Sunscreen is critical when visiting Belize, particularly when you’re fair-skinned, since the sun may be powerful with this part of the world. However, standard sunscreens could be incredibly damaging to your environment, especially the important reef systems that lie just from the Belizean coast. So it’s necessary to use reef-safe sunscreen.
Here we walk you through what ‘reef-safe’ means, why should you use this sort of product, and many ways you can protect yourself from your sun without resorting to sunscreen.
What makes regular sunscreen unsafe for reefs?
Regular sunscreens often contain a couple of compounds, oxybenzone or octinoxate, because both versions are damaging to delicate ocean ecosystems, including coral reefs.
When you swim or shower with these sorts of sunscreens on the skin, the chemicals make their way into the stream, eventually resulting in the reefs to bleach. Once a reef is bleached, will still be alive but grows more fragile and subject to disease and death.
As well to be a hugely popular tourist attraction, we also understand that coral reefs are necessary to maintain the healthiness of our oceans, and we all must make sure we protect them. Using reef-safe sunscreen is a easy way where we can accomplish this.
What’s the visible difference between reef-safe and biodegradable sunscreens?
When you consider reef-safe sunscreen, you might also come across the word biodegradable. But what is the main difference between reef-safe and biodegradable?
Basically, these terms are interchangeable. Like reef-safe sunscreens, biodegradable sunscreens stop working over time , nor contain chemicals which are known to damage coral reefs.
Which are the most effective reef-safe sunscreens?
There are some pointers to take into account when choosing a sunscreen that may do the least harm to our oceans:
- Choose a sunscreen which has something called ‘non-nano particles’. Basically, which means the particles are so large for coral reefs to ingest, which will limit the injury that they cause.
- Try to discover a sunscreen constructed from zinc oxide or titanium dioxide, each of which are believed for being safer to the environment.
- Check this list, which rates a huge selection of sunscreens determined by their environmental safety (and as well gives tips about which chemicals to prevent).
- Use a sun cream, instead of a sun spray. When you spray in your sunscreen, it could possibly easily land within the sand and can later be washed into your sea.
Can I buy reef-safe sunscreen in Belize?
Unfortunately, it really is almost impossible to discover reef-safe sunscreen in Belize. It’s therefore essential buy the correct enter your own country and bring it with you if you visit.
How to safeguard yourself on the sun without the need for sunscreen
Of course, you have the option to never wear sunscreen in any way. While we wouldn’t recommend basking in Belize’s blazing sun all day at a time without protection, listed below are a couple of suggestions on how to shield yourself through the sun:
- Look for shaded areas, or make use of an umbrella, so you have less publicity to UV rays.
- Avoid spending some time in the sun whether it is at its strongest, between 11 am and 3 pm.
- Wear clothing made up of SPF, that can act as a barrier between you and the sun without causing damage for the ocean.