Spraying Sunscreen on Your Kids Could Be the Worst Thing You Do This Summer

applying sunscreen to childHow do you pick the sunscreen you're going to use on your kids? If you go for convenience every time, you might want to rethink your summertime routine! Consumer Reports has come out to warn parents who are using popular spray sunscreens to put those cans down immediately ... and don't pick 'em back up!

The watchdog isn't the first to tell parents to steer clear of the products. The American Academy of Dermatology has been saying it for years. And the Environmental Working Group has also issued warnings about the sprays that tend to be a little easier on parents when it comes to applying sunscreen to wiggling toddlers. So what's different about the Consumer Reports warning?

Well, for starters, they're following up on an announcement last month from the Food and Drug Administration that the government is finally taking a look at possible dangers from the sprays. What's more, Consumer Reports has actually removed a sunscreen from its well-regarded safe list because of the concerns over what chemicals kids are breathing in when their parents use a spray.

More From The Stir: Putting Sunscreen on a Toddler Is Worse Than Having a Root Canal

Hello, Moms and Dads, how much more warning do you need to can the cans of this stuff?

Spraying down a child is much more convenient than having to hold down a squirmer who is screaming bloody murder because you're "torturing" them with sunscreen. And hey, you get to keep your hands clean!

But just as we've seen with rear-facing car seats, sometimes the convenience just isn't worth it ... not when it puts our kids at risk.

Don't want to worry about what you're putting on your kids when they go out in the sun? Check the Environmental Working Group's annual safe sunscreen list for something non-toxic for your kids' skin.

And if you absolutely must use one of the sprays, the folks at Consumer Reports suggest spraying it into your hands, then rubbing the sunscreen into your children's skin.

What kind of sunscreen do you use? A spray? A stick? A lotion?


Image © iStock.com/jtyler



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youth... youthfulsoul

I don't understand why it took a study to realize breathing in a cloud of chemical sunscreen is bad! I never buy the crap and get so annoyed when I breathe it in from some dummy next to me saturating themselves in it.

I buy lotion and hold my breath or put a towel over my face if I'm suddently surrounded by a cloud of it from someone near by.

nonmember avatar krystian


Shut up.

I buy the spray and rub it in my child's body.

The lotion doesn't work for her. I tried to lotion, and she got 2nd degree sun burn.

nonmember avatar Kali

I dislike them for that reason, but as a single mom of a young child, it is the only way I can get sunscreen on my own back. Plus, my daughter's childcare requires sprays (legal protection to prevent any misconstruing of a teacher touching a child). For those reasons, I purchased some small masks from the hardware store that we put on her to keep her from breathing in the fumes and it really helps!

youth... youthfulsoul

Krystian:  Clearly you are the reason they need studies like this. Obviously lacking common sense.

nonmember avatar happymamaxo

@ youthfulsoul you're the mom everyone hates just a big ball of judgement.

How about you don't worry what other moms use on their kids, there not yours. And what works for one mom doesn't always work for others. They know what's best for their children, not you.

Erin Anne

Spray is no different than lotion in regards to coverage @Krystian.... I dont get it. You still need to re-apply both frequently to avoid burning your child.... even the waterproof ones are not waterproof for long. I buy the liquid spray on kind from Aubrey and All Terrain. Those work great if anyone is looking to avoid the type in cans and avoid the chemicals as well. 

Railr... RailroadGirl

@Krystain on another story you said you always keep your eyes on your kids if that's the case how did your child get 2nd degree burns?

nonmember avatar Natalia

So breathing in toxic sunscreen spray is damaging but putting same toxic sunscreen on the skin where it absorbs and goes straight to the blood stream is Ok? It is not the spray that is the problem but the toxicity of sunscreen in general. Read the label!

Lucki... Luckicharmz

I've used the spray for 5 years with no issues. Angle the can away from the face and don't spray it in windy areas, it's common sense. For the face I spray it in my hands and rub it in.

nonmember avatar georga

It is sunscreen ! I don't believe any of you pack face masks or even cover with a towel. Why? Because you would look weird in public. Wuth your one upping here I DOUBT you would taint your reputation .

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