The Little Urchin range of natural* skin care products, including reef safe sunscreen, natural* moisturisers and a natural* tinted sunscreen, have all been specially formulated to double not only as a suitable lotion to apply to your skin but also as a suitable lotion to use for preserving our natural marine life.
We have known for a number of years that traditional sunscreen types containing the active ingredients of oxybenzone and octinoxate are harmful for the natural marine environment. It is these chemicals that, when washed off while we play in the ocean, have contributed to the devastating attack on our natural coral reef systems, including coral bleaching. These coral systems are vital for maintaining a healthy and balanced marine environment for life in the sea as well as for providing benefits to people who rely on the sea for sustainable income, recreational activities and the calming effects that the raw, natural beauty of our organic world offers us all.
Coral reefs provide vital protection from the deeper sea, helping to reduce the impact of rough tidal systems. They create gentle environments ideal for promoting sea populations of fish and aquatic mammals. For the people who live closest to the sea, the reef systems provide vital weather protection, helping to reduce the tidal effects of coastal storms.
An obvious question: if these types of chemicals damage elements in the natural world, do they also have a damaging impact on our skin?
In our search for a more natural* and reef safe sunscreen, we teamed up with the best formulators in Australia to develop a clean, clear sun protection lotion containing organic ingredients. We knew that there are two main types of sunscreen: physical blocker sunscreens, also commonly known as mineral sunscreens; and chemical-absorber sunscreens which often include chemicals found to be dangerous for our aquatic environment and that sometimes cause severe skin irritations for people with sensitive skin types.
Chemical absorber sunscreens use chemicals to absorb UVA and UVB rays. Mineral sunscreens, on the other hand, use a barrier protection method. The mineral sunscreens prevent the absorption of harmful sun radiation while worn.
We consider that physical blocker mineral sunscreens containing zinc oxide provide the most suitable protection – both for the body and the reefs. When worn on the skin, these sunscreens create a powerful broad-spectrum protection without leaving toxic residue in the ocean after your swim or on your body. When choosing your sunscreen, always opt for a minimum SPF rating of 30 to ensure maximum sun safety, particularly for children. (Studies show that additional protection from a higher SPF rating is minimal).
The Little Urchin range of reef safe sunscreen has been designed specifically to embrace the natural* barrier type protection methods of sun protection while also enjoying a unique formulation that absorbs into the skin and doesn’t leave a white filmy or greasy residue. Containing non-nano particles, the formula uses naturally-occurring* preservatives to maintain its superior SPF rating which means that our complete range of skin care products are free from synthetic preservatives and nasty chemicals and they feel good while you’re wearing them.
In Australia, as elsewhere in the world, you can’t afford to take any chances while you’re enjoying the sunshine. It’s important to ensure that your skin is protected in all weather against the damaging effects that the sun’s radiation can have – as often an overcast day can experience the same, if not higher, levels of UVA radiation than in high summer. These effects can include the development of skin cancers and premature ageing resulting in wrinkled, dry skin and uneven skin tones. Now, with the Little Urchin range of reef safe sunscreen, you can enjoy all of the benefits of a highly protective sunscreen which is safe for the environment, suitable for all skin types – including kids (see our baby sunscreen for more) – and actively promotes the health and youthful glow of your skin.
To maximise the benefits of using our reef safe sunscreen range, consider developing a strong and vital skin care regime. Your skin care regime should include these four important steps: cleansing, exfoliation, moisturising and sunscreen.
You should cleanse your skin at least twice every day. Cleansers are important for removing excess oils and dead skin cells that can contribute to skin blemishes like pimples. Cleansing twice daily will ensure that your skin remains clear, clean and glowing with that youthful radiance we all love. If you’re not sure what type of cleanser works best for your skin tone, consider consulting a skin care professional for advice. They’ll take you through the various types of natural cleansers available and why each work slightly differently, depending on what your skin needs.
Exfoliation is necessary for keeping the skin all over your body clean and clear but you should only be actively exfoliating with a granular agent like ground coffee beans or apricot seeds, about twice per week.
Moisturising should occur every day. Along with our reef safe sunscreen range, we have also developed a daily moisturiser for face and body and after sun exposure gentle enough for use all over your body, including on your face. The best times to moisturise are when your skin is slightly damp and freshly cleaned so try to institute a moisturising regimen after showering or bathing. Rub your natural* moisturiser into your skin gently and thoroughly to ensure its absorbed.
Finally, use our reef safe sunscreen and tinted sunscreen range to protect your skin while you’re outside. Our tinted sunscreen range enjoys the same chemical-free formulation that our reef safe sunscreen has been designed for, ensuring that its suitable for everyone – and the world’s coral reefs. Using a tinted sunscreen can help to even out uneven skin tones, generating a glowing, all-over luminosity and youthful appearance. Sun protection should also be augmented with a strict cover-up regime while you’re outside enjoying the weather. Try not to spend too much time outdoors throughout the hottest parts of the day, particularly in summer, and reapply your natural* sunscreen ever 1 to 3 hours. Even water-resistant sunscreen, like our reef safe sunscreen, requires re-application regularly if you’re swimming and towelling off frequently. Generally, you should re-apply before heading into the water again to ensure that you’re as protected as possible.
As part of our commitment to ensure that we preserve the world’s natural beauty and look after one another, we are also a member of the One Percent for the Planet movement. We donate at least 1% of our annual sales revenue to environmental organisations around the world who are committed to fighting for the planet. Research has shown that non-nano zinc oxide – the active ingredient in our range of natural* sunscreen – is suitable for use on sensitive skin and is safe for the marine environment we all love to play in.
Be kind to your skin and the environment. Order our reef safe sunscreen online or find a local stockist near you today. Switching to more suitable and sustainable sun protection products ensures that we not only keep ourselves and our loved ones protected, but that we also look after our bodies while we protect them from the sun.
*We use the term ‘natural’ because the ingredients in our products are ones found in nature that are unharmful to the body and used in their natural form or are refined, purified or transformed in the laboratory from sources in nature. The refinement, purification and transformation processes of certain ingredients are chemical processes required to make the underlying, natural ingredients suitable for use in a sunscreen or moisturiser product. These processes do not involve the use of synthetic chemicals.
Mother nature doesn't miss much. That's why she is at the heart of everything we do.
Studies show that many chemicals in common sunscreens can be toxic to both human life and marine life and can impair coral growth, induce bleaching and damage reproductive systems. Your pledge will help preserve what’s left of our precious reefs.
Your body’s largest organ is your skin. What it absorbs can be beneficial or toxic. Healthy coral reefs are one of the most valuable ecosystems and greatest wonders on Earth. They are also worth billions of dollars in economic and environmental terms. Avoidance of toxic chemicals protects both your body and our precious marine life.
We know that small changes have a big impact. Our #ReefSafeMeSafe Pledge is a campaign to decrease the use of harmful chemical sunscreens in Australia and around the world. We urge everyone to choose sunscreen free from chemicals that harm our bodies, our oceans and our coral reefs.