10 Beach Myths You Think Are True

Does urine really relieve pain from a jellyfish sting? We reveal the truth behind this and other common beach myths.

By: Farima Alavi
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Photo By: Illustration by Kori Clark

Photo By: Illustration by Kori Clark

Photo By: Illustration by Kori Clark

Photo By: Illustration by Kori Clark

Photo By: Illustration by Kori Clark

Photo By: Illustration by Kori Clark

Photo By: Illustration by Kori Clark

Photo By: Illustration by Kori Clark

Photo By: Illustration by Kori Clark

Myth: A Base Tan Will Protect You From a Sunburn

Truth: The more you expose your skin to the sun, the greater chances you have of developing melanoma. 

Myth: Wait 30 Minutes After Eating to Swim

Truth: The common belief is that blood rushes to your digestive tract right after eating, so your arms and legs can't properly pump during swimming, but there is no scientific evidence of this. Exercise-induced anaphylaxis can occur, but it is rare.

Myth: Urine Relieves Pain From a Jellyfish Sting

Truth: Unless you want to play a joke on somebody, the Red Cross suggests soaking the sting in vinegar, rubbing alcohol or combination of baking soda and seawater.

Myth: SPF 45 Is Stronger Than SPF 15

Truth: This is partially true. You can stay in the sun longer if you use SPF 45, but you need to reapply often for it to be effective.

Myth: Sharks Prey on Humans

Truth: Sharks prey on sea lions, dolphins and other sea mammals. When they attack humans, it's a case of mistaken identity.

Myth: Ocean Waves Live Inside a Conch Shell

Truth: Okay, so you haven't believed this since you were a kid, but the reason it sounds like ocean waves are inside a conch shell is because of the shell's shape. Sounds from the surrounding environment bounce off the shell and echo in the shell's hallow space.

Myth: A Beach Umbrella Completely Blocks the Sun

Truth: Although it's smart to stay in the shade, you still need to apply sunscreen. Sand reflects 17 percent of UV radiation, which is enough to give you a sunburn.

Myth: Lobsters Are Red

Truth: They're actually olive-green or gray. Lobsters turn red when exposed to heat because the pigment, astaxanthin, absorbs blue light - giving the lobster a red color.

Myth: Only Oysters Make Pearls

Truth: Most pearls in jewelry are made by oysters. However, mollusks, like clams and scallops, also produce pearls.

Myth: Nudist Beaches Are For Retired Folks

Truth: You may think it's only for your grandparents, but nudist beaches are becoming more popular. People 18 years and up, from all walks of life, visit nudist beaches every year.

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