Image by Frank Mckenna on Unsplash

Do you need to choose an eco-suncream?

Are you using an eco-suncream? Perhaps you’ve heard that Hawaii has banned some products because they can damage coral reefs. It’s relatively easy to choose an eco-suncream. But if you’re not going anywhere near a coral reef, do you still need to consider it?

Science educator, Michelle, from Lab Muffin Beauty Science has some surprising information.

The bottom line is this. According to coral expert, Terry Hughes, sun screen should be number 200 on a list of harmful things humans do to coral reefs. However, if you are planning on swimming in small bays or near coral reefs, there are some simple precautions you can take to prevent any harm:

  • Avoid sun screens with the known harmful ingredients, oxybenzone, octinoxate, enzacamene (4-MBC) and zinc oxide
  • Cover up and use less sunscreen
  • Apply sunscreen at least 30 minutes before you swim
  • Use a water resistant sun screen

Choose an eco-suncream

Don’t believe labels that say thing such as reef safe and biodegradable. These labels are not regulated and, according to Michelle, are pretty meaningless. Instead, she suggests, always check the ingredients. And try to tackle the real threat to coral reefs which is climate change.

Drive less, take fewer flights and work on improving your carbon footprint.