3 Sunscreen Mistakes To Avoid When Surfing

by Robert Hing on May 15, 2022

3 Sunscreen Mistakes To Avoid When Surfing

By its very nature, surfing will expose you to the elements without fail. While a little Vitamin D is beneficial, you're probably already getting your fair share from spending time in the water anyway. 

Lack of protection against short term burns has a number of long term implications. Melanoma & skin cancers are of course the predominant issues. But so is premature ageing and damaged skin. After all, no one wants their face to look like an old pair of cricket gloves in your early 30s. Advice such as avoiding the sun between 10am - 3pm isn't practical for the avid surfer so we've compiled a few other handy tips & tricks below. 

1.Sunscreen coming off

The worst enemy of any sun conscious surfer is the ability for sunscreen to easily wash off in the water. Standard sunscreens just won't do the job, leaving you often unknowingly exposed for hours on end and only aware of the damage when you finally make it back to the carpark after your session.

The best solution is to invest in a quality zinc option. Zinc oxide provides the largest UVA and UVB coverage, is natural, and won't harm the very reef that you're enjoying


2. Don't forget your lips

Burns on the lips, especially in the tropics such as Indonesia, are all too common and are extremely painful. Lip cancer is particularly aggressive and standard sunscreen won't cut it while you're surfing. Grab thick lip balm designed for your lips and coat it on.

3. Wear protective clothing!

Considering that standard sunscreen won't do the job for your face, why would you expose other areas of your body too? It's especially tempting in warm water surfing to walk the plank by wearing just a singlet or shirt. Don't do it!

Invest in a surf hat. Hats that have a chin or neck strap can help save your scalp, forehead and ears from direct UV light while surfing. A long arm rashie is a must too. 

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