Heading to nearby Newport Beach to catch some waves this summer? If so, be sure to take along some sunscreen to protect your skin from damaging UV rays. But don’t take just any sunscreen with you—make sure it’s a reef-safe sunscreen!
There’s plenty of evidence that the chemicals in many sunscreens damage our oceans, coral reefs, and wildlife. By using a reef-safe sunscreen product, you’re doing your part to protect the ecosystem. In addition, they’re safer options for your body as well! Here’s how to find an eco-friendly sunscreen to promote health all-around:
1. Examine the Ingredients List
When you are searching for a reef-friendly sunscreen, look out for chemicals such as oxybenzone and Octinoxate, which have been shown to damage coral reefs and disrupt the human body. Here’s a list of additional ingredients to avoid. Instead, look for reef-friendly sunscreens, which are composed of mineral-based ingredients, such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. Unlike chemical sunscreens that absorb UV rays, the particles of mineral-based sunscreens sit on top of the skin to block the sun. They are less harmful to our reefs and wildlife—and less harmful to you!
2. Don’t Make Assumptions
Just because a sunscreen says “natural” or “organic” on the bottle does not necessarily mean that it is reef-friendly. Even those labeled as “Reef-Safe” or “Reef-Friendly” may be misleading, as those terms are unregulated. It’s best to check the ingredients list to ensure that it’s truly safe for your skin and the environment.
3. Shop Locally or Online
Whether you buy your sunscreen at a local beach shop or online, choosing a sunscreen that is safe for the environment can be overwhelming. If you are worried that you’ll accidentally end up with a sunscreen that isn’t safe, we’ve got you covered. Here are 15 reef-safe sunscreen products to choose from this summer.
Protect your skin and the environment by only purchasing reef-friendly sunscreens. Examine the ingredients list and don’t make assumptions, and you’ll be able to find the perfect sunscreen for you at your favorite local shop or online retailer. You’ll be making a great choice for the ecosystem as well as for your health!