Teach Kids Healthy Skin Care Habits This Summer

As a mom I have learned that my children are watching and listening, even when I don’t think they are. They are listening to conversations I have with other adults, they are watching how I treat people when we are out and about and they are watching the things that I do. They are not only paying attention but they are learning from me. One thing I want them to teach them through my actions is the importance of taking care of our skin by putting sunscreen on when we are going to be outside. Thanks to Neutrogena for sponsoring this conversation about the importance of being a good role model when it comes to skin care.

Skin cancer is one of the most preventable cancers, yet it continues to be an epidemic with more than 350 Americans being diagnosed with skin cancer every hour. Making smart choices about sunscreen is one of the most important decisions people can make when it comes to preventing skin cancer.

Studies show that kids are actually more likely to adopt healthy habits, like applying sunscreen, if they see their moms applying it on themselves. I think as moms we have a tendency to make sure our children are set and then worry about ourselves but we need to remember to make time for our self care as well. It’s important to apply our sunscreen on in front of our kids, before helping them apply it on themselves. I like to walk through what I’m doing and why as well (I think it’s the preschool teacher in me). I’ll say “oh I better put sunscreen on because I don’t want to get burned!” So your kids see you putting it on and they hear you talking about why you are putting it on which I think makes double the impact than if you just talk about how important it is.

When choosing sunscreens this summer, here are some things to keep in mind as you make choices about sun protection and skin cancer prevention:

  • Don’t just rely on sunscreen rankings or reports, speak with your dermatologist for information on the best sunscreen choices for you.
  • Make sure sunscreen labels list UVA and UVB (or broad spectrum) protection and a minimum of SPF 30. Consider using SPF 50+ if you are outdoors for an extended period.
  • Choose the formulation – stick, lotion or spray – that is the product you and your family will be most likely to regularly use.
  • Start sun protection early in life. Just 1-2 severe sunburns can increase the risk of melanoma later in life by 40 percent.

A great brand that we like to use is Neutrogena. They have a spectrum of different products, from sticks to sprays to lotions. I prefer to put lotion on myself and spray on the boys. The stick sunscreen is great for faces and easy to take with on the go. They also have a variety of SPF, from 30 to 100, to protect every skin type during every summer situation.

How do you get your kids to apply sunscreen with you? I’d love to hear how you set healthy examples for your kids! Check out the #MimicMommy hashtag on social media for more stories and tips!