Sun Safe Playtimes

One of the best bits about being at school is playtime; fun with friends out in the fresh air. But it’s also a time when children are exposed to the sun’s harmful rays.

Take a look at some sobering facts:

  • Skin cancer is now one of the biggest cancer killers in 15-34 year olds.
  • Sunburn in childhood can more than double a person’s chance of developing melanoma in later life
  • Over exposure to UV is responsible for 86% of all skin cancer cases and 4 out of every 5 melanoma deaths.
  • There are more deaths in the UK from skin cancer each year than Australia – the UV capital of the world.

NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) guidelines for skin cancer prevention insist that children should never be allowed to burn and should be made aware of how important it is to protect their skin.

UV is a known carcinogen and damage from UV is accumulative and irreparable. This means burning as a child can dramatically increase a person’s risk of developing skin cancer in later life. With peak UV hours between 11am and 3pm, when children are most likely to be playing out, it’s imperative to ensure that they are adequately protected.

With all this information taken into account, it becomes clear that a good sunscreen is a must when sending our children out into the sun. We’ve picked out some of the best sunscreens on the market, suitable for all kinds of skin!

For children:


Vichy IDÉAL SOLEIL Anti Sand Kids SPF 50

With broad spectrum UVA and UVB filters to absorb the sun’s radiation and reflect the rays away from the skin. Enriched with Vichy Mineralizing Water, Ideal Soleil Anti-Sand for Children helps to hydrate skin and fight against free radicals caused by exposure to the sun. Non-sticky and pleasant to apply, it helps ensure a dry finish allowing sand to be easily brushed off skin and not stick. In the form of a mist, this sunscreen is easy to apply and fast to sink in. It also promises to be water resistant.

For babies:


Garner Baby In The Shade SPF 50+

You know to keep little ones out of direct sunlight, but make sure they’re protected in the shade with our first ultra-soft, high protection sun cream for babies. Ambre Solaire’s baby sun cream has a hypoallergenic formula that’s free of perfume and parabens, specially developed for a baby’s delicate, sensitive skin. The patented formula is enriched with a mineral filter for advanced protection against damaging UVA and UVB rays. Let Garnier’s baby sun lotion with SPF 50+ put your mind at rest while shading infants from the sun.

For sensitive skin:


Ultrasound SPF 30 Family Ultra Sensitive Sun Cream

Sensitive Skin Ultrasun Family 30 delivers very high all day protection (UVA 93% and UVB SPF30) with just one application per day. Its super sensitive formulation is ideal for very sensitive and children’s skin and helps to prevent ‘prickly heat’ reactions. It provides extra protection for vulnerable areas such as shins, noses, shoulders etc. it is free from oils, emulsifiers and perfume reducing the risk of allergy and making it especially suitable for sensitive skins. This sunscreen also promises to be non-greasy, water-resistant and easy to use.

For the face:


Kiel’s Ultra-Light Daily UV Defense Sunscreen SPF50 PA+++

Sometimes sunscreens typically made for all over the body, can feel heavy and leave a white cast on the face. Kiehl’s daily, ultra-light formula intensely moisturises the skin and utilises a high level of sun filters Mexory SX and Mexoryl XI, to provide the skin with effective UVA and UVB broad-spectrum sunscreen protection. This moisturizing oil-free lotion helps protect against the appearance of dark spots and wrinkles and is also suitable for sensitive skin.

Further protection:

An additional way to protect your child in the sun, is with some protective headgear – a legionnaire-style safari cap to shade the face, ears and back of the neck.

Sun safety - safari hat child.jpg

“The safari caps are practical come in bright, fun colours which mean they’re great for play out of school too.” 

Check out http://www.yourschooluniform.com/products/view/safari-cap in five different colours.  They retail at £3.95 each.


Creepy House – Essex Libraries’ Summer Reading Challenge 2013

????????????This summer, Essex Libraries will open the door of the Creepy House. Children can visit any Essex Library during the holidays to pick up a Creepy House folder and choose some exciting stories to start them on their spine–tingling journey!

To unlock the secrets of the house, all children need to do is read six books. There are stickers to collect along the way and some of them are smelly! Children who read six books will receive a medal and everyone will receive a certificate.

Children of any age can take part in the Summer Reading Challenge, regardless of reading ability.  Children who can’t read independently can share books with families or carers. Creepy House will be running in all Essex Libraries from Saturday 20th July to Monday 2nd September with children able to complete and collect their medals until 7th September.

There will be some early joining days where you can get your Creepy House before the rush, when the schools break up!  Check with your local library to see if there are some creepy adventures happening from the 13th July. Mobile libraries will start the Summer Reading Challenge from early July.

Young people aged 10 and over are invited to take part in a separate challenge called Mystery Street, where some strange things have been happening. They will use clues, read books, create a story and answer some information questions to earn rewards.


Posted by Amy Moylan