We tested 8 baby after-sun creams and found cyclopentasiloxane in one, a suspected endocrine disruptor. An ingredient that should be avoided in baby products. Here are the cleanest ones with the greatest presence of natural emollients
The sea, the swimming pool or the mountains, in the summer, when you have small children, the password is to pay watch out for sunburn. In addition to the classic recommendations – i.e. not to expose the little ones to the sun during the hottest hours – parents naturally come to the rescue products designed specifically to protect delicate skin of babies and children from grape rays and their effects, such as sunscreens or after sun. The latter are particularly important for soothing even minor burns and moisturizing the skin.
In this month’s newsstand issue, we help you make a choice compare 8 after-sun productsin search of the one most compatible with such delicate skin.
The brands we tested are among the most important on the market: Avéne, Bionike, Chicco, Equilibra, Helan, Risflager, Omia, Mustela
Although exposure to sunlight is also very important for the little ones, to help them assimilate vitamin D, it is
effects, especially in summer, can also be harmful. Creams, milk or after-sun sprays help restore the skin’s balance changed by the sun, counteracts the effect of free radicals and gives freshness to the skin. This is why they are very important not only for children, but also for adults: the heat and reactions of grape rays stress the skin, which must regenerate itself using products that guarantee real benefits. Applying a protective cream first, and then an after sun, helps maintain the skin’s firmness and restore the hydrolipidic film, which prevents the skin from flaking, but also helps to counteract dehydration, oxidative stress and the formation of free radicals. As the word itself suggests, after sun should be applied after sun exposure, for example after a day at the beach, a hike in the mountains or a swim in the river or pool. Thanks to the active ingredients and decongestants contained in the formulations – e.g calendula, aloe vera, chamomile – this cream is much more effective for children than a normal moisturizer.
The best after sun? Quickly absorbed
There are obviously different types: i cream, in sprayeven in the form of shampoo and shower gel which is obviously to be used during the bath. In general, however, the best products to choose are undoubtedly those that have a formulation fast absorptionmore delicate textures, suitable for sensitive or allergic skin, e.g free of parabens or perfume. For children, who often cannot bear to spend whole minutes smeared with creams, you can choose a shower gel with emollient properties: whether you choose a cream or a cleanser, this is actually the aspect that we cannot underestimate .
Aloe vera, calendula flowers, sweet almonds, jojoba, chamomile and rice starch are the ingredients that we should always look for on the label. Maybe make sure they appear first among the ingredients to make sure it’s not an insignificant addition, just good to brag about on the label.
What we found in the 8 bottles
We compared the composition of 8 after sun creams. With the exception of Avéne, which chose a “format” that suits the whole family, the other 7 lotions are specially designed for the little ones.
The main purpose of the after sun cream is to moisturize stressed skin after a day of sun and sea. In order for it to do this, there must be a good amount of emollients in the composition, preferably natural. The molecules that we have listed in the table are the ones that should (preferably) appear on the label, preferably among the first ingredients (to ensure that it is a significant addition). Just take a look at the table to understand that in almost all cases the manufacturers predict at least two (with the exception of Avéne). The best, such as Omia and Equilibra, even in “generous” amounts.
Perfume and allergenic substances
Even perfume and allergenic substances are unfortunately enough. The latter is included in a list of 26 perfumed molecules considered allergenic, which, according to the law, must be indicated on the label when their presence exceeds 0.001% in “leave on” products (which remain on the skin for a long time) and 0.01 % in rinse products.
Hormone disrupting drugs
Only one cream, Bionike, contains an endocrine disruptor, substances of greatest concern in products intended for children. As explained by the Higher Institute of Health, they can compromise the reproductive and developmental health of adolescents and children. The damage is confirmed by medical research that indicates that more exposed people are at greater risk of diseases related to development or metabolism.
The list of unwelcome ingredients found in these lotions is far too long. They range from Peg, derived from petroleum, whose production process can pose a risk to the health of the skin, to paraffin, which represents the economic alternative to natural oils and fats to achieve an emollient function.
Two ingredients that we have included on the “unwelcome” list are also derived from oil: isododecane and isohexadecane.
Be aware of the presence of silicone derivatives (such as dimethicone), two widely used preservatives (although partially prohibited, in aerosols) such as dehydroacetic acid and dehydroacetate and triethanolamine (buffering agent that allows you to adjust the pH of the product formula so that it approaches say that of the skin). Let’s not forget the environment and when we can, we choose cosmetics that do not contain substances capable of harming it, such as disodium edta, whose ability to bind to (heavy) metals and calcium makes it harmful to the ecosystem.