How to choose the right sunscreen for your kids

This post is part of a series that focuses on children’s and women’s health, as part of a sponsored partnership with Aurora Health Care.I’m totally on board the sunscreen train.I know it helps prevent melanoma. And I definitely don’t want my kids to deal with the pain of a bad sunburn.

But when I go shopping for sunscreen, it’s like I’m lost in a sea of different sized bright bottles that smell like coconut and tropics, and either spray, ooze or stick.

Which one to choooooose?

Thankfully, my partners at Aurora Health Care have made this conundrum a bit clearer.

Sunscreen must-haves

First of all, any sunscreen you choose needs to have both UVA and UVB protection. (All sunscreens have UVB protection, but look for ingredients like oxybenzone, avobenzone, Helioplex, titanium dioxide, or zinc oxide to make sure it has UVA protection.)

Secondly, your sunscreen should be water resistant. Even if you’re to swimming, you’re probably going to sweat. Water resistant sunscreen is effective for 40 or 80 minutes when exposed to water and then needs to be reapplied.

Finally, you should use an SPF of at least 30. (You’ll get additional protection with a higher SPF, but once you reach an SPF of 50 the additional protection is minimal.)

Alright. Now once you’ve accounted for those requirements, it’s time to decide between a spray, a cream, or a stick.

Some things to consider:

A cream or lotion offers strong coverage, lasts longer, and can have a moisturizing effect.

Sprays are easy to apply onto wriggly toddlers, are not greasy, and dry quickly, but they are difficult to apply evenly.

Sticks are probably not practical for your whole body, but they are perfect for around the eyes.

Helpful tips for applying sunscreen:

Put it on 15-30 minutes before going out in the sun.

Use about two tablespoons to cover all exposed skin.

Re. app. ly. (You should reapply every two hours or more if you’re swimming.)

What kind of sunscreen do you like the best? Comment below!

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