Homemade Sun Lotion Recipe

This homemade sun lotion recipe is super easy to make, effective, and good for your skin!

DIY Sun Lotion


If you’re like me, you have no interest whatsoever in wearing commercial, chemical sunscreen. It’s just not worth the risk of possible hormone disruption, allergies, or cancer. 

But sunburn is no fun either. Last summer on a hot day, I decided to go out blackberry picking wearing a tank top to keep cool. It was really thoughtless. Me, Whiter than sour cream, going out into the sun with bare shoulders. I came in looking like a lobster, and now I make sure to wear sleeves and a hat when I go picking.

That works for me, but my kids are just as white as I am, and burn just as easily. Problem is, they don’t keep hats on very well, and at least one of them has a tendency to come in with fewer clothes than he went out in (what’s up with that?).

So this year, I decided to try making my own homemade natural sunscreen. 

It’s amazing what you can do with a few oils and minerals. Really. 

This is basically a homemade lotion, with the addition of zinc oxide which you can purchase from amazon.com. The zinc oxide protects the skin against the sun, and while the spf numbers are a little lower, it turns out, spf 30 isn’t twice as effective as spf 15. Spf 15 protects agains 93 percent of UV rays, while 30 protects against 97%. 


Homemade mineral sun lotions tend to be about 20spf, which works very well for me. 

If you’re skeptical of homemade sun lotion, try making a really tiny batches using teaspoons where the recipe says tablespoons. Or if you love it, use cups (or half cups) instead of tablespoons!

Homemade Sun Lotion Recipe

  • 2 Tablespoons shea butter
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 Tablespoon zinc oxide
  • 4 drops tea tree oil

Melt the shea butter and coconut oil over gentle heat. Remove from heat, and stir in the zinc oxide and tea tree oil.

Pour into a container and let cool completely before using. 

To use: apply liberally to exposed skin. Rub in well.

I find that it smears on much like commercial sunscreen, but once you’ve rubbed it in, you can barely tell that it’s there.

There's an Oil For That


As someone with a strong interest in natural remedies and health solutions, you can bet that essential oils have peaked my interest. Time and time again, I’ve been impressed with the power these plant extracts have shown. 

It’s not really that surprising when you think about it, is it? 

All of us know the medicinal qualities of herbs. The problem is, you have to use so much of them to see the effects. Since essential oils are highly concentrated plant (herbal) material, it’s no wonder we see such effectiveness in just one drop. 

That’s why, for me, these seemingly expensive bottles of oil have become my go-to frugal solution for nearly everything. The saying “there’s an oil for that” really is true! 

Sadly, though almost every bottle of essential oil on the market claims to be “Pure Essential Oil”, that claim can legally be made if there is as little as just 5% of the actual essential oil from the plant in the bottle. There is also no regulation for how an essential oil is to be extracted. Companies are free to use high-heat, high-pressure, and chemical-solvents to extract more from the plants, and still slap whatever label they want to on the oil. In fact, the majority of essential oil companies buy their oils from an oil broker. The company isn’t actually involved in the process of cultivating the plants or extracting the oils at all.

Which leads us to…

Why I chose Young Living

Young Living is the only company I know of that has their own farms, can absolutely guarantee that no pesticides or herbicides were used in the growing of any of their oils (they use essential oils for pest control and they do all of the weeding by hand), has their own testing equipment (they do both in-house and 3rd party testing), only uses the first distillation of oils instead of adding chemicals to get more out of the plant, and basically answered all 8 questions in a way that I feel comfortable with.

Young Living is also the only company that is directly in charge of essential oil farming operations. Every other company goes through some kind of an “oil broker” to buy their oils. They have to trust the oil broker that the farmers that he/she buys the oils from can be trusted to do what they are saying they are doing. With Young Living, you just have to trust one company instead of several.

I also loved that I could just sign up and get the member discount (24%!) and not have to actually sell anything to anyone.  All I had to do to keep getting my discount was to buy $50 worth of products per year, which should be a problem with the rate I make home remedies. :)

How to Buy Young Living Oils

There are a few different options. You’ll likely want to choose the wholesale member option when you sign up so that you’ll get the 24% discount (if you just choose “Customer” then the prices are retail prices). Once you fill out your information you will need to pick an enrollment kit. 

Right now, if you sign up with a premium starter kit through me, I will send you a FREE essential oils education package including the Essential Oil Pocket Reference, starter guide, and the three laminated reference sheets show in the picture below. I love my reference guide, and I’m know that you will too!



I would strongly recommend starting with the Premium Starter Kit.  It’s BY FAR the best value, as it includes 11 oils to try out (lavender, peppermint, lemon, Panaway, Purification, Thieves, frankincense, DiGize, R.C., and copaiba.  It also comes with a really nice home diffuser that is normally priced at $98 just by itself, and the total retail value of the kit is over $250!



Here’s how to sign up:

  1. Head over to the Young Living page here and fill out your information. It only takes a second, I promise!
  2.  BE SURE the “Wholesale Member” option is checked so that you don’t end up paying retail prices.
  3. BE SURE the “sponsor ID” and “enroller id” say 2652017 (those numbers should automatically populate if you click through the link above.)
  4. If you do not feel comfortable putting in your social security number (this is only for tax purposes if you decide to turn this into a business) then you can get an EIN from the IRS in just a few seconds hereand use that number instead (the IRS just needs to be able to connect some number with you for tax purposes).   They need a Social Security Number or an EIN because if you make $600 or more per year selling Young Living products, you will receive a 1099 form in the mail (which is required by law). Young Living will never share this info with anyone.
  5. Select which starter kit you want to get. My recommendation would be the Premium Starter Kit Those are the oils that I use almost every single day! You can get the kit that’s $160, or you can get a kit with an even nicer essential oil diffuser!
  6. I’d recommend skipping the Step 3 (Optional) part of the sign-up process. I’ll send over an email with more details on that part of things after you sign up (if you’re going to be purchasing products monthly then it’s a great program that will give you credit back with each order and save you on shipping costs).
  7. Go through the checkout process.  Young Living accepts most major credit cards, including Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express.
  8.  BONUS STEP–Completely Optional!  If you would like to earn 2 bonus oils this month, then get your order total up to 190 PV (different products have different point values).  You could get the Start Living With Everyday Oils kit and automatically have 100 point value… then you’ll just need 90 more points to get the bonus oils.  For example, you could grab an extra bottle of Thieves Oil at 33.75 points, 15 ml bottle of Lavender at 23.5 points, 15 ml bottle of Lime at 11 points, and the 14.4 ounces of Thieves Household Cleaner at 22 points (just pour one capful of the concentrated Thieves cleaning solution into a spray bottle and it lasts for a really long time!) All of those items will bring your total points up to $190.25 which will qualify you to get the two BONUS oils!  (This step is completely optional!)


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  1. I really wish I had remembered to look this up before going to the beach! I already had everything but the shea butter too.

    • Well, for future reference, it would probably be fine without the shea butter. Just use extra coconut oil instead. :)

  2. Melanie says:

    i am allergic to Tea Tree Oil! What is the sun screening properties of adding this oil? Will it be as effective without it? Or is there another oil that can be used instead…..

    • Hi Melanie! The zinc oxide is the real sunscreening power house, so you can easily drop the tea tree oil, or better yet, replace it with carrot seed oil. :)

  3. Ruth E Duckless says:

    Some kids just can’t seem to keep their clothes on – especially for us that live with Nature. I had joined Young Living Essential Oils but had to cancel as I was required to buy a costly amount each month. Have they changed the requirements?

    • You only have to buy $50 per year to retain membership – and even then, if you’re membership lapses, you just have to buy $50 worth to reactivate it.

      It’s only on Essential Rewards that you have to buy at least $50 worth per month – and that’s completely optional.


  1. […] try (really, really try) to remember to slather them with homemade sunscreen before they go out, but sometimes the ol’ mom brain takes over, and I […]

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