I might have played in the sun a little too much. I wished I listened to my mother when she scolded me about not wearing sunscreen, big hats and sunglasses. Now that I am a mother of a white white baby, I am the one worried 24/7 about protecting my daughter’s skin. We love the beach, and living in Hawaii means we can go to the beach all year round, and we do! So I created an easy beach routine that has helped me worry less and enjoy our time in the sun…
1. Leaving her naked in the sun for 20 minutes.
A friend of mine advised me to leave my newborn naked in the morning sun for 15 minutes to make her skin strong, avoid diaper rash, and get her dosage of daily vitamin D. So I have been doing that since day one. And she loves it! It should be the morning sun, before 9am is best!
2. Wearing UV apparel protection
I think no sunscreen beats the physical protection from a good UV swimming apparel. And it’s also easier to put it on than fighting to rub sunscreen all over her body. So after our 20 minutes naked in the sun I cover her with a full swimming suit and a swim flap hat that works very well and she actually enjoys putting them on.
3. Applying safe sunscreen
With the full body protection I just need to apply sunscreen on her face, neck, and hands. It’s not her favorite part of the beach routine, but if I let her put sunscreen on me first, then I have a better chance to get her to wear it. I am always looking for safe and effective sunscreens that are free of chemicals. The two brands that I have been using are the Little Hands Hawaii and Thinkbaby.
4. Playing just before 10 am
Not just babies but anyone should avoid sun exposure from 10 am to 4 pm, because during this time the UV rays are the most intense and can have a harmful effect on our skin. So we try to be at the beach well before 10 am so she has enough time to play without being exposed to harsh sun.
5. Sipping water
I do my best to keep a water bottle next to her all day. Especially when she is too busy to remember anything other than splashing water, collecting shells, leaves, and any other little interesting creatures that she can find at the beach.
Another sunblock that is really important is sunglasses. I have been trying to make her wear one, but she refuses to wear it for more than ten seconds. Now I get my mother’s frustration and constant worry about sun protection. Sorry mom! Hopefully, Sky will grow up taking care of her skin more than I did with mine.
photos by: Mike Vidales