If you're like most moms, it's hard to stay on top of sunscreen application during the summer, even though you know you should. It's so easy to forget the lotion at home, or to fail to lather up your kid before he cannonballs into the water and is lost to "just one more round" of sharks and minnows, and then you've got a whiny lobster for a child the following day.
But good news, a new trend has got your back.
Several amusement parks, public pools, and other family hot spots are combating the dangers of UV damage to the skin by supplying guests with free sunscreen. Some places issue the sunscreen in tabletop pumps, while others make it available in dispensers similar to those you may find filled with hand sanitizer at the gym.
Not only are these stations great if you forget or run out of sunscreen (and because they're free), but they also serve as visual reminders to reapply. Reapplication is recommended at least every two hours, more often if kids are wet with water or sweat (hint: they will be; it's summer).
Cancer centers and recreation departments in melanoma-prone states like Arizona and Indiana have led this initiative with the installation of sunscreen dispensers at public parks and swimming pools, zoos, and sporting arenas like the Indiana University Tennis Center and the Arizona Diamondback's baseball stadium. The following theme parks and water parks have also followed suit in providing free sunscreen for their guests:
Alabama Splash Adventure – Bessemer, AL
Discovery Cove – Orlando, FL
Holiday World & Splashin' Safari – Santa Claus, IN
Beech Bend Park & Splash Lagoon – Bowling Green, KY
Kentucky Kingdom and Hurricane Bay – Louisville, KY
Splash Zone Water Park – Wildwood, NJ
Hershey Park – Hershey, PA
Even some Carnival Cruise Lines ships have hopped aboard the trend, distributing free samples of sunscreen to passengers as well as placing gallon pump containers of the protective lotion throughout the outdoor deck.
Know of any more family-friendly places helping to keep your kids safe during the sunny season? Help us add to the list!
How to Apply Sunscreen to Your Baby
Image: Boy on towel via Shutterstock