I am a super-white person. I have a history of severe sunburns dating back to the late 1970s. Skin cancer (I just typed Sun cancer twice) is a certainty in my future, and if that doesn't get me it just means something else got me first. So it is a must that I slather myself up against the onslaught of the sun, and I insist on my family members doing it, too.
I am picky about my sunscreen. It has to be effective, of course, but I can't stand it if it feels icky when it's on. I have a sensitive body chemistry, I guess; I tend to be allergic to lots of things, and even stuff that I'm not allergic to drives me crazy if it has a strong odor or cloying texture. I am always on the lookout for better sunscreen that gets the job done with as little to indicate that it is there as possible.
Little Man has apparently inherited both my tendency to burn and my sensitivity to personal hygiene products. One day at a birthday party on a somewhat cloudy day I didn't slather the kids up because we were mostly in the shade, and everyone was fine except Little Man, whose back looked like the proverbial lobster. I cried for days that I had let that happen to him.
When the Parentbloggers asked for someone to try out a line of performance sunscreen products in a speedy way, I knew that was a job for Fishfamily. The kind folks at KINeSYS sent us four different products: SPF 30 oil-free and alcohol-free PABA-free UVA/UVB protection performance sunscreen in mango scent; SPF 30 oil-free and alcohol-free Kids cream sunscreen with titanium dioxide; Kids Funscreen SPF 30 spray-on sunscreen; and SPF 30 Sun Protection Stick. We set about trying them at once.
All the sunscreens are water and sweat resistant, and all had to be applied 30 minutes before going out and re-applied after two hours. The sprays are both pump sprays, and go on nice and light and easy, much easier than some of the continuous spray sunscreens I've used before. The creme spreads on nice and light, too, but I am lazy, so therefore I preferred the sprays. The sprays did have a bit of overspray, though, so we learned quickly to spray them outside to cut down on the mess/cloud of sunscreen. The stick for lips, ears, and face was really nice, it works like a glue stick with less mess, but it was a bit of a challenge to use on ears, which aren't as rigid and unyielding as noses and faces.
All the sunscreens worked as advertised without being icky. The mango scent of the adult spray wasn't overpowering, just a nice, light scent.
I did have a couple of issues with the sunscreens, though. One is that you must make sure that your spray bottles are stored upright. I had the small bottle of kids spray in my purse, and it leaked all over the inside of my purse. The bottle wasn't unscrewed or anything, it just had an issue. I had a problem with the creme sunscreen in deciding how much to use - the sprays are much easier to keep from using too much or too little. The sunscreens are a bit pricey, too, but this may be balanced over time with the number of uses you get. We've been using it quite a lot for two weeks and still have plenty left.
I do have to wonder about the mango fragrance. I mentioned in one of my recent posts about an apparent bug infestation. I wonder if we are seeing a bunch more bug bites due to the sunscreens, because thats the only thing that has changed around here and we are definitely seeing more bug bites than usual. I will test this further by not using this sunscreen for a week or so and see if we get fewer bites.
All in all, I thought the KINeSYS performance sunscreens performed admirably without being icky, and I will certain use them again in the future if they don't turn out to attract the insects. Maybe a product that incorporates an insect repellent would be a good addition to their product line.