It’s American Independence Day, and for those of you celebrating you know what that means: whether it’s a pool party or a baseball game, chances are you’ll be spending the day outdoors!

But it’s July. Keep in mind, doctors recommend throughout the year that we try to avoid prolonged exposure to the sun between 10am and 2pm in order to lower the risk of skin cancer. That’s prime picnic time, so if you’re going to be outside anyway then make sure you do so safely! Try to cover your arms and legs (loose cotton won’t feel as hot as tight, thick fabrics) and wear a hat and sunglasses. And don’t forget the magic ingredient to a safe and fun July 4th: sunscreen.

Check out Wellness Mama’s recipe for an all-natural, homemade sunscreen:

How to Make Natural Homemade Sunscreen

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup almond or olive oil (can infuse with herbs first if desired)

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (natural SPF 4)

  • 1/4 cup beeswax

  • 2 Tablespoons Zinc Oxide (This is a non-nano version that won’t be absorbed into the skin. Be careful not to inhale the powder). This makes a natural SPF of 20+ or more can be added.)

  • Optional: up to 1 teaspoon Red Raspberry Seed Oil

  • Optional: up to 1 teaspoon Carrot Seed Oil

  • Optional: up to 1 teaspoon Vitamin E oil

  • Optional: 2 tablespoons Shea Butter (natural SPF 4-5)

  • Optional: Essential Oils, Vanilla Extract or other natural extracts to suit your preference

Directions:

  1. Combine ingredients except zinc oxide in a pint sized or larger glass jar. I have a mason jar that I keep just for making lotions and lotion bars, or you can even reuse a glass jar from pickles, olives, or other foods.

  2. Fill a medium saucepan with a couple inches of water and place over medium heat.

  3. Put a lid on the jar loosely and place in the pan with the water.

  4. As the water heats, the ingredients in the jar will start to melt. Shake or stir occasionally to incorporate. When all ingredients are completely melted, add the zinc oxide, stir in well and pour into whatever jar or tin you will use for storage. Small mason jars (pint size) are great for this. It will not pump well in a lotion pump!

  5. Stir a few times as it cools to make sure zinc oxide is incorporated.

  6. Use as you would regular sunscreen. Best if used within six months.

To read Wellness Mama’s thoughts on natural vs. commercial sunscreen, and to read a bonus, faster recipe for natural sunscreen, be sure to check out the full post here.

Wishing you a happy, family-filled, and safe Fourth of July!