Summer is almost here and my family couldn’t be more excited to enjoy our favorite time of year! What’s not to love about vacations to the beach and tons of activities to do outdoors? While we love the sun, the sun doesn’t always love us though. Everyone in my family has sensitive fair skin that burns easily…trust me nothing is worst than a summer sunburn. In fact, I’ve already had a really bad sunburn this year and summer hasn’t even started yet. My sunburn is actually what motivated me to make sure that I was better prepared for the summer. I want to protect our skin and make sure that my family has everything we need to beat the heat.
Did you know that infants and children up to age 4 years old are at the greatest risk for heat-related illness? Their little body’s temperature control system is easily overloaded. The skin Cancer Foundation estimates that nearly 80% of lifetime sun exposure occurs during childhood. One incident of a blistering sunburn doubles the risk for melanoma later in life. That is why it’s important to make sure children don’t get overheated and have proper sun protection for all outdoor activities.
Top 3 tips to beat the heat and sun:
Schedule outdoor activities carefully: The best time to plan outdoor activities is in the early morning and late afternoon. Avoiding sun exposure between 11 am to 4 pm is most ideal. Sun exposure should be used with caution even when in the shade or on cloudy and cooler days because of reflected light and ultraviolet (UV) rays remain strong.
Apply sunscreen properly: Most people don’t realize that that sunscreen should be applied 30 minutes before going out in the sun. Choose a sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher. Don’t forget to get the nose, ears, hands, feet, shoulders, and behind the neck; lips can also burn, so apply a lip balm with SPF protection. Reapply sunscreen every 2 to 3 hours, or after sweating or swimming.
Pick the right sunscreen:
- Choose a sunscreen that is between SPF 30-50 .
- Purchase chemical free products; when reading the labels be sure to check for zinc oxide as the active ingredient. It is the best natural ingredient to protect the skin. Avoid products that use oxybenzone.
- Avoid spray products! I have to admit they are extremely convenient but not the best choice. The coating isn’t uniform and it is more likely to not properly cover the skin. The fumes are not good for the lungs.
Playful Parent Recommended Sunscreens:
Cover up: Wearing protective clothing, hats and even sunglasses is one of the most effective ways of protecting the skin from UV damage. My doctor recommended that both my child and I start wearing sun protective clothing and this is where Little Leaves Clothing Company comes in to save the day! I discovered this amazing company while browsing online. I fell in love with Little Leaves Clothing Company because it is a company founded by parents who are also doctors. Pediatrician Dr. Carley Gomez-Meade and dermatologist Dr. Carlos Gomez-Meade are passionate about providing sun protective clothing that promotes healthy play and is both fashionable and affordable!
What I love about Little Leaves Clothing Company is the fabric the clothing is made from. The bamboo fiber blend is one of the softest and lightest materials I have ever felt. This high quality fabric is chemicals and toxin free, hypoallergenic, odor resistant, moisture absorbent, antibacterial, and antifungal. Despite that the shirts are long sleeved they are ultra-light weight and perfect for everyday wear. It is ten times more breathable than cotton. One of the best parts is the material blocks 98% of the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays and is ultraviolet protection (UPF) of 50+.
Little Leaves Clothing Company also has a great blog with articles and information about sun protection! https://www.littleleaves.com/blogs/blog
Win a sun protection kit so your family is ready for the summer sun! One lucky winner will receive protective sun clothing, sunscreen and fun toys for outdoor play! The winner will be announced on July 13, 2017 at The Playful Summer- Summer Kick Off Pool Party at the Edward T. Hall Aquatic Center.
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-Comment your favorite summer outdoor activity.
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-This contest is not Facebook affiliated.
***Thank you Little Leaves Clothing Company for sending outfits for my boys to test out so that The Playful Parent could share information about the importance of sun protective clothing. The Playful Parent is not paid to endorse companies. I write articles based on my own experience and opinion to help families. ***