All sunscreens are required by the FDA to pass certain tests. As our customers’ safety is our top priority, we’re happy to comply! You can see our test results by clicking the links above and learn a little more below about how the tests are performed and what they measure.

There are two main types of UV rays: UVA rays (those responsible for aging and other damage) and UVB rays (those responsible for burning). Think of the “A” in UVA as standing for aging, and the “B” in UVB as standing for burning.

UVA Tests (Aging Rays)

Broad spectrum SPF test Goddess GardenUVA rays penetrate further into the skin and can contribute to premature signs of aging. Because the damage isn’t immediately visible, the FDA uses a test called the Critical Wavelength Method to ensure sunscreens are protecting against these rays. It’s often referred to as a UVA test, but it really evaluates whether or not a product protects across the spectrum, or is “broad spectrum.”

This test is not done on people, but is instead done in vitro. An even layer of sunscreen is applied to a roughened PMMA (acrylic) plate and exposed to UV light. This test measures the percent of the total spectrum a product protects from by determining how much of the UVA/UVB light gets through. According to the FDA, sunscreens can be classified as “broad spectrum” only when their critical wavelength is equal to or longer than 370 nm.


UVB Tests (Burning Rays)

We all likely know about UVB rays. They cause the burns and are the main reason people use sunscreen. The FDA’s Sun Protection Factor (SPF) test is much easier than the broad spectrum test, since the results of UVB exposure are immediately visible to the eye. To measure water resistance at the same time as SPF, this test has people sit in a hot tub for a length of time after applying sunscreen. Once they get out, they’re exposed to UV light. After time, redness is measured and compared. Because people react differently to sun exposure, the test is designed to be individual as well. The SPF rating relates to the amount of time it would take you to sunburn if you were not wearing sunscreen, as opposed to the time it would take with sunscreen on. It communicates the


Safe, Effective and Good for People and the Planet!

Chemical sunscreens have been linked to the destruction of coral reefs, a very important ecosystem that supports marine life, protects against tsunamis and benefits our food systems and economies. [i] [ii] Because of the harm they can cause to corals, Hawaii passed legislation to ban certain sunscreen chemicals in 2018. Similar bans have passed in Key West, Bonaire and the Republic of Palau since then. They’ve also been proposed at the state level in Florida, and California is rumored to be next.

At the same time, common chemical sunscreens like oxybenzone and octinoxate have attracted scrutiny from studies linking them to hormone disruption and even birth defects. [iii][iv] They’ve even drawn attention from the FDA, who has proposed more research to ensure they are safe and effective. [v] Their proposal announced zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, the minerals used in Goddess Garden sunscreens to protect against UV rays, are considered generally recognized as safe and effective for use in sunscreen. These minerals are the only two sunscreen actives that were recognized as such.

Given all this information, choosing mineral sunscreen is an easy choice! It’s safe and effective on people, just like it is for our planet! It’s the best of both worlds—without any drawbacks!

[i] Downs, C. al Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 70, 265–288 (2016).
[ii] Danovaro, al Health Perspect. 116, 441–447 (2008).
[iii] DiNardo, Joseph C. and Craig A. Downs. Clinical Dermatology Research Journal. 19 Mar 2019.
[iv] DiNardo, Joseph C. and Craig A. Downs. Reproductive Toxicology. 1 Mar 2019.
[v] “FDA advances new proposed regulation to make sure that sunscreens are safe and effective.” 21 Feb 2019.