What is Zinc Oxide? (And How to Use It)

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Zinc oxide is an ingredient found in many natural body care products, including sunscreen, diaper cream, anti-itch cream and more.

The active ingredient found in Calamine lotion is zinc oxide.

Zinc oxide is an inorganic compound. Its molecular formula is ZnO, which is one zinc atom and one oxygen atom held together by an ionic bond (Source, Source).

Made from zinc, zinc oxide is essentially zinc that has been oxidized.

Zinc Oxide is “a mild astringent and topical protectant with some antiseptic action.” (Source) You will find it in many “non-toxic” sunscreens and diaper rash creams. This is because it provides a protective layer to the skin which reflects and absorbs UVA and UVB rays from the sun. The protective layer also repels water and moisture, making it a great option for treating and preventing diaper rash.

I personally use zinc oxide to make diaper cream, sunscreen, and anti-itch cream. Many use it as an acne treatment, but I have not tried that myself yet.

Recipes Using Zinc Oxide

Here are three simple recipes for personal care products using zinc oxide:

DIY Diaper Rash Cream

Homemade Sunscreen (three recipes)

Homemade Anti-Itch Cream

Important note

When buying Zinc Oxide for use in homemade products, be sure to purchase non-nano zinc oxide.

“A nanoparticle is a particle smaller than 100 nanometers.” (Source)

This is so that the zinc oxide will sit on top of the skin and not be absorbed by the skin.

My Favorite Brand of Zinc Oxide

I use Zinc Oxide from Raise Them Well. This is my favorite because it is non-nano and is from a reputable, small family-owned business.

It is available from Amazon and also from their website: RaisethemWell.com

Win a Container of ZinC Oxide and Make Your Own Sunscreen, Diaper Cream, and Anti-Itch Cream.

Use the Rafflecopter below to enter to win a container of Zinc Oxide from Raise Them Well. You will be able to use it to make sunscreen, acne treatments, diaper cream, anti-itch cream, and more!

Open to US Residents only. Must be 18 years of age to enter.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

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  1. Hi Stacy,
    I found your blog through my chemistry class, believe it or not. Our 2nd class project is to make your hand lotion. I am going to tweak the fragrance a bit, because I have my own aromatherapy signature scents I have created over the years. I clicked over to the zinc oxide article because I am interested in making some diaper ointment for my nieces’ babies.