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Thailand National Parks Sunscreen Ban
BY Reef Repair | August 6, 2021
News

Thailand Sunscreen Ban Information

Summary

If your sunscreen or cosmetic product contains Oxybenzone (Benzophenone-3, BP-3), Octinoxate (Ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate), 4-Methylbenzylid Camphor (4MBC) or Butylparaben (butyl p-hydroxybenzoate). It is now prohibited from being used inside of Thailand national parks, including any and all marine parks.

Thailand has made it a law that any and all cosmetics (mostly sunscreens) that contain any one of the four ingredients listed below, are strictly prohibited from “being used in” or “brought into” any national parks in Thailand. This includes both land based and marine based national parks, which is great news for coral reefs in Thailand.

  • Oxybenzone (Benzophenone-3, BP-3)
  • Octinoxate (Ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate)
  • 4-Methylbenzylid Camphor (4MBC)
  • Butylparaben (butyl p-hydroxybenzoate)

When visiting national parks in Thailand you must check your cosmetics, especially your sunscreen, does not contain any of the ingredients listed above. Otherwise you may be facing stiff penalties and even deportation for not complying with the new laws. Fines can range all the way up to 100,000 THB which is currently around $3,000 USD.

Oxybenzone danger to humans and marine life
Oxybenzone and Octinoxate are extremely toxic to coral reefs!

The news of this new law came very fast and it has left a few people with some questions regarding it. We will attempt to clear up some of the myths and answer the most common questions we have received regarding the new sunscreen ban.


Is All Sunscreen Banned?
No: not all sunscreen is banned!

Your sunscreen is only prohibited from use in Thailand National parks if your sunscreen contains any one of the following four ingredients, in any amount.

  • Oxybenzone (Benzophenone-3, BP-3)
  • Octinoxate (Ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate)
  • 4-Methylbenzylid Camphor (4MBC)
  • Butylparaben (butyl p-hydroxybenzoate)

So please check your sunscreen ingredients!

What Is The Fine?
You can be fined up to 100,000 THB

The fine for bringing or using a banned sunscreen in or into any Thailand national park or marine parks is set at a maximum of 100,000 THB or around $3,000 USD. This can also likely be applied per offence.

Meaning the fine can be levied at multiple people in a group, or potentially even once per bottle of offending sunscreen found to be in violation of the decree. So again, please carefully check your sunscreen ingredients before taking them into marine parks or any national parks in Thailand!

Who Is Policing The Law?
Likely any national parks staff or representatives

From the decree is appears that ultimately the Thailand “Department of National Parks” is responsible for enforcing the ban. Though from the release there is not going to be any special task force set-up for the task.

Please note that this is not just a national park rule. This law is a nation wide decree that became enforceable from the 4th of August 2021 after publication in the Thailand Royal Gazette. Meaning that any law enforcement official in Thailand can and will likely help enforce this law in and around national parks, not just national park staff.

Also, tour operators and tour guides will likely be encouraged to help enforce the ban by checking guests or bags for banned sunscreens. If you are visiting a hotel inside of a national park, or staying on a liveaboard visiting Thailand’s famous Similan Islands, you can be sure that your tour guide will not allow banned sunscreens to be used.

Can A Tour Guide Fine Me?
Tour guides are park representatives

It is unlikely that a tour guide here in Thailand will try to fine you for having a banned bottle of sunscreen. Though be aware that most tour guides here are deeply connected with law enforcement and park officials in an effort to protect the marine or natural forest environments.

Our advice is to not argue with your tour guides. If they ask you not to use your sunscreen in the park because it contains the banned chemicals, it will be much easier to comply with them than to argue and potentially get whacked with a massive fine.

Tour guides in Thailand are very friendly, but they are also interested in keeping their parks (work places) clean and healthy.

Is The Ban For Marine Parks Only?
The wording is slightly unclear

The decree specifically mentions marine national parks several times, whilst only occasionally referencing other national parks. The ban is clearly going to be enforced in marine parks in Thailand.

The decree then states that “Sunscreens containing chemical components harmful to corals are forbidden to be used in or brought into National Parks“. So this excerpt definitively references all national parks.

Our advice is to expect this ban to be enforced in all national park areas of Thailand, both marine and land based.

Can I Buy Park Safe Sunscreen In Thailand?
Park safe sunscreen is easy to find

If you couldn’t get any park safe, reef safe or all natural sunscreen before your trip to Thailand, you can easily find various “National Park Safe” sunscreens either online, at your hotel, via your tour guides or even in supermarkets.

If you need to purchase Reef Repair sunscreen, which is 100% National Park Safe for use in Thailand. You can visit the following pages to find retailers near to you.

Or you can also order our products online via our website or even Lazada (Thailand). We can arrange delivery direct to your hotel in Thailand, plus you get free shipping on all orders within Thailand if ordered from our website.

Delivery time is between 3 – 5 business days.

  • Type: Sunscreen
  • SPF: 50
  • Water Resistant: 80 Min
  • UVA:
  • UVA II:
  • UVB:
  • Reef Safe:
  • Moisturising:
  • Recyclable:
  • Baby Safe:
  • Kid Safe:
  • Non Oily:
  • Natural: 100%
Join The Revolution

Join the Reef Repair skin & sun care revolution today and help protect coral reefs in Thailand.

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