What Is Reef Safe Sunscreen?

What Is Reef Safe Sunscreen?

Whenever we wash our face in the bathroom or swim in the sea on holiday, all the products that are on our skin get washed away into the ocean and can affect marine life.

Sunscreens are a particular problem as many of them contain chemicals that can bleach corals and cause environmental stresses on the marine animals that inhabit these areas.

Because of this, we choose to formulate our SPF products using only reef-safe ingredients to ensure that we protect our skin and our environment at the same time.

Read on to find out the problem with sunscreens and how Evolve Beauty is helping to tackle this issue.



Most sunscreens on the market are formulated with oxybenzone or octinoxate. They are widely used in the industry as they block UV radiation and protect the skin from sun damage.

When we wash this sunscreen off at the end or the day, or swim in the ocean, these chemicals get washed off and enter our water system. For the environment, it can have detrimental effects. 

Corals absorb these chemicals and can change the way corals reproduce and grow. This leads to coral bleaching. 

For the marine life that inhabit these areas, the chemicals can damage the growth of green algae and the reproductive system of sea urchins, fish and dolphins.

In 2016, Hawaii banned over the counter sunscreens that contain ingredients such as oxybenzone and octinoxate and went into effect at the start of this year. The ultimate goal was to protect their marine ecosystems and reduce the harmful effects on Hawaiian coral reefs.


This month, we have launched new shades to our Climate Veil SPF 20.

tinted spf

We use non-nano zinc oxide as the SPF ingredient. What this means is that the particles of the zinc oxide are not small enough to penetrate our skin and sit on top. 

This acts as a mineral sunscreen that reflects UV radiation off the skin. 

Non-nano zinc oxide particles also means that coral reefs will not absorb these and disrupt their health. 

Protecting our skin and our environment at the same time doesn’t have to be difficult, which is why we are committed to protecting our marine ecosystems using only reef-safe ingredients. Find out more about our Climate Veil Tinted SPF20 here.

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