Sun Safety Tips for Infants and Toddlers

Babies under 6 months:
Avoid direct sun exposure and dress infants in lightweight long pants, long-sleeved shirts, and brimmed hats that shade the face and cover the ears and neck. When adequate clothing and shade are not available, apply a small amount of child-safe sunscreen (SPF 15 or higher) to exposed skin.

Isis Tip: Use a wipe style infant sunscreen for your baby�s face �it�s hard to keep liquid sunscreen away from your baby�s eyes. Isis Picks: MD Moms Baby Silk Sunscreen Wipes, iPlay Brim Sun Hats & Sunglasses

Isis Tip: Babies get very hot in infant car seats. Take your baby out when possible to let air circulate around your baby�s head, neck and back, and dab a little water on exposed skin to help him cool off. Isis Picks: UPPAbaby Bubble 3 in 1 car seat protector with SPF 50+. (For stroller use.)

Older babies and toddlers:
Cover up with a hat, sunglasses that block UV rays and tight-weave cotton clothing. Apply sunscreen 30 minutes prior to outdoor play, and reapply every two hours or after swimming or sweating. Find shaded areas for outdoor play.

Isis Tip: Metal clips and buckles on car seats can get very hot �check these parts with your hand prior to buckling your toddler in the car. Drape a white towel over the car seat when the car is parked to reflect heat away from the seat.

Isis Tip: Sunscreen wipes and sticks are available for quick and easy application of lotion for you and your child when on-the-go. Isis Picks: MD Moms Baby Silk Sunscreen Wipes, California Baby Sunblock Stick, iPlay Brim Sun Hats & Sunglasses

For more information and references,see the American Academy of Pediatrics website.


Physical vs. Chemical Sunscreen: Know the Difference

From our friends, the MD Moms

Experts recommend the application of 1oz of typical liquid sunscreen to achieve the stated sun protection factor. Learn about the differences between a physical and chemical sunscreen:

A Physical Sunscreen:

. Natural active ingredients Zinc Oxide & Titanium Dioxide (natural minerals)
. Forms a monolayer that sits on surface of skin and deflects sun�s rays
. Far less risk of irritation/allergic reaction due to non-absorption
. Provides broad spectrum protection from UVA and UVB rays
. Immediately active protection upon application
. Costly and hard-to-obtain premium raw materials

A Chemical Sunscreen:

. Active ingredients like PABA, Parsol Benzophenones, Cinnamates, Salicylates
. Allows UV rays to be absorbed into lower layers of the skin where they are then �dispersed�
. Far greater risk of irritation/allergies due to absorption into the skin
. May not provide critical broad spectrum protection
. Requires 20 minutes to activate, leaving a critical window of opportunity for damage
. Cheap and widely accessible raw materials

For more information, ask a Center Associate about our MD Moms products or visit

P.S. Looking for swimsuits and swim diapers? We�ve got �em, in store and online!

About Isis Parenting

Isis Parenting has a diverse team of staff experts in pregnancy, newborn care, safety, child development, breastfeeding, fitness and nutrition and more.

2 Responses to Sun Safety Tips for Infants and Toddlers
  1. Helena Anderson
    May 19, 2010 | 12:34 pm

    Thanks for the tips! I have a 3 month old and it was easy to bundle her up when it was cold, and I was just wondering how to care for her in the heat. Thanks very much!

  2. Jen LF
    May 19, 2010 | 3:32 pm

    Any tips on how to get little ones to leave their hats on? My 16 month old tolerates it for about 15 minutes, then she decides it would be much more fun to take it off! :)

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