Sunscreen is a crucial part of anyone’s skincare routine, but its impact on the environment and human health cannot be ignored. Regular sunscreens have been found to cause harm to coral reefs, marine life, and sensitive aquatic ecosystems, while also disrupting hormone function and vitamin absorption in humans. With thousands of tons of sunscreen ending up in the ocean each year, it is clear that a change is necessary.

Fortunately, there are now biodegradable sunscreen brands that aim to protect both our skin and the environment. These brands have been independently researched and tested by Sustainable Jungle, and their claims have been confirmed. By using these biodegradable sunscreens, individuals can help reduce their impact on the environment and protect their health at the same time.

The Top Biodegradable Sunscreens For A Sustainable Sun-Kissed Glow

Looking for a sunscreen that is both eco-friendly and effective? Look no further than these top biodegradable sunscreens that offer broad-spectrum protection without harming the environment.


FORAH offers a range of biodegradable sunscreens that are packed with powerful antioxidants, soothing oils, and collagen-boosting ingredients. Their Reef Safe Facial Sunscreen comes in a tinted sunscreen tin and a standard sunscreen cream in a recyclable aluminum tube. The tinted Zinc Surf Balm contains a simple combination of non-nano zinc oxide, virgin coconut oil, cacao powder, and beeswax, while the Everyday liquid sunscreen contains a more complex formula specially designed to soothe and moisturize the skin.

All of FORAH’s biodegradable sunscreens are certified organic, cruelty-free, and non-GMO. None of the products contain gluten, harmful chemicals, parabens, synthetic fragrances, microplastics, phthalates, petrochemicals, or dyes. FORAH is also a member of 1% for the Planet, giving back to several organizations for each product purchased.

2. Activist

Activist’s Avasol line of Zinc Mineral Sun Cream takes a stand against things like parabens, nanoparticles, GMOs, and other synthetic chemicals. The sunscreen comes in a range of tints and contains nourishing ingredients like argan oil, jojoba oil, and coconut oil, making it double as organic tinted moisturizer.

Activist is a woman-owned California-based brand that offers refillable, vegan, and cruelty-free organic skincare, like natural makeup remover. Many products come shipped in glass containers, compostable materials, or recyclable refill pouches. The shipping materials are low-impact, recyclable, and or compostable and created using post-consumer waste. Activist is also a member of 1% For the Planet, donating upwards of 5% of revenue to various organizations, like Outdoor Afro.


ATTITUDE gives normal sunscreens the side-eye by crafting high-quality reef safe biodegradable sunscreen alternatives. The mineral-based sunscreens contain non-nano zinc oxide, which protects against harmful UV rays, according to EWG experts. Other natural ingredients, like coconut oil, shea butter, and organic sunflower oil, help keep the skin moisturized in dehydrating summer conditions.

ATTITUDE’s hypoallergenic and reef safe sunscreens are suitable for all skin types, including options for damaged, oil, and sensitive skin. The Sensitive Skin Mineral Sunblock Stick comes unscented, offering broad spectrum protection, and soothes dry skin with oat extract. Skin irritation aside, they’re also free of PEGs, parabens, endocrine disruptors, oxybenzone, or other coral bleaching agents.

ATTITUDE is a Canada-based brand that has a wide range of products for your bath, beauty, home care, and mom or baby needs. As part of PETA’s Beauty Without Bunnies program, ATTITUDE doesn’t test any products on animals and is completely vegan. Although some products contain palm oil, ATTITUDE opts for RSPO-certified Mass Balance sustainable palm oil. Items come from a responsible factory, ensuring worker well-being without any forced child workers or conflict mineral issues. ATTITUDE is also committed to planting a tree for every item purchased through organizations like One Tree Planted and Eden Reforestation.

4. Butter Me Up Organics

Butter Me Up Organics believes that sunscreen doesn’t need harmful chemicals to be effective. Instead, they developed some of the best reef safe sunscreens that are entirely plastic-free and suited for babies, kids, and adults. The reef safe sunscreen ingredients include coconut oil, shea butter, mango butter, non-nano zinc oxide, grapeseed oil, vitamin E, and beeswax. These ingredients work together to offer broad-spectrum protection without harming the environment.

Butter Me Up Organics is committed to being a zero-waste company, using only compostable or recyclable packaging materials. They also donate a portion of their profits to environmental organizations like the Ocean Conservancy.

These top biodegradable sunscreens offer both effective sun protection and eco-friendly ingredients, making them a great choice for anyone looking to enjoy a sustainable sun-kissed glow.

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Why Use Biodegradable Sunscreen?

Biodegradable sunscreen is an eco-friendly alternative to conventional sunscreens. It is made with natural ingredients that are safe for the environment and marine life. Biodegradable sunscreens do not contain harmful chemicals like PABA, octinoxate, oxybenzone, and avobenzone that can damage coral reefs and inhibit algae growth. These chemicals can also disrupt natural hormones and endocrine systems in the body, according to the Environmental Working Group (EWG).

Regular sunscreens can have a massive impact on the environment, with an estimated 4,000 to 6,000 tons of sunscreen entering the ocean annually. This can be harmful to marine life, coral reefs, and other sensitive ecosystems. In response to this environmental disaster, some areas have made it a legal requirement that beach-goers only use reef-safe sunscreen, Hawaii and the Virgin Islands included.

Biodegradable sunscreen is a safe and effective way to protect the skin from harmful UV rays. It contains mineral-based ingredients like zinc oxide and titanium dioxide that provide broad-spectrum sun protection. Biodegradable sunscreens are also water-resistant, making them ideal for outdoor activities like swimming and surfing.

Moreover, some biodegradable sunscreens contain antioxidants like green tea, vitamin E, and aloe vera that help protect the skin from damage caused by free radicals. They are also free of preservatives like parabens and phthalates that can cause allergic reactions and harm the environment.

In summary, biodegradable sunscreen is a safe and effective alternative to conventional sunscreens. It is made with natural ingredients that are safe for the environment and marine life, and it provides broad-spectrum sun protection. By using biodegradable sunscreen, individuals can protect their skin and the environment at the same time.

How We Found The Best Biodegradable Sunscreen Brands

In the search for the best biodegradable sunscreen brands, the team considered several factors to ensure that the chosen products were not only safe for the environment but also effective in protecting the skin.

Factors Considered


The team looked out for natural sunscreen products that did not contain harmful chemicals to marine life such as oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate, octocrylene, homosalate, octinoxate, 4-methyl benzylidene camphor, PABA, and triclosan. They also avoided other ingredients that were harmful to the skin.

Vegan and Cruelty-Free

The team ensured that the products did not contain any animal byproducts and were not tested on animals.

Palm Oil-Free

The team recognized the importance of boycotting palm oil and accepted only RSPO-certified sustainable palm oil when applicable.

Ethical Ingredient Sourcing

The team looked for products that used ethical ingredient sourcing to ensure that the products were not harmful to the environment.

Thoughtful Materials

The team also looked for products that used zero waste packaging, such as compostable or reusable materials, or recycled packaging and shipping materials.

Reef Safe vs. Biodegradable

The team also considered the difference between reef safe and biodegradable products. Reef safe products are formulated to minimize or eliminate ingredients that have harmful effects on coral reefs, such as oxybenzone and octinoxate. Biodegradable products, on the other hand, refer to materials or substances that can break down naturally and decompose into simpler, non-harmful compounds over time.

While mineral sunscreens are generally considered to be more biodegradable compared to chemical sunscreens, the team also noted that not all mineral sunscreen products are created equally. Some conventional mineral sunscreens contain additional additives, emollients, or inorganic ingredients that affect their overall biodegradability.

Final Thoughts on Biodegradable & Reef Safe Sunscreen Brands

In conclusion, the team found that swapping to reef safe and biodegradable sunscreen brands is a must to protect both human health and the environment. These products do not contain ingredients that bleach coral reefs, harm fish reproduction, or cause defects in other marine animals. They also do not harm human health with toxic, hard-to-pronounce chemicals.

The team recommends the use of biodegradable and reef safe sunscreen brands and encourages readers to share this list of where to buy biodegradable sunscreen with their friends and family.