Plunge into the glistening waters of the Great Barrier Reef, swimming through colourful corals and unique marine life. Spending your day in pure paradise, as you discover epic attractions and unforgettable activities. But before you dive below, considering the sunscreen you’ve a smear on your skin is a small but important step to take.

Why Do You Ask?

Sunscreen may be a lifesaver for you on those scorching hot summer days, but to the reef, it’s a slow killer. This is all due to the harmful chemicals that are within the sunscreen. Ingredients like oxybenzone, nanoparticles, camphor, or methylparaben all affect the reef differently, but unfortunately all negatively.

One of the first things you probably do when in the sun is to apply sunscreen. This routine has been engraved in us from a young age, with our mothers, advertisements, and doctors all strongly enforcing this habit. So, when visitors trek out to the Great Barrier reef, the majority of us will slip slop slap to avoid any blistering sunburn. But what we do forget, that no matter however long we may wait for the sunscreen to dry, the liquid will slowly melt off us and leach into the deep ocean.

This causes harmful ingredients to seep into the nearby corals, which can disrupt a coral’s reproduction and growth development, which ultimately leads to coral bleaching. Although sunscreen is in no way the only cause of the Great Barrier reef’s damage, the hundreds of swimmers soaked with sunscreen defiantly cause significant harm.

Sun-Blocking Alternatives

Reef -Safe Sunscreen

Don’t chuck out your sunscreen just yet! For there are many brands out there that actually are absolutely fine to use on the reef. By swapping out oxybenzone or octinoxate for a non-nano titanium dioxide or even a zinc oxide, sunscreen brands can create a based formula that is much safer for the environment. brands such as Thinksport, All Good, and Babo Botanicals all offer you guilt free way to keep that sunburn at bay.

Sun-Protecting Clothing

What better way to protect your skin by covering it up? Instead of walking around in that tight speedo or XS bikini, wear a t-shirt or long dress, covering your body from the harmful rays without any fuss. With swimming, try out some waterproof attire, including a rash top or wetsuit so you can discover the reef without any guilt of worries.

Explore Our Great Barrier Reef Tours