None of us wants our baby to get sunburn. Not only is sunburn painful but even more seriously, just one case of bad sunburn increases our baby’s risk of getting skin cancer later on. The bad thing about sunscreens is that many of them can be very toxic, so we need to use caution when using sunscreen on our baby’s sensitive skin.
Some common ingredients found in sunscreens are suspected carcinogens. For example, triethanolamine, diethanolamine (TEA, DEA), padimate-o, octyl dimethyl PABA, benzophenone, oxybenzone, homosalate, salicylates and parabens.
Also disturbing is that many commonly used sunscreens contain chemicals that have estrogenic actions. What does that mean? It means that it can interfere with normal sexual development and can cause reproductive problems. Some studies have also shown that chemicals found in sunscreens can be absorbed into the bloodstream.
The really funny part is that all this chemical soup is not even regulated. The FDA has no strict standards for sunscreen. Among other things, a sunscreen can claim to be “broad spectrum” when it’s not.
Natural Sunscreen for Baby
Thankfully there are sunscreens on the market that are safer for our baby. Zinc oxide is a mineral that provides complete UVB and UVA protection. It also has anti-inflammatory properties and is considered a safe sunscreen. Another natural ingredient used in safer sunscreens is titanium dioxide.
The Environmental Protection Agency recently issued a report with some recommendations. Among them were two sunscreens with more natural ingredients for baby: California Baby SPF 30 + Sunblock Stick With No Added Fragrance and California Baby SPF 18 Everyday/Year-Round
Since buying a safer sunscreen for baby is just as simple as buying one with questionable ingredients, why not go for the safer product?