sunscreen & diving

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba Discussions' started by jallen013, Jul 6, 2013.

  1. jallen013

    jallen013 Angel Fish

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    Location: Dallas, TX, USA
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    I try to be sun smart while on the dive boat but, I have always avoided using any kind of sunscreen on my face because I don't want to deal with stinging eyes while under water. Consequently, I most always end up with a sunburn.

    Anyone know of a sunblock that is diver friendly and truly won't sting when it gets in your eyes?
     
  2. danvolker

    danvolker SFDJ Dive Team

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    Much better option : Sunday Afternoons - Sun Protective Hats and Clothing

    Sunscreen itself is toxic to your skin, and more likely to cause cancer than the sun is.....Cancer Prevention: Top 10 Tips
     
  3. ccx2

    ccx2 Barracuda

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: usa virginia
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    hey jallen,ive used lots of differant sunscreens and all of them will burn me eyes , but, No Add brand sunscreen seems to work the best and doesn't burn my eyes like or as bad as most. i wear a big shading brim hat with sunscreen on my nose and cheeks, aint pretty but it does the job.
     
  4. NetDoc

    NetDoc Chairman of the Board

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  5. kelemvor

    kelemvor Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
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    I've got several family members with skin cancer, and the doctors are pretty adamant that sunblock with a minimum SPF30 should be used pretty much anytime you're outdoors. Maybe if you live really far north, vitamin D levels would be a concern. Here in the tropical regions of the world skin cancer from sunburns is a huge risk. The risk of skin cancer is real, and cancer is an unpleasant way to go out.

    Here's an article from the skin cancer foundation on the subject. ASK THE EXPERT: Does sunscreen cause cancer? - SkinCancer.org




    I use the spray on "clear" sunblock when diving, I apply it as best I can to areas that won't be inside the mask. Also apply it before you get on the boat. It'll have ample time to dry and minimize the risk to your eyes. On my most recent keys trip, I got sunscreen in my mask by mistake. It sucked, and lead to one of my dives not being as great as it would have been. Still, I prefer the risk of having a subpar dive to that of getting skin cancer.

    I usually prefer not to be as "black and white" on things, but I've got a personal interest. It is what it is as they say.
     
  6. danvolker

    danvolker SFDJ Dive Team

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    Skin Cancer, in Brief
    Before we discuss melanoma, you need a basic understanding of the three most common types of skin cancer, each named for the type of cells affected:

    1. Basal cell carcinoma (BCC): Begins in the basal cell layer of the skin, typically on the face; the most common form of skin cancer and the most common type of cancer in humans; least likely skin cancer to spread.[SUP]7[/SUP]
    2. Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC): Begins in the squamous cells, typically on the face, neck, ears, lips, and backs of hands; tends to grow and spread a bit more than BCC.
    3. Melanoma: Begins in the melanocytes (the cells that produce the pigment melanin, responsible for your tan); melanin protects the deeper layers of your skin from excess radiation. Melanoma is more likely than other types of skin cancer to spread to other parts of your body and causes more deaths than any other type of skin cancer.[SUP]8[/SUP]
    Don’t Fall for the Melanoma Myth
    If you believe the lure of the sun is equivalent to the siren’s call for melanoma, you’ll be relieved to learn melanoma is not actually caused by sun exposure, unlike the other two types of skin cancer, BCC and SCC. Although the reported number of new cases of melanoma in the US has been reportedly increasing for more than 30 years,[SUP]9[/SUP] a landmark study in the British Journal of Dermatology[SUP]10[/SUP] suggests this apparent increase is a result of non-cancerous lesions being misclassified as “stage 1 melanoma.” In other words, people are being diagnosed with melanoma even when they have only a minimal, non-cancerous lesion, and these diagnoses are significantly skewing cancer statistics.[SUP]11[/SUP] The sun is nothing more than a scapegoat in this phenomenon of “increased melanoma.”

    From Sunshine Helps Protect Your Health | Vitamin D Benefits

    Cancer is a trillion dollar industry.....the money being made by bogus testing and surgical procedures that should not have been performed, is criminal. It is just another example of a system that has created a method of screening that looks for long term profitable treatments, and the concept of finding cures is alien. The drug world wants lifetime addicts....
     
  7. NetDoc

    NetDoc Chairman of the Board

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    Interesting read, Dan. Personally, I hate sunburned ears and want to avoid them, so I wear a hat. :D
     
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  8. JahJahwarrior

    JahJahwarrior Administrator Staff Member

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: West Palm Beach, Fl
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    Solrx claims to not harm the reef, and it doesn't seem to sting my eyes. Neutrogena and bullfrog face sunscreens also seem to be sting free but no claims on the tube about reef safety.

    I'm a big fan of hats and shade but on the deck of a dive boat a hat is not enough due to reflection. One blistered face is all it took for me to start using sunblock on my face. I hope to see more reef friendly, non greasy, effective sunscreens in the future.
     
  9. g1138

    g1138 NAUI Instructor

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
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    Use a non-chemical sunscreen that uses zinc or hard minerals to block the UV. These generally don't run when wet, however they turn your face pasty white and leave a residue on the mask, which comes off easy with a little water and finger rubbing.

    Neutrogena Ultra Sheer is one such brand.
     
  10. Krazyklaws

    Krazyklaws Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Wales, UK
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    We always use P20. It's one of those 'once a day' lotions, you put it in, let it dry and its waterproof. They've also just started making a P50 (factor 50) but I haven't seen it yet.

    My partner is very fair and burns in seconds, so he always carries a Buff too. More practical than a hat on a dive boat.
     
  11. supergaijin

    supergaijin Scuba Instructor

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    Just put the sunscreen on when you wake up. As long as you've given it time (30mins or so) to absorb, it'll not run in to your eyes. Re-apply soon after getting up from the first dive (if you're making a second dive). It'll absorb during the surface interval.

    I also have a family history of malignant melanoma. In NZ and Australia it is common enough and kids are usually required to 'slip, slop, slap' before playing outside during summer. Some schools require a wide-brimmed hat as a uniform for youngsters. I've been burnt silly playing golf in NZ when I forgot to put sunscreen on the back of my neck. That took about 15mins of Southland sun- it can be fierce. By contrast the Maldives sun is tame and I hardly ever get burnt here.

    Sunscreen works, but of course if you sit in the sun for a few hours, you'll burn crispy.
     
  12. jallen013

    jallen013 Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Dallas, TX, USA
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    As you were the first to bring this up... Is it that the non-chemical sunscreens actually do not sting the eyes or more so they don't run so they don't get in your eyes?

    As an aside, I most always wear an Army-Navy store boonie hat on the boat, but my nose and cheeks still end up burnt. Never considered JahJah's reflection.
     
  13. Abdullah

    Abdullah Surface Interval Member

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    Are you using their spray dry or the cream? Do you have to re-apply it between dives?
     
  14. tracydr

    tracydr Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: North Carolina, 3 miles from South Carolina
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    I use Lycra skin under my wetsuit, if diving wet. On my face, titanium and zinc oxide sunscreens are milder. I use one for sensitive skin.
    I always where a hat and sunglasses in addition to sunscreen but I'm basically an albino.
     
  15. drbill

    drbill The Lorax for the Kelp Forest

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    I've used Soleo for several years now... even gave an endorsement for the product when they took it to DEMA. I find I can apply it in the AM, dive all day and still be protected. It is zinc oxide based and supposedly reef friendly.
     
  16. MAKO Spearguns

    MAKO Spearguns ScubaBoard Business Sponsor ScubaBoard Business Sponsor

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    Lycra is an excellent option, especially in sunny, tropical locations. It provides excellent sun protection, is a surprisingly good protection from marine stings and actually can keep you cool (by evaporation) if you splash some water on it now and again.

    We offer an inexpensive lycra hood that will stay tucked in to your suit or dive skin.. Add sunglass and a hat and you are pretty well covered.

    MAKO Camo Lycra Hood


    [​IMG]
     
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  17. g1138

    g1138 NAUI Instructor

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    They don't run. At worse, to over exaggerate, they create a white cloud of minerals if you rub your face underwater. But that's an exaggeration. You won't see much if someone purposely rubs it off their face underwater.
    I've never gotten any in my eyes before, so I wouldn't know if it stings. Probably would if you globbed it in, but more so because of the physical characteristic of the minerals, rather than chemical.
     
  18. danvolker

    danvolker SFDJ Dive Team

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
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    I would not go out on a dive charter boat that did not have a roof overhead for shade---and I will hang out in the shade, not in the sun covered parts of the boat.
    Some of our bigger dive boats in Palm Beach are awesome for this....Narcosis has lots of room under a huge shade roof, and the new boat, Wet Temptations, is spectacular for shade, comfort, no diesel smell, and the list for it goes on !!!
     
  19. tdtaylor

    tdtaylor Assistant Instructor

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    Location: Maryland & Maine
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    Long ago I started wearing large brimmed hats and shirts. I have dark skin, but have many in my family with skin cancer- not pretty. I just avoid the sun, and any burns. Now I am fortunate I find it difficult to burn, but avoidance has served me well. While I have a healthy tan, and could go absolutely bronze, but I live with a skin tone that I get while in the shade. Now if only I could convince my wife and daughters, my wife and one of my daughters being fair skinned.
     
  20. duncanTrevor

    duncanTrevor Garibaldi

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    It sucked, and lead to one of my dives not being as great as it would have been,heah[​IMG].
     

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