Why is Sunology so White? And Other Mineral Sunscreen Concerns, Answered

If you’re newly making the switch to mineral sunscreen, you’ll want to prepare yourself for the experience as you start using a formula like Sunology for the first time. Not only will you want to know what to expect, you’ll also benefit from knowing why using mineral sunscreen is different than the chemical formulations you may have been using up until now. In order to cover what we hope are all of the mineral sunscreen bases, we’ve gathered feedback from some recent converts, and have attempted to answer a few of their most frequently voiced concerns.

The Formula is White—It Turns Purple and/or Doesn’t Rub In

Yes, Sunology is white. Very white. But there’s a reason for that—the minerals that make up Sunology’s active ingredient list are also white. Since Sunology is not water-based (more about this below), it tends to require a bit more effort to rub in completely and often may leave a white cast on the skin, despite a hard-fought attempt at making it disappear or consciously leaving plenty of time for it to “soak in.” We do understand that looking white (or sometimes purple, if your skin tone is darker), may not be the most fashionable way to wear sunscreen, but we value function over fashion. Although mineral sunscreen may seem harder to wear, it is the gentlest and most effective option you’ll find on the market, so in our minds, it’s totally worth the paling side effects. Plus it's highly concentrated, so a little goes a long way. There's typically no need for the oft-recommended "shot glass" sized dose per application.

A nickel-sized amount (left) is typically a good amount to start with for the arms, and a dime-sized (right) for the face. Build from there as needed to ensure all exposed skin is covered.


The dollop on the left represents a nickel-sized amount of Sunology. On the right, a dime-sized amount. Start small and build to achieve full, invisible sun protection.


The left side of the arm looks white as a bit more Sunology was applied here than is perfectly needed. We encourage you to err on the side of wearing more sunscreen, but Sunology will be less visible with a lighter application.


Despite the simple explanation for it, the white appearance of Sunology on the skin is definitely something we haven’t stopped working through. Our research and development efforts are always on, so you can expect improvements to continue to be made.

“It’s Thick Like Toothpaste”

As much as we don’t love that this particular comparison was made negatively, it’s really not too far off. Sunology is thicker than most, if not all, chemical sunscreens. Why? Well, it’s made with minerals and essential oils as opposed to water and UV-absorbing chemicals. While the texture of our mineral-based formula is something we are always looking to improve upon, our number one priority is to keep the skin, your skin, protected at the surface. The thicker formula provides SPF 50 physical sun protection, which ensures the UV rays never have a chance to reach the skin cells.

Sunology Feels Heavy

The good news: it’s highly water-resistant.

The bad news: it may feel a little greasy compared to runny, water-based sunscreens, even after you’ve done some rubbing.

It might take some getting used to, but the “dewey” quality is actually a product of the nourishing essential oil complex we mix into all of our sunscreen creams, and is also due to the fact that we don't add chemical active ingredients to encourage absorption. The oil complex provides essential vitamins and antioxidants to moisturize, nourish, and combat free-radicals, enhancing the protective nature of the SPF 50 formula. Plus, many have reported a positive experience with the dewiness of Sunology, loving the way the skin feels during and after use.

A Few Tricks of the Trade:

  1. Make sure you aren’t going overboard with your Sunology application. The recommended amount for most (chemical) sunscreens is very different from the amount of Sunology needed to achieve full protection. Start small and build—use enough to fully cover all exposed skin, but keep in mind that a little goes a long way.
  2. Technique may help. Rubbing in small circular motions, in both directions, has worked for some who struggle with achieving an invisible application.
  3. Keep an open mind. New products can be intimidating or difficult to adjust to, but something like paraben-free, oxybenzone-free, cruelty-free, broad-spectrum, mineral sunscreen can be totally worth a few imperfect applications when it means keeping your skin safe from sun damage without known chemical toxins. Many Sunology users report the initial “heavy” feeling going away after the initial application, and a huge number of dedicated users said they not only love how it feels on their skin, they have noticed softer, healthier looking skin with regular use.
  4. With its water-resistant, oil-infused qualities, Sunology may seem hard to remove from the skin. However, with a foaming cleanser and a loofah, or other gentle exfoliator, the sunscreen will easily and completely leave the skin.
  5. Sunology works wonders as a makeup base. Cleanse your skin, spread a thin layer of Sunology over the face, and apply your makeup as usual. Not only will you be moisturized and SPF protected, your makeup might ease any lasting dewiness.

It's one thing for product information to come from us, bit it's quite another to receive reassurance from Sunology users who have documented their real experiences. So we'll leave you with a few we hope will be helpful as you consider the switch to mineral sunscreen.

"I have so much peace of mind knowing this not only works but has good ingredients. It took time for me to get used to the thickness and how to apply properly (without being left with a pasty face!). Now I use a little bronzer after the application is rubbed in. I love this."

-sun_worshipper via Sunology.com

"I have used Sunology products for years and absolutely love the products. I use it daily as my base before applying my foundation. Love how it feels on my skin--it has a smooth, silky feel and provides all day protection. I have compared it against other products and they don't seem to give me the long lasting level of protection...Highly recommend these products!"

-Anonymous via Amazon

"I bought this prior to a trip to Hawaii where I knew we would be near or on the beach a fair amount. This product worked better than any other sunscreen I have ever used. We were in the ocean a lot and it worked great on and out of the water. Love this stuff and will continue to use, buy it and recommend it.Knowing that it is safe for our oceans and reefs as well as being cruelty free and safe for our bodies were all HUGE points when I purchased it as I only buy cruelty free eco friendly and body friendly products."

-Lynn via Sunology.com

"I have tried a number of sunscreens without harmful chemicals, and Sunology is by far the best. I was hesitant to purchase this product due to the 2oz. sized bottle, but it applies smoothly and evenly, so you only need a little to cover your entire body. While at the beach, I used a sunscreen marketed for the beach on myself and my husband, and I used Sunology for my 6 year old. She was the only one that didn't get burnt. After searching for years for a natural sunscreen that isn't super thick, I finally found a winner."

-Andi via Sunology.com

"I'm an adult who loves this product. I've tried other recommended sunscreens but they have either not gone smoothly over my moisturizer, or have irritated my eyes. Sunology for Kids has not made my eyes water. I will say I used too much the first day and I looked a bit pasty! Yesterday, I put it on in little dabs over my moisturizer, then gently blended it over my face. Voila! No white face look. Thanks for a non-irritating product!"

-Barbara via Amazon

If you still have questions or concerns about how your experience with Sunology has gone (or will go, if you're still considering), post in the comments below or get in touch via email at any time.

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