect against either UVA or UVB, but not for both, so many conventional sunscreens use several chemical active ingredients. Since these chemical sunscreens absorb into the skin they are more likely to cause irritation or allergies. Furthermore, they can get into your blood potentially causing unwanted health effects.

-What does SPF mean?

Sun Protection Factor, or SPF, is a measurement of how well a sunscreen will protect skin from UVB rays, the kind of radiation that causes sunburn and contributes to skin cancer. SPF does not indicate how well a product will protect you from UVA rays. Read all about SPF.

-Sunblock vs. sunscreen vs. sun screens. What's the difference?

Sunblock is an out of date term for sunscreen. The FDA no longer allows the use of the term 'sunblock' since no skin care products completely 'block' the sun. Sunscreens are skin products that either reflect or absorb UVB and/or UVA rays and are FDA registered drugs in the USA. Sun Screens are physical objects like a screen, an umbrella, or clothing.

Badger Sunscreen Products