Sustainable Sun protection and Hair Care
Obviously, surf travel means long amounts of time in the sun, water and the elements. It also means heavy luggage to transport and carry to remote areas of the world. Sometimes so remote that, electricity, shopping and maybe even water supply has extreme limitations. An extra bag means extra costs, extra weight, and extra space that may or may not be available. I have been nomadic for years, moved provinces, countries and apartments more than my fingers and toes can count. I have used the cheap stuff, the bulky stuff, and the local stuff. As an avid traveller and conscious shopper I put together some of my favourites that are eco-friendly, small and travel friendly but also high quality products. There are tons more on the market now which is awesome and though I haven’t tried them all. I put together some goodies to grab from some smaller independent companies on the rise.
Eco-friendly and Surf focused Sun Protection
You can be the most ripped surfer with a beautiful tan but skin cancer doesn’t give a shit about your washboard abs or toned ass. Staying heathly is more than smoothie bowls and lemon water. Protecting your skin not only prevents signs of aging (those crease lines from squinting in the sun show pretty fast after a few weeks of daily surfing) but also protects against skin cancer which can be life threatening if ignored. Not to mentioned extends your surf session and avoids sun stroke. I have sensitive and acne prone skin so sunscreen is a bit of a nightmare for me. But I found a few that work well, smell great and light to bring around.
Favourite Body Sun Protection : Raw Elements
With a fresh scent of Eucalyptus and a thick moisturizing cream, Raw Elements makes my skin feels healthy, rejuvenated and well protected. I love their eco-friendly tin that fits conveniently in my surf essential bag. Since the paste like cream is so condensed, a little goes a long way and its long lasting. With the essential oils in it, there is a natural water repellent aspect to it. All natural makes is good for the skin but also more eco-friendly entering the water. Like any sun protection you should apply before and wait it to absorb into your skin before entering the water. Helps you and the ocean. Save some money while you save the reef.
Favourite Face Sun Protection : for a Surf & Beach Babe
As mentioned, skin issues have plagued me for my life. Acne prone, sensitive and temperamental skin has given me a long product testing for sunscreen and face creams. I have two that have become my favourite for daily use and surfing. One has been in my beauty bag for years – city life, travel, beach or whatever. A lightweight and oil free that easy alone or under makeup.
Everyday Lightweight Favourite : La Roche-Posay
After years of searching, La Roche-Posay delivered what I needed and had been looking for. Something lightweight, barely there and sensitive skin friendly sunscreen. No longer feeling greasy, post beach breakouts of burnt skin in refusal to reapply all day. I actually feel refreshed every time I apply and always have this in my purse – any season. Surf, beach, city or the winter slopes. Obviously they don’t need the marketing but honestly as I always and still struggle with cystic acne and breakouts. I highly recommend to add to your beauty bag if you have this issue. Best skincare investment for me. I make it fit into my budget. I wish it was more eco-friendly and plastic free but I make an exception with this one due to my skin issues and a small bottle can last me more than a year depending on usage.
Favourite Surf Zinc: Manda Naturals
I found this brand while on my travels. I was on a Women’s Surf Retreat as an invited Photographer in Sayulita, Mexico. I was renting a fish surfboard in Lunazul Surf School and Rentals and noticed they had some cool eco friendly zinc on the shelf. I had ran out of mine and didn’t get a chance to buy any before traveling. I loved the packaging, cute eco-friendly bamboo tin with a convenient mirror inside the lid. I could apply right on the beach without some weird tanlines or missing a spot. I also like that it was made in California – obviously I would have liked to get locally made but California regulations and high standards gave me faith in the product. The color was also friendly to most skin colors – not shocking white or neon stains afterwards. Manda is an organic skin care company with a mission “committed to making the most protective, longest lasting and responsibly made sun protection in the world.”
Surf Soap: Surf & Ocean Friendly Hair & Skin Care
Rehab Balm and All in One: Hair and body care in 2 small tins.
My love for the Surf Soap and the company mission is no secret as I wrote my praise in the brand feature post here. Made for surfers by surfers, Founder and owner Kayla Pearson is passionate about her mission to be sustainable and create products that are ocean and eco-friendly but also of the best quality. Although I have yet to try all of the products yet, I find it hard to choose my favourites. Their Rehab balm is not only rehydrating to my hair after a day in the sun and saltwater but also smells like the best of the beach to carry through my day. A little also goes a long way and I sometimes love to lather it on for a hair masque. The All in One is really an all around go to for traveling. It works as a shampoo, body wash and exfoliant. Made with fresh and high quality locally sourced ingredients, I feel like I flew to Hawaii in every post surf shower. With easy travel and plastic free packaging I love the fact I can get refills with biodegradable cardboard boxes and minimal trash. The price point is so reasonable when I know how long all the products last and I can travel carry on for a week with the ultra travel size of the products.
Favourite Skin Repair – Better Butter
Surf Soap wins in the skin repair department as well. Designed for skin chafing to prevent surf rash that can be applied pre-surf as a preventative or post surf as a relief. I honestly use it as a moisturizer. Since I am rarely surfing warm waters I love it for dry skin and those small spots of winter eczema I can get. Lip balm that I lick my lips (probably not healthy to eat but safe) My favourite ‘flavour’ being pineapple with its fruity fresh scent. I love the mango and coconut for my heels and elbows. I have used tons of different tin skin savers and lip balms over the years (thank you Canadian winters) but these tins have lasted me over 2 years with almost daily use. I haven’t been able to buy more yet or try their new skin care line of creams. I suggest grabbing a 3 pack to save on shipping and decide your favourite or give as gifts.
Of course, there are a few other skin and hair care I use on my daily routine, especially not traveling or surfing. Sometimes I have to give in to the chemical and plastic items when needed as my unstable lifestyle surprises me as I age but these are my all time favourites you can find in my surf and travel bag.
Check more of the products these awesome companies have to offer:
Manda (California Based) : mandanaturals.com
Surf Soap (Hawaii Based): surfsoap.com
Raw Elements (California Based): rawelementsusa.com