As a busy parent, you understand that packing up your family for a few hours of outdoor fun requires more than a few accessories. The younger your children are, the more you need to remember before you hit the beach, the trails or the park. From hand wipes to water bottles, keeping your crew safe and nourished seems to come with an endless list of “to pack” items.
And then there’s sunscreen; you know you need it, but which one should you buy? Can you put the same product on your 8-month-old that you do on your 6-year-old? What if your child has skin allergies? And all this before you’ve even thought about what SPF is the best fit.
To help answer for of your questions, read this easy-to-follow guide, designed to help you learn more about natural sunscreen options and which products may best meet your family’s needs.
Why Choose Natural Sunscreen
Research has shown that conventional sunscreen, the stuff you see on the shelves of most drug stores, absorbs into your bloodstream and can stay there for up to 5 days. It may also open your pores up to be more susceptible to absorbing other chemicals and toxins with which you come in contact. Natural sunscreen (also referred to as mineral sunscreen) is a potentially safer choice for your health, blocking out the sun’s harmful UV rays and allowing you to avoid burns and sun damage without any harmful, skin-irritating chemicals.
The Potential Benefits of Using Natural Sunscreen
Natural mineral sunscreens contain a number of ingredients that protect and preserve your skin. Many natural sunscreen products contain oils such as avocado oil and cocoa butter, which leave your skin smooth – a definite bonus when heading to the beach. Additionally, natural sunscreens often contain enriching vitamin E and other nutrients, which have the potential to protect you from harmful free radicals as well as sun damage.
Different Products for Different Kids (And Parents!)
Even among natural sunscreen options, not every product is created equal. Different ages and stages of life necessitate different skin care products. For example, babies age 6 months or younger should avoid sunscreen as much as possible by staying in the shade.
Parents of older babies and toddlers should look for sunscreen containing zinc oxide and or titanium dioxide like Kid’s Sunscreen SPF 45 from Alba Botanica or Baby Natural Sunscreen Lotion SPF 30 from Goddess Garden Organics. These provide protection while being gentle on delicate skin.
Adults and older children without sensitive skin issues can use a quality mineral sunscreen and reapply as often as the product recommends. If a sensitive skin product is needed, check out Sensitive Sunscreen Fragrance Free SPF 30 from Alba Botanica. When possible, use sun hats and rash guards to stay out of the sun altogether and minimize the need for sunscreen protection.
Sunscreen As You Age
One of the best ways to maintain younger-looking skin is by ensuring your skin stays hydrated and free from sun damage. When it comes to facial moisturizer, use a mineral-based product that contains SPF and helpful nutrients to maintain youthful-looking skin tone. Alba Botanica’s Very Emollient Facial Mineral Sunscreen SPF 20 is a great choice for the summer months. For the rest of your body, look for an all-over daily moisturizer with SPF. For more natural sunscreen options, check out Natural Healthy Concepts’ other sun and outdoor products.
What’s the Deal With SPF?
The American Academy of Dermatology recommends that you always use a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30. The higher the SPF number, the more UVB rays it blocks out. However, it’s crucial to remember that even the highest SPF products don’t block out 100% of the sun’s harmful UVB rays and absolutely must be applied just as often as any other sunscreen. At the end of the day, you’re 97% protected with a quality mineral sunscreen of 30, when applied correctly and often.
What are your favorite natural sunscreen products? What are other ways you protect your family from the sun? We’d love to hear your tips and tricks in the comments section below.