best sunscreen

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485 Posts
Joined Aug 2005
Hello, I was wondering what would be the best sunscreen for the coral reef. We are going to the Western Caribbean in Feb. and I would like to know what the sunscreen should and shouldn't have in it. I am also hopeing this is the place to get the answer?! Thank you in advance!
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East Coast, USA
3,120 Posts
Joined Nov 2002
In my experience when I was snorkeling in Cozumel, we were told not to wear any sunscreen because it affects the coral.

I'll keep an eye out to see if you get any other responses. If not, I'll move this to another board.
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485 Posts
Joined Aug 2005
Thanks for your reply, we are from Michigan and we are very white and burn from just the thought of sun!! So I am not sure no sun screen in the waters of Cozumel will be a good thing! I hope someone will have a sun screen for us!
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Pacific NW
9,883 Posts
Joined Oct 2003
We're going to Playa Uvas in Cozumel. I made reservations for their clear kayaking tour and on the confirmation is this note: Playa Uvas is in the Marine National Park Reef of Chankanaab, so be sure to bring organic or natural sun screen or sun tan only.

After looking around on CC, I learned that "Kiss My Face" is a good brand of eco-friendly sunscreen and that Trader Joe's carries organic sunscreen (don't know if TJ's carries KMF).

Hope that helps!


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The Woodlands,Texas
5,016 Posts
Joined Sep 2003
"No-Ad",which you can buy at Walmart is a great Paba free sunscreen...And a portion of the proceeds go to schools for drug awareness...Dot
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85 Posts
Joined Feb 2001
1st Have a great Cruise,and to make it safe with the sun and many other creatures that may, or may not be in the water, you can count on a lotion that is at your local SCUBA DIVING SHOP and even aboard some ships, and is called SEA SAFE, and is called like that cause is safe for the sea and it keeps you safe from yelly fish and all stinging creatures, like sea lice, etc, but don't think I'm trying to scare you cause you may never need all this protection.
The best part is that is safe to all creatures while keeping you safe from them, and your only problem would be that when you get back home no body can tell you been in the caribbean that is if you use the lotion, cause I used it and after 3 days of scuba diving , 2 or 3 showers per day and swiiming in the pool , and still could not get a tan line any where, and I scrub and scrub and finally on the 4th day of not using this great lotion I finally got some color.

So if you want that, you got to go get it, it works, don't forget to put it on your scalp or wear a hat .....
Seattle, WA/Delray Beach, FL
7,639 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
We purchased several bottles of Caribbean Sunlife while in the Yucatan Peninsula over Thanksgiving. Eco-friendly sunscreen is the only sunscreen allowed inside the eco-parks such as Xel-Ha and Xcaret, so we were prepared.

Caribbean Sunlife is biodegradable and ecologically safe, and it's pretty easy to slather on as well. We have it in SPF 8, 15, 25, and 40 since my husband and I want to be prepared each day, depending on how far along we are on our vacation and how much sun we plan to get on any given day.
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Ontario Canada
4 Posts
Joined Nov 2008
We're Canadian, and burn easily.

You will also want to avoid any sunscreens that contain anything beginning with "oxy" or "hexa" (there are detailed lists available online). Some "natural", "biodegradable" or "organic" sunscreens still contain coral-bleaching ingredients.

Look for all-natural ingredients, with active ingredients including zinc oxide and / or titanium dioxide.

There are two brands that we found would be acceptable to the local parks in the area: Mexitan and Caribbean Sol/Caribbean Solutions.

We also wore UV protective shirts which worked well for us.

Yes, you can sneak in anything, but who would intentionally want to destroy the life there?
45 Posts
Joined Nov 2000
I agree with wearing shirts for protection. I often, when out in the ocean or water for long periods of time, wear the rash guard type shirt that surfers wear, drys quick and good for swimming they have these available both in long and short sleeve. I know some people say I look silly and my friends like to tease me but I've spent a few years living in Australia and after dealing with sun I'm very conscious of the sun and would rather look a bit silly than deal with bad sunburns and skin issues, but I think they're a great investment for things like snorkelling and kayaking and just anything else when your'e out near water for a long time. Also I liked the good ideas for different sunscreens, I'll be looking into those!
Wilmington, NC
748 Posts
Joined Sep 2009
Many of the parks require biodegradable sunscreen. I just bought a bottle of Mexitan as it was recommended by one of the parks in Mexico (maybe Chankaanab, I can't remember.) I have worn it once, just around the yard and it seems to work fine. I leave for the Caribbean in less than 2 weeks. I will post again when we get back about how it held up in the water. If you need to get some, a google search will take you to the manufacturer's site. They have lots of info about what is, and is not in their product.
422 Posts
Joined Aug 2009
A key thing to try and do, regardless of the brand you use, is to put it on at least 40 minutes before you get into the water. This allows the skin to absorb more which protects your skin more and at the same time less gets washed off into the water.
194 Posts
Joined Apr 2009
I like Dr Mercola sunscreen- I use many of the products from that site. I do find the spf 50 a little too thick but it is good for the kids' noses, ears and the parts in their hair
I am outside all year long delivering mail, and only use natural products on my hair and skin. It still works the following year if you have some left over, whereas other products expire and lose their sunscreen protection.
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Eastern Washington
1,031 Posts
Joined Dec 2008
Originally posted by TravlGrl
We purchased several bottles of Caribbean Sunlife while in the Yucatan Peninsula over Thanksgiving. Eco-friendly sunscreen is the only sunscreen allowed inside the eco-parks such as Xel-Ha and Xcaret, so we were prepared.

Caribbean Sunlife is biodegradable and ecologically safe, and it's pretty easy to slather on as well. We have it in SPF 8, 15, 25, and 40 since my husband and I want to be prepared each day, depending on how far along we are on our vacation and how much sun we plan to get on any given day.

Tried to find it on line but all I get are comments no online store. Recommendations? Donna
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