Malu Protecting Day Cream....back with a few important changes!

Summer is upon us and the Honua team is thrilled to unveil a massive surprise.  We've made a few beautiful improvements to everyone's favorite Malu Protecting Day Cream is soon to be available in a 2oz size.   

Introduced in summer of 2018, Malu 1.0 quickly became everyone's favorite day cream with SPF30, no white cast and a moisturizer that!  Malu is also the first product Honua ever made with a lab because of the lengthy and complicated process of creating a product regulated by the FDA (and sun protection products are).   We take a lot of pride in our ingredients and sourcing and it was a bit harder for us to be so hands-on with Malu 1.0.  However, our founder, Kapua Browning, is very persistent when it comes to ingredients and she started digging and digging and determined a few small tweaks that we could make.

The first change is adjusting Malu to a completely palm-free formula.  For this, let's start from the beginning.  What is the problem with palm oil, for those of us that don't follow this issue with a close eye?  Palm oil is versatile, cheap and widely available.  However, palm oil has caused deforestation and community conflict in the regions where it is cultivated.  As a result, it has become a highly controversial ingredient in food, cleaning products, cosmetics and more.  Approximately 85% of palm oil is currently produced in Malaysia and Indonesia, where companies (historically) freely cleared rainforests to grow their plantations.  In Indonesia specifically, much of the land is waterlogged and swampy and the easiest way to make this land farmable is to burn it so many regions of Indonesia are losing their natural habitats while choking on burning fumes each year.  On top of these challenges, palm oil cultivation faces social challenges of worker exploitation, labor abuse and conflict between indigenous communities and the companies cultivating the land.  While responsible sourcing does exist for palm oil, we decided to do away with it altogether and just use sources we know and trust more completely. So our new Malu (aka. Malu 2.0) is completely palm free and we could not be happier about it. 

The second change is also an ingredient change but is an efficiency change.  Our Malu 1.0 uses only zinc oxide for sun protection and it uses a high degree of it - 18.9%.  Zinc oxide comes in a white, chalky form and it physically blocks the suns rays (rather than using chemicals to sink into your skin to absorb rays - more on why this matters in next week's blog post).  This white, chalky zinc oxide causes formulas to be really thick and our formula (while not very thick) was often stuck in the tube, requiring some tricky acrobatics with toothpicks or similar instruments to get the remaining Malu out.  This was largely due to the density of the cream trying to get through the tubes.  Kapua and our chemist determined that with a few formula changes, we could lower the amount of zinc oxide, add in a few other beautiful ingredients AND keep the SPF30.  So we decided to go for it.  The result?  A stunning, palm-free moisturizer and sunscreen that is reef/ocean safe.  On top of this achievement, Malu 2.0 is just as beautiful of a day cream, yet it flows a little better now.  It is time for Malu lovers everywhere to rejoice!

The third change is a huge deal for many of you because we know so many of you buy the 1oz over and over and over and have been desperately asking for a 2oz version.  Well, the 2oz is almost here so you can save some $$ and we can produce one less bottle at the same time.  We can't wait to share it with you.  2oz should launch in early/mid July.

Note: All sales of Malu will continue to support Sustainable Coastlines - Hawai'i. We are also excited to offer a limited edition (later this year) of Malu that supports Breast Cancer Prevention Partners (BCPP).   This picture highlights the special edition bottle you'll see.  Otherwise, your Malu will be pretty identical to the existing version.

Lots of Aloha to you ~ Team Honua


Way too much zinc oxide. A sunscreen formulated with zinc oxide only requires a concentration of 5%, so this sunscreen is overkill and leads to a white caste. Good product, but far from great!

Tricia June 23, 2023

Hi, wanting to try. But wondering if you use any nano sized particles in this product? Thanks.

Cindy June 23, 2023

Hi, I understand why you made the changes you did but I’m very disappointed that you lowered the zinc oxide. It was the perfect cream and your reason for lowering the percentage doesn’t justify why it had to be lowered. Yes many say 12 % is still an spf 30 but I don’t go by spf. Percentage of zinc is what matters to me and I like to have at least 18% zinc in my product. Again this is just my preference and in no way means that it’s a bad product now. But either way I won’t be purchasing this sun cream again. Thanks for your time.

Nadine June 23, 2023

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