Aulani Visitors – Be Aware of New Hawaii Sunscreen Law

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Disney’s Aulani resort in Hawaii is now in a phased reopening. If you’re planning to visit Aulani, or anywhere else in Hawaii, be aware that a new sunscreen law is in place for that state.

The new law, which started on January 1, 2021, had Hawaii become the first state in the US to ban the sale of sunscreen containing the coral-harming chemicals oxybenzone and octinoxate. These ingredients are believed to contribute to coral bleaching, which leads to increased coral mortality levels.

Avoid sunscreens containing petrolatum, commonly known as mineral oil, as well as sunscreens with high content of Titanium Dioxide. This mineral does not biodegrade and is found to react in warm seawater to form hydrogen peroxide, which is harmful to sea life.

Most commercial sunscreens available on the mainland are not compliant with Hawaii’s law. One that does meet the new requirement is Banana Boat Simply Protect SPF 50+ Sunscreen (spray, not lotion). If you’re not confident about finding compliant sunscreen at home, you may want to wait until you arrive at your Hawaiian destination to buy some.

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Erin Foster

Erin Foster is an original member of the Walt Disney World Moms Panel (now PlanDisney), a regular contributor to, and co-author of The Unofficial Guide to Disney Cruise Line. She's been to WDW, DL, DL Paris, Hong Kong Disneyland, Aulani, DVC Vero Beach, and DVC Hilton Head. She's a Platinum DCL cruiser and veteran of 10 Adventures by Disney trips. Erin lives near New York City, where she can often be found indulging in her other obsession - Broadway theater.

6 thoughts on “Aulani Visitors – Be Aware of New Hawaii Sunscreen Law

  • I’m taking a South Pacific cruise with an Aulani stay mixed in. is now a common requirement for other South Pacific islands as well. Living in the Midwest I figured I would be out of luck finding anything. But a trip to Costco and found it right away. It actually had biodegradable on the front of the can and I checked the ingredients as well and it mets the requirement.

  • Hello – Nurse Practitioner here. I would talk to a Dermatologist 🙂

  • We love aulani and go every other year. We belong to the DVD club.
    But here is my problem. I get an allergic reaction from most sun screens. Except ones with the oxi ingredients. That is the one they are banning. What can I use?

  • Has anybody (like Consumer Reports) tested the effectivness of these new formulations to see if they actually work and block the harmful sun rays? It doesn’t do any good if they don’t work and you get burned in the name of saving the enviroment. CU has found some sunscreens to be almost non effective in the past.

    • Hi Bob, I did a quick search on Google and found a few studies on the effectiveness on a lot of different sunscreens. Additionally the FDA has a variety of their own requirements in order to meet certain effectiveness, and to be labeled in certain ways. It looks like “broad spectrum” is the term that matters the most in terms of effectiveness, and in order to have such a designation the FDA does have effectiveness requirements. The sunscreen mentioned in the article which does meet Hawaii’s new law, does have the Broad Spectrum designation which would indicate it meets the FDA’s requirement of effectiveness.

      Hopefully this helps address you concern, thanks for reading!

  • So glad that we are trying to take steps to protect our environment. Let’s hope visitors obey this rule. It’s not hard to follow. Aulani needs to post signs at the sign in desk as well as make it available for sale at the resort or complimentary for guests.


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