Can I Use My Child's Sunscreen

Episode #78 / Sep 1, 2009
When you have children or you're visiting a house of someone who does, during the summer there's usually children's sunscreen laying around. Dr. Schultz will let you know whether or not kids sunscreen is also effective for adults.
Dawn McDowell on September 9, 2009 at 4:41am

My thought about sunscreen for children or babies is that the screens/blocks might be placed into a formulation that is gentler than the standard screens (many of them advertise this, anyway). Therefore, if you have sensitive skin or break out from regular sunscreens, the ones made for babies and little kids might be worth trying. I would be interested in hearing the doctor's opinion on this aspect, even though the SPF protection is obviously no different.

Neal Schultz, M.D. on September 18, 2009 at 6:30pm

@Dawn: I agree that anything formulated for babies and children’s skin is apt to be very gentle, but I would want to believe that sunscreens formulated for adults with normal skin would also be gentle since they also are tested for potential irritancy. It then follows that if you have sensitive skin or get "rashy" (as opposed to acne) breakouts from some adult sunscreens, then sunscreens for children would seem appropriate. But the newer Chem-Free sunscreens (whether for children or adults) are very gentle and are also appropriate for sensitive skin.