At Honua, we only use physical SPF because the data and years of tests show that it is safe for our skin, our children's skin, our coral reefs and our waterways (oceans, rivers, etc.). And for the cool sea turtles that frequent our reefs. Specifically, we choose to use zinc oxide as it has proven to be the safest for our skin and our ecosystem.
Chemical SPFs have repeatedly shown to wreak havoc on coral reefs worldwide, so much so that many countries and states have banned certain chemicals entirely. While this is good news, the challenge still remains as these products still exist in the market and are often used, further damaging our already fragile ecosystem.
Two years ago, Hawaii passed the first ever ban of sunscreens containing certain ingredients found to be toxic to oceans and coral reefs. Oxybenzone and octinoxate are the harmful chemicals included in the ban, which goes into effect January 1, 2021. This law only bans the sale, so unfortunately visitors will continue to bring in toxic sunscreens, either to use them up or because they don't know any better.
Other regions that also enacted similar bans (or are in conversations to) include: US Virgin Islands, Key West, Australia, Palau and certain regions in Mexico. Hopefully more regions follow suit and we can eliminate the production of sunscreens that harm our oceans.
We LOVE to talk sunscreens and SPF so feel free to email us or comment below with any thoughts or questions! And check out our Malu Protecting Day Cream with SPF30. Proceeds benefit Sustainable Coastlines, a nonprofit that keeps our beaches and oceans clean.
Lots of Aloha to you ~ Team Honua