Sunscreen may be the best thing to ever happen to your skin, but we can't say the same for the coral reefs. Four years ago, a study published in the Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology concluded that sunscreens formulated with oxybenzone, a popular UV-filtering ingredient, were killing coral reefs and causing coral bleaching, especially in tourist-heavy areas like Hawaii and the Caribbean. That's really bad news for the thousands of organisms that rely on the marine ecosystem for survival.
The news of the study wasn't exactly warm and fuzzy, but it did trigger a call to action: significantly reduce the use and wear of chemical sunscreens that contain harmful and toxic ingredients like oxybenzone, which has already been banned in Hawaii. So, how can you help? Read ingredient lists, become familiar with other toxic ingredients damaging marine life (like octinoxate and benzophenone-2), and opt for mineral formulas when you can.
Of course, finding a sunscreen that fits your lifestyle and routine is hard enough without considering how it's affecting our planet — so we've done all the guesswork and rounded up 10 reef-safe sunscreens you'll love, ahead.
At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff. All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team. If you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.