Are These Common Bathroom Products Worth the Suffering of Marine Life?

It was tough to deliberately look for photos, I honestly struggled trying to decide what to photograph. I could see a lot of problems in the area: trash, plastic bottles, old masks etc. I finally decided on photographing household objects commonly found in the bathrooms of many individuals. Sunscreen, wet wipes, and exfoliating body wash. I decided to photograph these three items because they all effect the ocean life, and I absolutely love the ocean, and I use these products and I had no idea that these products were causing so much harm. I especially love using products that exfoliate my skin and leave it feeling smooth. I will no longer use the products containing the harmful ingredients. I will make a conscious effort to make more environmentally friendly choices. Exfoliating body wash contains microbeads which add in the exfoliation of skin but cause many problems for ocean life. “Clouds of discarded microbeads make up a toxic debris that settles on river and ocean floors. Marine worms ingest these toxins and then, when they’re eaten by fish or other predators, the fish gobble up microbead poisons along with the worms.” (Animals Australia, 2015) Sunscreen is contains highly toxic ingredients named oxybenzone, octinoxate and octocrylene which harm the coral life, and many reefs of the ocean. Wet wipes contain microplastic that can harm the ocean life. “when marine wildlife eat plastic debris like wet wipes or discarded plastic bags (common among turtles, who mistake the bags for jellyfish), “it just stays in the stomach of the animals and quite often they just die of starvation.” (Romain, 2017) 

References

Animals Australia. (2015, August 27). Plastic (not) fantastic: microbeads are poisoning our oceans. https://www.animalsaustralia.org/features/plastic-microbeads-poisoning-marine-life.php

Romain, A. (2017, June 7). Wet Wipes Are A Huge Environmental Problem, & We Need To Talk About It. Romper. https://www.romper.com/p/wet-wipes-are-a-huge-environmental-problem-we-need-to-talk-about-it-62558

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