Doctors say 80 percent of harmful sun exposure happens before age 18, and that it only takes two really bad sunburns to increase one’s chances of developing skin cancer later in life. (And yeah, we’re wincing as we recall our teenage days, slathering on tanning butter. You too?)
Now, we’ve seen toddler-sized, itty-bitty, polka-dotted bikinis in stores – and our colleagues at the Arizona Republic say they actually spotted string bikinis for 1-year-olds – but we’re relieved to report that more and more tots at our neighborhood pool have started wearing surf-style rash guards. These short-sleeved, lycra swim shirts block 97 percent of the UV rays, kinda like an SPF 150 sunscreen. If you’d like to follow suit, Body Glove, O’Neill and all the other surf and dive wear companies make them in adult and children’s sizes. The superman suit pictured here is by SunSmart and comes with a towel cape ($35 for the whole ensemble, $25 for a long-sleeved shirt only, Dora the Explorer and Supergirl designs too).
– Jackie Burrell