Sunscreens, The Environment
And The Suntribe Solution
When we are out in nature enjoying the sun the last thing we want is that the products we use to protect ourselves destroy the very environment we have come to enjoy. Unfortunately most conventional sunscreens do just that.
The chemicals found in conventional sunscreens affect both us humans and the ecosystem in negative ways. In humans, effects range from skin irritations and allergies to hormonal distrubances and even skin cancer.
When it comes to the environment, most of the damage is done to the oceans. The biggest impact is on marine life such as corals, algae, fish and sea mammals like turtles. One of the main culprits is a chemical compound called Oxybenzone, which unfortunately is the most common chemical UV filter in sunscreen products today. Oxybenzone is highly toxic to any living organisms that can be found in nature, so much so that it has already been completely banned by the governments of Hawaii and Palau.
GREEN WASHING IN THE SUNSCREEN INDUSTRY
After the scientific findings regarding the impact of chemical UV-filters on marine life have started to spread, the big players in the sunscreen industry have started to react.
Nowadays it has become increasingly common to see labels such as “Reef Safe” on sunscreens that still harm our oceans. Sadly, most manufacturers simply replace Oxybenzone and Octinoxate with UV-filters that are less known to the public but just as harmful, such as Homosalate and Octocrylene.
The big companies are thus trying to portray themselves as environmentally friendly when in fact no real change has been done.
An example of greenwashing. This sunscreen still contains Homosalate and Octocrylene which are also deemed to be damaging coral reefs, just like the more well-known chemical UV-filters Octinoxate and Oxybenzone.
These alarming facts have led us to believe that we have to do better. And we can.
The Suntribe Solution
At Suntribe we believe it is a no-brainer that products should have a a minimal negative impact on both the environment and the humans that use them. Therefore, we only use ingredients scientifically proven to be safe, and strive to minimize the ecological footprint of our products. For all our sunscreens we only use non-nano Zinc Oxide as our UV-filter, which is scientifically verified to be safe for marine life. Also, it provides unparallelled broad protection against both UVA and UVB rays.
Turtle at Ko Lipe in Thailand
We believe that transparency creates trust, and we want to make it easy for you to see the steps we take to create our products. Here we would like to walk you through our production chain so that you can feel as confident as us about the quality and environmental friendliness of our natural cosmetics.
Production & Ingredients
All our sunscreen and cosmetics are handmade with the utmost care to quality and detail. We take pride in only using the highest quality, certified organic ingredients. Our products are made in small batches. We combine the age old arts of creating wax based formulation with modern innovations like homogenizers. This way we can create natural formulas based on traditional knowledge with modern production methods, efficient and effective with scientific precision.
Let’s have a look at the Suntribe product development process at our GMP and COSMOS ORGANIC certified European based production facilities:
Labels & Printed Materials
We use labels printed on 100% recycled paper and use ink of the highest ecological grade.
After long research (and trying out many suppliers) we have now found a supplier that is both close to our manufacturing site and offers closed-loop label production. Our long-term goal is to work on every aspect of our business, as we have done with our labels, to reduce the environmental impact at every step to a minimum. Here’s a short video bringing you closer to Suntribe’s production facilities in the EU.
QUALITY CONTROL & CERTIFICATIONS
At Suntribe we know the importance of quality control and guarantees. Natural ingredients, wonderful as they are, are dynamic. They change from year to year and season to season. So it’s important to constantly keep a waking eye on the formulas.
We quality control all the batches that we produce. We keep several samples of each batch and conduct stability testing over the course of the products shelf-life. Among other things we heat and freeze the product to test it’s stability in extreme temperatures.
We have certified all our sunscreens according to the ISO-standards set by the European Union. These tests involve sending sunscreens to independent laboratories, where they are tested both on people and with technical methods. Nothing speaks the truth like science.
• All Suntribe products marked with SPF have conducted an ISO 24444 test – the official standard for Sun Protection Factor (SPF/UVB).
• All Suntribe products marked with the UVA symbol has conducted an ISO 24443 test – the official standard for UVA / Critical Wave Length testing.
New Generation Natural Cosmetics Certification
The product display stands you see when you buy a Suntribe product in any of the more than 150 shops we have partnered with around the world are handcrafted using sustainably sourced Swedish oak.
The local craftsman Christian that you see below produces our sales displays in the deep forests of Skåne, Sweden.
Feeling inspired? Visit the shop to see what we have on offer. All of it is safe both for you and nature – just as it should be.
Do you want to know more about our mission in general and sunscreens in particular?