What Makes it Green?
So this is going to be a long answer...
Active ingredients in sunscreens come in two forms, mineral and chemical filters. Each uses a different mechanism for protecting skin and maintaining stability in sunlight. The most common sunscreens on the market contain chemical filters. These products typically include a combination of two to six of the following active ingredients: oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate, octocrylene, homosalate and octinoxate. Mineral sunscreens use zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide. A handful of products combine zinc oxide with chemical filters.
Laboratory studies indicate that some chemical UV filters may mimic hormones, and physicians report sunscreen-related skin allergies, which raises important questions about unintended human health consequences from frequent sunscreen application.
EWG has reviewed the existing data about human exposure and toxicity for the nine most commonly used sunscreen chemicals. The most worrisome is oxybenzone, which was added to nearly 65 percent of the non-mineral sunscreens, and it is known that oxybenzone can cause allergic skin reactions (Rodriguez 2006).
Black Girl Sunscreen is formulated with chemical filters, but it is not formulated with oxybenzone, the most damaging chemical filter. It is also formulated without parabens, phthalates, triclosan, or any of the twenty other toxic ingredients banned on BLK & GRN's Toxic Twenty List