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Mom Sun Alert! Just Because It's After Labor Day, Don't Stop Your Little Ones' Sunscreen!

Tue, September 7, 2010 7:26pm EDT by 1 Comment

Before going to a playground or beach, don’t be tempted by the calendar to lay off protecting your small fry. The sun’s rays are just as strong as they were a week ago. Here’s how to sun protect your tots just like Gwen Stefani did when she, Kingston and Zuma hit an LA beach, Aug. 29.

“The best kind of sunscreen to use on a child is chemical -free with an SPF of 15 or higher,” says NYC dermatologist, Dr. Neal Schultz. Like many moms, A-listers often purchase sunscreens for their kids labeled “baby” because they feel safe, but it’s just a marketing gimmick. Instead of carrying around several tubes of SPF, save money and use the same one you use on your child. Chemical -free versions are made of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, which are physical blockers that work immediately after applying. What kid wants to hear, “Wait a half hour before you go outside”?Another important thing to remember: reapply, reapply, reapply! “Make sure you reapply sunscreen every two to three hours. “Even if the bottle is labeled  “waterproof,” put it on once your baby dries off after getting out of water,” recommends NYC dermatologist Dr. Amy Wechsler. “Nothing is truly waterproof and even perspiration can breakdown SPF.”

For those of you looking for some great chemical -free SPF’s for yourself or your tot, here are some options labeled “baby” (for the piece of mind).  Burt’s Bees Chemical Free Sunscreen SPF 15 is a non-greasy lotion that states it’s “safe for kids” and keeps your skin moisturized. Good for face and body, California Baby No Fragrance SPF 30+ Sunscreen Lotion is extra gentle. Made in Australia, Invisible Zinc has an SPF of 30 and is specially formulated for the face. Kids may especially like sunscreen in a stick because they can roll it on themselves. Try Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Sunblock Stick SPF 60.

— Jeannine Morris