While most inlanders are completely oblivious to the perils of jellyfish, any coastal dwellers know they are something that shouldn’t be taken lightly. And unless you plan on never visiting a beach, it's likely you’ll encounter jellyfish at least once in your life. Unfortunately, when it comes to jellyfish, there’s not much to do other than avoid their sanguine bodies. That is, until now. Meet Safe Sea Sun Care, a sunscreen that doubles as jelly fish protection.
Jellyfish are beautiful — no one is denying that — but their stings are anything but. Jellyfish stings range from annoying to life-threatening, and although rarely deadly, they do kill an average of 20 to 40 people each year in the Philippines alone. A BBC report revealed the shocking calculation that the mysterious ocean creatures hurt more people every year than sharks.
Still, even if they don’t kill you, the stings will surely cause some degree of discomfort. Sea Sun Care may not be the world’s first anti- jellyfish cream, but it does seem to be the most promising. Created by Dr. Amit Lotan from the Hebrew University, the lotion aims to “keep ocean lovers in the water and out of agony.”
Sea Sun offers multiple lines of defense against the jellyfish’s off-putting tentacles. According to From The Grapevine, the first line of defense is prevention. The lotion attempts to make the swimmer's skin too slippery for the tentacles. If contact is made, the lotion confuses the jellyfish into thinking it’s attached to a non-organic matter, making it less likely to remain attached.
It does this by absorbing the human skin secretions that inform the jellyfish that it has in fact made contact with a potential meal. The lotion will also try to block the skin from processing the sting, and thus prevents a painful sensation. Finally, if all this fails, the Sea Sun has one last trick in its bag: It can actually disarm the dangerous tentacles. “Safe Sea reduces the pressure in stinging cells so that they cannot fire — effectively disarming them," the lotion’s website explained.
Now, this is all very exciting, but the real question is, does this jellyfish lotion actually work? Yes and no.
“It didn’t completely inhibit the stings, but it came pretty darn close,” Dr. Alexa Kimball, an assistant professor of dermatology at Stanford University's School of Medicine, told From The Grapevine.
Kimball directed a study in which she had volunteers dip one arm with jellyfish repellent and one without into a tank filled with the stinging creatures. It was also noted that Safe Sea lotion proved effective in preventing stings from other ocean menaces such as sea lice, also known as jellyfish larvae.
With the lotion selling at around $13, if you’re going to be buying sunblock anyway, why not give this one a go?