Whether you're spending time at the beach, the bay, or anywhere in the sun, it's important to wear sunscreen. If you're concerned about the way your sunscreen impacts the environment around you, you might be curious about eco-friendly options. When it comes to being in the ocean, this is especially important. Unfortunately, many sunscreens are bad for coral reefs, meaning that we're damaging the ocean while wearing it in for a swim.
As the New York Times reports, roughly 14,000 tons actually ends up in the oceans every year, with the majority of it hitting reefs in Hawaii and the Caribbean.
What do you need to avoid in a sunscreen? First check out the active ingredients, which are, sadly, also the most worrisome. Preservatives, like parabens, can cause problems for the environment, too. The most common compound found in sunscreens, oxybenzone, is a major one to avoid. Octinoxate is the other big one you want to skip.