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sun safety

sun safety

Sun safety

By environment, family, Health, Playing, Safety, Summer, sun safety

Take extra care to protect babies and children in the sun. Their skin is much more sensitive than adult skin, and damage caused by repeated exposure to sunlight could lead to skin cancer developing in later life.

Children aged under six months should be kept out of direct strong sunlight.

From March to October in the UK, children should:
• Cover up with suitable clothing.
• Spend time in the shade, particularly from 11am to 3pm.
• Wear at least SPF30 sunscreen.

Apply sunscreen to areas not protected by clothing, such as the face, ears, feet and backs of hands.

To ensure they get enough vitamin D, all children under five are advised to take vitamin D supplements.

When buying sunscreen, the label should have:
• A sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30 to protect against UVB
• At least 4-star UVA protection
• UVA protection can also be indicated by the letters ‘UVA’ in a circle, which indicates that it meets the EU standard.

What are the SPF and star rating?
The sun protection factor, or SPF, is a measure of the amount of ultraviolet B radiation (UVB) protection.

SPFs are rated on a scale of two to 50+ based on the level of protection they offer, with 50+ offering the strongest form of UVB protection.

The star rating measures the amount of ultraviolet A radiation (UVA) protection. You should see a star rating of up to five stars on UK sunscreens. The higher the star rating, the better. Sunscreens that offer both UVA and UVB protection are sometimes called broad spectrum.

How to apply sunscreen
Most people do not apply enough sunscreen. As a guide, adults should aim to apply around six to eight teaspoons of sunscreen if you’re covering your entire body.

If sunscreen is applied too thinly, the amount of protection it gives is reduced. If you’re worried you might not be applying enough SPF30, you could use a sunscreen with a higher SPF.

If you plan to be out in the sun long enough to risk burning, sunscreen needs to be applied at least twice:
• 30 minutes before going out.
• Just before going out.
• Sunscreen should be applied to all exposed skin, including the face, neck and ears, and head if you have thinning or no hair, but a wide-brimmed hat is better protection.

Sunscreen needs to be reapplied liberally and frequently, and according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

This includes applying it straight after you have been in water, even if it’s ‘water resistant’, and after towel drying, sweating or when it may have rubbed off.

It’s also recommended to reapply sunscreen every two hours, as the sun can dry it off your skin.

Taken from

sun safety

Are children more susceptible to the sun in water?

By Playing, Safety, Sport, sun safety, swimming

How to keep them safe, according to an expert

As summer rolls around, parents love seeing their children soak up the sunshine; after all, it finally tears them away from their screens. Although, this does give rise to one prominent concern: sun safety. Children’s skin is notoriously susceptible to the sun and, according to experts, they’re even more vulnerable in the water – is this true and, most importantly, how can we keep them safe?

Children’s skin is more vulnerable because its natural defence mechanisms aren’t fully developed, meaning a staggering 80% of total lifetime sun exposure takes place before the age of 18. Ultimately, children are at a higher risk of sun and eye damage resulting from UV rays, whilst being in the water enhances these risks. Why? Firstly, water has an obvious cooling effect; as your children have fun in the sea or swimming pool, they won’t feel like they’re burning. Meanwhile, reflective surfaces (e.g., pool tiles, inflatables) can amplify UV rays. If your child is set to be in the water, you must understand how you can keep them safe.

Thankfully, we have an ideal expert on hand to help ensure that children stay safe in the sun – and water – this summer. Danny Anderson is the owner of Aqua Splash, a business comprising of two incredible, water-based assault courses in Essex. As Danny welcomes thousands of excited children to this water-based activity every year, he is uniquely familiar with the risks that sun exposure can pose, including the proactive steps we can take.

To help you stay on the right track, he’s sharing his top tips:

1. Always remember to ‘use an ounce before leaving the house’.
A helpful rule of thumb when it comes to using sun cream is ‘Use an ounce before leaving the house’. By using this quantity (roughly), and allowing it to soak in for 30 minutes before going outside, you’ll be laying the right foundations. Most people reportedly use less than half this amount, as they severely underestimate how much sun cream is needed; make sure your little one is thoroughly covered.

2. Re-apply every two hours (minimum).
Whilst your children might not be happy to leave the pool and reapply their sun cream, it’s incredibly important that they do. As a minimum, you should re-apply every two hours; if your child is climbing inflatables or going down flumes, re-applying even more regularly is ideal.

3. Never go below SPF 30.
Arguably the most important thing to get right when it comes to skin protection is the SPF factor behind the sun cream you’re using; if this isn’t sufficient, it simply won’t fulfil its purpose.

When choosing sun cream for your children, always opt for SPF 30+ at the very least; if you can find a higher SPF, do! The higher the factor, the better protection your cream will provide.

4. Don’t forget the cream’s UVA rating.
Although your sun cream’s SPF factor is vital, it’s not the only important thing you ought to consider. Beyond this, it’s also crucial that you evaluate its UVA rating; more specifically, that you ensure the cream’s UVA rating is 4 or 5 stars – any less and you simply can’t rely
on its resilience.

Thankfully, creams with strong UVA ratings aren’t difficult to find. Almost all of the biggest brands on today’s market, including Nivea for example, boast 5-star UVA-rated creams – if you do your homework, you can find the perfect cream for you.

5. Consider hats and T-shirts.
As children are particularly vulnerable to sun damage, consider having yours wear hats and t-shirts whilst they play in the water. This way, you won’t need to worry about them burning, especially in the areas which are most susceptible (their shoulders and hair line).

Enjoying the sun without encountering any damage is possible, even when you’re excitedly climbing water-based inflatables! You just need to understand how much sun cream you should be applying and how regularly you ought to be re-applying, whilst considering the components of the cream itself.

For more information about Aqua Splash, visit


Sun creams – the confusion

By Education, environment, Health, Safety, Summer, sun safety
by Green People, ethical organic skin care and beauty product experts

We all know the importance of using sun protection, but a recent survey by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society shows that there is huge confusion around labelling on sun creams, with a significant percentage of the public unaware how much protection their sun creams offer.

The survey of 2,000 UK adults found that one in five was unaware that the SPF rating of a sun cream does not offer protection against all sun damage.

Only 8% of people surveyed knew that the SPF rating of a sun cream only refers to the protection from UVB radiation (the rays that burn), meaning that 92% of people had no idea that SPF ratings offer no indication of UVA protection.

What are UVA rays?
UVA rays cause long-term cell damage in the deeper layers of the skin and are the main cause of premature skin ageing and wrinkles.

UVA rays can still cause damage even if your skin hasn’t gone red and burned; this means that whilst you may believe you are getting good protection from your sun cream, your skin may still be experiencing damage.

To maintain high protection from both UVA and UVB rays it is more important to apply regularly and liberally than to choose a very high SPF sun cream.

Cancer Research recommends that two tablespoons of sun cream is applied every 2 hours; it is also advised that people avoid direct sun exposure between the hours of 11:00 and 15:00 when the sun’s harmful rays are strongest.

Recent media coverage about UVA protection advised the public to check the ‘star’ rating of their sun cream, however the star system is not the only way to tell if a product offers protection against UVA rays.

The European Cosmetics Association COLIPA has designed a symbol to indicate whether products offer UVA protection in line with the recommendations of the European Commission. This symbol, which consists of the letters UVA inside a circle, is used to confirm that products offer UVA protection in line with these recommendations.

How high is high enough?
There can be a tendency for people who use very high factor sun creams of SPF50 and above to reapply less frequently and stay in the sun longer than when they use lower factor sun lotions. This can dramatically increase your risk of sun damage because in order to get good UVA defence, you must regularly top up your protection no matter what the SPF factor.

All Green People sun lotions offer broad-spectrum UVA and UVB protection and are suitable for sensitive skin and those prone to prickly heat.