Look inside the cupboards of most family kitchens and you’ll find sunscreen for kids. It’s a product that all good parents will have, as it’s not exactly a secret that it’s necessary for good skin health.
That said, kids – God love ‘em – don’t always play along, particularly as they’ve got important play they want to get on with. So, if you want to make things a little easier for yourself, keep reading as we take you a few ideas on how to get your kids interested in what you’re trying to do.
Have a Sunscreen Application Song Ready
Ask any good parent out there what the best thing you can do to make a mundane or chore-like activity – like applying sunscreen for kids – more fun and they’ll tell you that it’s all about grabbing their attention. Kids love routine too, so when you’re applying sunscreen, perhaps make a song up to accompany it – one they’ll learn has to be sung each time it goes on.
What this also does is slow things down, with each rub into the skin having to keep time with the pace of the song being sung. It’s great practice and makes it a fun activity they’ll want to engage with.
Frame It As Face Painting!
Vist your average school fare and you’ll often see a long queue at the face painting stall. That’s because kids just love being transformed into something or someone else. This can be harnessed to your benefit as a parent, as stick sunscreens can be used a little like body or face paints.
If you make it into a creative play situation, the child in question is much less likely to see it as a job to be avoided, rather than a step that they’ll absolutely not want to miss out on!
Make It a Race!
We’ll caveat this particular bit of advice by saying that while making the application of sunscreen for kids a race will encourage children to do the job quickly, you need to make them aware about the need to avoid the eyes. Don’t worry if there’s only one child and no one to race against, as it can easily be switched to being against the clock, with a countdown being used instead.
Let Them Do Your Sunscreen
Another great way to make sunscreen application a more enjoyable experience for your child or children is to make them feel involved. You can do this by rewarding them for sitting still while you’re doing theirs with a promise to let them do yours afterwards.
Sometimes that’s all it takes to get a small child engaged with what you’re trying to do and being subtle and inclusive this way sure beats yelling “sit still!”, as they’re not likely to comply.
The Reassurance of Knowing They’re Safe In the Sun
Ultimately, you buy sunscreen for kids so that you get the peace of mind that comes with knowing that they’re protected. And by being a little clever with your encouragement, you can get buy-in from your kids – who’ll then start to take responsibility for their own skin, rather than seeing it as something to be avoided.
If you can get to the point where you don’t have to ask them to apply it anymore, you know you’ve made it and that you’ve likely instilled a health-supporting behavior that will stay with them throughout their life or lives. Now, that’s something that’s worth working at.
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