Expert warns against recreating TikTok influencer’s viral homemade sunscreen

Meera Jacka
TikTok influencer's boyfriend making sunscreen, with her showing the final result

A dermatologist is warning TikTok users to stay sun safe and avoid recreating one influencer’s viral homemade sunscreen.

Nara Smith, who goes by ‘naraazizasmith‘ on the social media platform, is facing backlash after sharing a recipe for making sunscreen “from scratch” with her 8.1 million followers.

Having spent “a lot of time outside by the pool”, Nara asked her husband, Lucky Blue Smith to “make” some sunscreen as the pair had run out – filming the process to teach viewers how to do the same.

While the TikTok garnered over 17.6 million views, those watching weren’t convinced the DIY sunscreen would protect them from any UV damage. And it turns out they were right, with experts warning against recreating the recipe.

“We all burn pretty easily, so we went with something with a little bit more SPF,” Nara said in a soothing voiceover. Meanwhile, Lucky got to work mixing together coconut oil, beeswax, shea butter, cocoa butter, jojoba oil, and zinc oxide powder.

Commenters quickly labeled the recipe as “crazy”, jokingly asking Nara to “make Ozempic from scratch” next. But while a majority of viewers weren’t convinced by the “insane” idea of making your own sunscreen, dermatologists are worried some might attempt to copy Nara.

Dermatologist Dr. Aamna Adel, who goes by ‘aamnaadel‘ on TikTok, stitched the video with a warning to viewers, admitting she was shocked to see Nara’s post promoting homemade sunscreen.

“Every sunscreen on the market undergoes rigorous testing, and that’s to make sure that it’s actually protecting you from UV and most importantly, it’s stopping you from burning,” Dr. Adel explained.

“If you’re making a DIY sunscreen at home, you literally have no idea how much protection it’s giving you,” she continued, explaining sunscreens from scratch could have an SPF rating of anywhere between 2% to 10%.

As it was “anyone’s guess” as to the amount of protection DIY sunscreens offered, Dr. Adel advised Nara to keep to homemade bubble tea recipes instead.

This isn’t the first time experts have had to jump in to persuade TikTok users to stay sun safe, previously warning against a “dangerous” anti-sunscreen trend that saw people ditching SPF entirely.