sunscreen for dark skinned kiddos? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 12 Old 04-04-2008, 03:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Any suggestions on a good sunscreen as we head into warmer months?
I've used a zinc oxide based product (CA Baby) in the past, and it just makes DS look ghostly! (And makes me feel like people think I'm trying to make him white or something.)
On a related topic - I was following the hair discussion and have started using coconut oil in DS's hair and I love it! But, a friend mentioned that if you use a product that's not designed for hair, it doesn't have sunscreen and the hair will actually *cook*! (Duh - cooking oil! ) So, when I get a body/face sunscreen for DS, I'll just rub it through his hair at the same time - so I'd like something that would work for that purpose.
Thanks much!
Cyndi
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#2 of 12 Old 04-04-2008, 04:11 PM
 
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As an AA woman, I've always used higher sun protection as my mom has lupus and sensitivity to the sun. With that said, I'd recommend using a sunscreen for kids at 40-55 range. I tend to use organic formulas. For hair products, I use organic jojoba oil on my hair (kinky loose curls) which works great. You might also look at Carol's Daughter hair products. They're great and smell good too - all natural. HTH.
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#3 of 12 Old 04-04-2008, 08:17 PM
 
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I asked about this topic a while back and got no definitive response. I read that dark skin (I've got pretty dark skin) is equivalent to SPF50. I don't know how true this is . . . that being said, I live in an area where the winters are pretty dreary. I look forward to being out in the sun with my children and I know they need to absorb a lot of sunlight (for Vitamin D). Therefore, I don't do sunscreen at all. If I feel like it will be a particularly scorching day, I may do a sunscreen hat. But that is all. Actually, the fact that the AAP and virtually no one addresses the issue of sunscreen (recommendations, etc) for people of color is blatantly racist to me.

As for my hair, I use coconut oil but ONLY after I wash it. It is pointless to put oil on dry hair (for me). When I get in the sun, my hair will feel fried (very dry). So I oil it only when I wash it. Sometimes I will spritz it with water and then rub some jojoba oil through it. But I find that for my hair, oil without water is useless. And my hair is very tightly coiled. Nappy if you will.

Stay-at-home mom to 2 beautiful.busy.boisterous boys b. 08.17.05 & 12.29.08
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#4 of 12 Old 04-05-2008, 09:50 PM
 
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We use any natural formula I find.

My kids (biracial) NEVER burn though, even my dd who is really really light (amost as pale as me and I'm Irish)- we still use it though of course.

Mom of 3 sons and one daughter
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#5 of 12 Old 04-05-2008, 11:28 PM
 
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Don't be fooled into thinking that dark skin is safe from sun damage. It's not as vulnerable as fair skin but it is definitely still vulnerable. The best protection is no exposure-- i.e. hat and clothes that cover the skin. Sunscreen should be used in the highest SPF and applied liberally (at least 15 min before exposure) no matter what the color of the skin. With the ozone layer degrading, the sun is more dangerous than ever.
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#6 of 12 Old 04-06-2008, 05:59 PM
 
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I use an SPF 30---all natural but can't remember the name---on the kids and myself. I burn very easily, but the kids are nicely golden brown all the time. We pretty much just use it at the pool or if we'll be outside for a while. Otherwise, for general play I don't use it on myself or the kids. DD is a little darker than DS, but both get very noticeable tan lines. Especially DS, whose summer uniform is just shorts and flip flops.
For the hair--no advise really....will your LO wear a hat?
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#7 of 12 Old 04-07-2008, 12:01 AM
 
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I'm a believer in limiting exposure, so I go with sunhats, umbrellas/parasols, etc. I am very light and burn easily, so I can feel myself burning long before DS starts to get too much exposure. Though theoretically DH could stay in the sun longer than DS, DH just ins't outdoorsy enough for it to be an issue.

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#8 of 12 Old 04-08-2008, 03:17 AM
 
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We use Alba, which is considered "safe" by the EWG, Skin Deep, etc. It blends in quite nicely.

~ Robyn

Mom to Jackson, b. January 2006

and Cassandra, b. October 2011

 

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#9 of 12 Old 04-08-2008, 11:22 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meowee View Post
Don't be fooled into thinking that dark skin is safe from sun damage. It's not as vulnerable as fair skin but it is definitely still vulnerable. The best protection is no exposure-- i.e. hat and clothes that cover the skin. Sunscreen should be used in the highest SPF and applied liberally (at least 15 min before exposure) no matter what the color of the skin. With the ozone layer degrading, the sun is more dangerous than ever.
This doesn't make sense.

We need the sun . . . I know I feel 10 times better after having some sun exposure and being dark skinned means you would need more sunlight to make adequate vitamin D. Lighter skinned folks could probably do well with just a couple of minutes but . . . look at it this way, I never burn in the sun even in the hot Nigerian sun however and you won't find many people out there when the sun is highest. However, I will eventually burn as I learned a few summers ago on the beach in Florida. Still, slathering on SPF 50 million does not allow a dark skinned person to get what he/she needs from the sun especially if it's estimated that dark skin is already SPF50 . . . that puts one at risk for rickets, etc . . .

What is needed is definitive studies/data that estimate how much time in the sun is safe for darker skinned folks and perhaps some products that acknowledge that dark skinned people exist and have different needs than lighter skinned (White) people.

Stay-at-home mom to 2 beautiful.busy.boisterous boys b. 08.17.05 & 12.29.08
Nirvana is . . . the living happiness of a soul which is conscious of itself and conscious of having found its own abode in the heart of the Eternal. --Gandhi
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#10 of 12 Old 04-08-2008, 12:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Excellent advice! Thanks!
I found some nice sunblock (approx 30) at our local natural pharmacy that I'll try on DS and myself.

Rootzdawta - is jojoba oil a sun protectant?
Thanks!
Cyndi
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#11 of 12 Old 04-14-2008, 12:56 AM
 
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To make sure my biracial son gets enough sun, I only put sunscreen on him after we've already been in direct sunlight for a while, or I'll put it on before we go but not reapply. He has a pretty medium skin tone, and I know he could burn eventually but hasn't yet. My partner (who's dark skinned) thinks it's ridiculous to put sunscreen on him. Also, he wears an SPF 45 rash guard shirt with swim trunks.
Oh, and we use Alba sunscreens and like them a lot.
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#12 of 12 Old 04-14-2008, 02:26 AM
 
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We use Mustela SPF 55 and so far I've been happy with it.
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