Sunny Saturdays

Sunny Day by Ali Taylor


For some reason, a contingent of parents persist in thinking that they, and their children, don’t need to use sunscreen when camping.


I actually knew a girl whose parents bought her outfits to match the 7 colors of skin cancer creams she used on her face year-round (no ‘skin tone’ colors had been invented/approved yet). I can’t even imagine how awful her classmates were to her in middle school. Great girl, and she lived!

I’ll admit I, like all kids, was a bit of a little snot and didn’t like the feel of sunscreen and couldn’t understand why it mattered. However, my parents were actually parenting, so made me use it and sometimes even had me wear a hat – especially on the longer hikes.

Added note: I grew up doing all day hikes. Quite a number of them were actually just us walking to where we need to go, but calling it hiking made it an adventure.

Anyway, use sunscreen and (maybe) save your life.



If you have tactile issues: I feel your annoyance and general, yet localized, itchiness.

Sunscreens: try the lotions and the sprays. You may prefer one to the other. I’ve found that the scented ones feel more oily, so I stick the more plain types. My absolute favorite is No Ad, but my sister can’t stand the feel of it – and I can’t stand the residue of hers either.

Hats: just keep trying. Yes, you need a wide brim, and try to get one without the little metal bit at the top. Different weights, fabrics, and cuts can cause different reactions, so keep plugging away. If you find one you can stand, buy 3. One to use, one to lose, and one for when the first breaks down.




Contrary to the nonsense some people spout, the SPF rating does matter. Anything under 30 is a joke and waste of money.

In the old rating style (since they inflated all the numbers for reasons I still can’t find the logic in), a 40 was useable and fairly cheap. You just needed to lightly reapply every hour or so, and heavily every 3.

In the new rating system, use the highest rating number you can find as what’s available varies by region.

And don’t forget about the sunscreen lip balm. — If your kids tend to chew their lip, it might make them slightly nauseous, so explain to them that they need to not get it in their mouths.



Waterproof, or water resistant as they call it now to avoid being sued, sunscreen is really the only type you should be looking for.

Humans sweat, so using a product that is going to literally slide off your skin after a few minutes is pointless.

Yes, it can be slightly more oily at first, but I think it actually dries/absorbs just as quickly.



Whatever kind you choose, just use sunscreen. Your skin, and any future oncologists, will thank you.

And hey, did you know that sunscreen also helps you looking younger longer?

See, no reason to not use it.

Disagree? Leave a comment!



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I'm (now) an Affiliate, who blogs about the materials, gear and supplies needed for living in a tent and long term camping: http://longtermcamping.siterubix.com I also enjoy reading and sci-fi in all its many forms.

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