our 4th of july + staying safe in the sun

Cheers to a short week, but I'm so bummed the 4th of July is over! (Why is this summer passing by so quickly, by the way?) To celebrate the holiday, we went to Edisto Beach to stay with our friends and their new baby who is just 5 weeks older than Watson. We had three blissful days on the beach. The weather couldn't have been more beautiful—and seeing those babies together made my heart ache!!

We had UPF rash guards on the boys (we used this one from Amazon!) for extra sun protection (even though they stayed under a double layer of tents pretty much the whole time. But since the rash guards weren't the same, we had to take them off for a quick sec for a picture so that the babies would be matching perfectly! 

Speaking of sun protection, I wanted to talk a little about sun safety today because it's something I've become more and more aware of lately. I've always had skin that tans easily, but I've also had my fair share of moles biopsied due to skin cancer scares and family history of skin cancer, so keeping safe out in the sun is super important to me. I get yearly checks all over my body for suspicious moles and highly encourage you to get checked, too! 

I wasn't always so worried about sun protection, though. Back in high school and college, I literally could not get tan enough. I always wanted to be more tan and only used tanning oil with SPF 5 or 8. My first apartment in college had a tanning bed as one of the amenities and I would hop in that thing every moment I could. Sort of makes me sick to think about. It makes me so regretful because I can see the damage I did to my skin, not to mention the health risks. 

Sadly, I don't think I'm alone though in not staying safe in the sun. Even now, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports that fewer than one in three adults use sunscreen frequently. What makes this especially scary is that skin cancer is the most common form of all cancers in the U.S. (Rates of new melanoma cases have tripled over the last 35 years, too.)

I found this video by Heather Armstrong, founder of dooce.com, and can relate so much to her story. She shares a few great tips for sun protection. I thought you might like to see.

Here are some basic sun safety tips:
  • Wear clothes that protect your skin: Clothing will protect the skin from the sun’s UV rays and reduce the risk of burning by 27%!
  • Find shade – or make it: We had this tent at the beach for the 4th, with a baby tent underneath and it kept us protected and much cooler!
  • Sunglasses are essential: Sunglasses protect your eyes from UV radiation—of course I had mine off for the picture below, but even Watson had his own shades!
  • Plan around the sun: Go outdoors in early morning or late afternoon when the sun is lower in the sky.
  • Don’t get burned: Red, sore, blistered skin means you’ve gotten far too much sun.
  • Check the UV index: The UV Index provides important information to help you plan your outdoor activities in ways that prevent sun overexposure.
  • Wear sunscreen!

So yes, sunscreen use is important, but what type of sunscreen we use is just as important! Before I switched to safer, I had no idea that so many products on store shelves provide inadequate protection and use ingredients that have been linked to hormone disruption, cancer, reproductive issues, early puberty, allergies... the list goes on. (You can read more about this here if you want.) 

To make sure you're choosing a safe sunscreen, I'd recommend looking on the Environmental Working Group's "Best List" first. My favorite Beautycounter All Over Sunscreen is on the list! It's what I used over the long weekend for the most part—and I use it every single day on my face. It rubs right in and doesn't leave you looking greasy or like a ghost. 

If you're itching for more info, you can download the EWG's Guide to Safer Suncreens for free online or check out their sunscreen website, which shows things like the Worst Scoring Kids Sunscreens, the Best Moisturizers with SPF, etc. They score all the products based on their safety. Really good stuff!

Stepping off my soap box now. Hope you all had a fun and SAFE 4th of July holiday, too! 

P.S. My bathing suit is from here and on sale! The color is so fun!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of EWG Sun Safety. The opinions and text are all mine.


  1. Where did you get your baby tent? We need one!!

  2. Thanks for sharing Megan! This post just reminded me to make an appointment with my dermatologist!

  3. Hi! My history of sun worshipping sounds just like yours, all the way from tanning beds when I was younger to mole biopsies now.. Ugh! I'm grateful that I finally got smart and started taking care of my skin, and I love that you are spreading the word about the importance of sunscreen and vigilance with dermatology visits!

    Even with savvy sun practices over the past three years, I have a lot of skin damage from when I was younger.. Mostly sun spots on my shoulders and dark discolorations on my face. Any advice or product recommendations for how to correct this damage?


  4. Where did you get his rash guard? Looking for a white one!!



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