Reef Safe and Reef Friendly Sunscreens

Sunscreen is a must-have item for your beach bag, but not all sunscreens are created equal. Some sunscreens can damage coral reefs. Coral reefs are ecosystems that have been around for over 250 million years and provide homes to 25% of all marine life. But what makes these amazing ecosystems so special? And why should you care if they’re harmed by sunscreen?


What Is Reef-Safe Sunscreen?

Reef-safe sunscreen is a type of sunscreen that is non-toxic to coral reefs. Reef-safe sunscreens contain no toxic chemicals that can harm coral reefs, such as oxybenzone and octinoxate (also known as PABA). These ingredients are widely used in sunscreens and other skin care products because they absorb UV rays from the sun, protecting your skin from getting burned or developing wrinkles. But these chemicals also negatively affect marine ecosystems; they cause bleaching when they enter seawater at high concentrations, killing coral polyps and preventing them from producing nutrients needed for growth.


What Is Reef-Friendly Sunscreen?

Reef-friendly sunscreen is not reef-safe. Reef-friendly sunscreens contain harmful ingredients to coral, such as oxybenzone and octinoxate. These chemicals can cause bleaching and even death of coral reefs. However, some reef-friendly sunscreens on the market do not contain these harmful ingredients but still protect from the sun’s UV rays.

Reef-safe sunscreen can protect you from UV rays while being safe for the environment around you–including our beloved marine life!


Difference Between Reef-Friendly and Reef-Safe Sunscreen

A reef-safe sunscreen is a sunscreen that does not contain ingredients that harm coral reefs. A reef-friendly sunscreen is also a safe product for coral reefs, but it has additional attributes, such as being biodegradable and not containing microplastics.


While the terms are often used interchangeably, there is a difference between them: A product can be both reef-safe and reef-friendly (or vice versa). In other words, if you buy something labeled “reef-safe” or “reef friendly,” there’s no guarantee that it will protect your skin from UV rays while also not harming marine life in general–it depends on what exactly was put into this particular product!


Do Reef-Safe and Reef-Friendly Sunscreens Work?

Now that you know what to look for in a reef-safe or reef-friendly sunscreen, how do you know if it’s working? There are several ways to test the effectiveness of your sunscreen. The easiest way is to take a small sample of water, put it in a clear container, and then apply some sunscreens onto the water’s surface. Let it sit there for 10 minutes before removing any residue with cotton balls or tissues; this will help prevent contamination from other sources (like sweat). If there are no signs of discolorations after 10 minutes–or if there are slight discolorations but not enough to affect coral growth–then your product passes this test!


How Does Sunscreen Harm Coral Reefs?

Sunscreen is a double-edged sword for coral reefs. It protects against the sun’s harmful rays, which is good for you and your skin. But it also blocks ultraviolet (UV) radiation from reaching coral, preventing them from photosynthesizing and producing food for themselves. Moreover, many sunscreens contain chemical compounds that make water more acidic when they’re washed off in the ocean–and studies have shown that acidification can harm corals’ ability to grow or reproduce.


Why Are Coral Reefs Important?

Coral reefs are the most diverse ecosystems on Earth, housing more than 25% of all marine life. They provide us with many benefits:

  • Food security – Coral reefs provide a source of protein for more than 500 million people in Asia and Africa through fish caught in these waters.
  • Economy – Coral reefs are also crucial to tourism, contributing billions of dollars annually to global economies. It’s estimated that one in five jobs worldwide depends on healthy oceans and seas!
  • Medicines – Many medicines derived from plants or animals were originally discovered through research conducted at coral reefs; if we lose these ecosystems, we risk losing valuable medicines for future generations too!


Bottom Line

Coral reefs are a critical part of our ecosystem and must be protected. While there are many ways to do this, one of the simplest is choosing reef-safe or reef-friendly sunscreen when you go out into the sun. This will ensure that your skin won’t harm these precious ecosystems while protecting you from dangerous UV rays!


What is Lorem Ipsum?

Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry. Lorem Ipsum has been the industry’s standard dummy text ever since the 1500s, when an unknown printer took a galley of type and scrambled it to make a type specimen book. It has survived not only five centuries, but also the leap into electronic typesetting, remaining essentially unchanged. It was popularised in the 1960s with the release of Letraset sheets containing Lorem Ipsum passages, and more recently with desktop publishing software like Aldus PageMaker including versions of Lorem Ipsum.


Why do we use it?

It is a long established fact that a reader will be distracted by the readable content of a page when looking at its layout. The point of using Lorem Ipsum is that it has a more-or-less normal distribution of letters, as opposed to using ‘Content here, content here’, making it look like readable English. Many desktop publishing packages and web page editors now use Lorem Ipsum as their default model text, and a search for ‘lorem ipsum’ will uncover many web sites still in their infancy. Various versions have evolved over the years, sometimes by accident, sometimes on purpose (injected humour and the like).


Where does it come from?

Contrary to popular belief, Lorem Ipsum is not simply random text. It has roots in a piece of classical Latin literature from 45 BC, making it over 2000 years old. Richard McClintock, a Latin professor at Hampden-Sydney College in Virginia, looked up one of the more obscure Latin words, consectetur, from a Lorem Ipsum passage, and going through the cites of the word in classical literature, discovered the undoubtable source. Lorem Ipsum comes from sections 1.10.32 and 1.10.33 of “de Finibus Bonorum et Malorum” (The Extremes of Good and Evil) by Cicero, written in 45 BC. This book is a treatise on the theory of ethics, very popular during the Renaissance. The first line of Lorem Ipsum, “Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet..”, comes from a line in section 1.10.32.