I'm gonna soak up the sun...

arizona sunMay in Arizona = Plenty of Sunshine.

Wait, scratch that. 

Every day in Arizona is bright. The sun is a permanent resident here...even in mid-January. It can be raining one moment, and then the sun will come out just like that. Sometimes the sun even shines while it's raining. How cool is that?

Okay, I better zip my lips about that before you all pack your bags and head out here to the wild, wild west. On second thought, maybe that would be good for my property value...

skin cancer foundation logoMoving on. 

May is Skin Cancer Awareness month, and skin cancer is no laughing matter. 

Check out these sobering statistics from the Skin Cancer Foundation website:

  • Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. 
  • Each year there are more new cases of skin cancer than the combined incidence of cancers of the breast, prostate, lung and colon.
  • One in five Americans will develop skin cancer in the course of a lifetime.
  • More than 20 Americans die each day from skin cancer, primarily melanoma. One person dies of melanoma almost every hour (every 62 minutes).
  • One blistering sunburn in childhood or adolescence more than doubles a person's chances of developing melanoma later in life.
  • A person's risk for melanoma doubles if he or she has had five or more sunburns at any age.

Skin cancer is dangerous, and it can be deadly. As parents, it's our responsibility to protect our children from harm...and keeping them (and ourselves) out of the sun is one important way to do that. 

You can get your sun and have your fun and stay safe at the same time by...

  1. Slathering on sunscreen
  2. Wearing hats and sunglasses
  3. Wearing UV protective clothing
  4. Staying out of the sun during "peak" hours
  5. Being intentional about standing in the shade
  6. Avoiding "tanning" - outdoors or at a salon

Today, I have a giveaway bundle to help moms stay safe through the summer months:

smartshield logoFirst, I'm pleased to include some great products from SmartShield ("We're serious about sunscreen"). The company specializes in sunscreens that are "non-oily, light on the skin, and eco-friendly." The winner will receive all four of the below products:

kids sunscreen spf30 smartshieldKIDS SPF30 Sunscreen Lotion ($11.99) - Designed especially for children, this paba-free sunscreen is creamy and water-proof. 



spf30 sunscreen gel smartshieldSPF30 Sunscreen Gel ($12.99) - If you're not a fan of cream-based lotions, why not try a gel? It has a cooling alcohol base and is "great for people who have oily skin or acne."



spf30 face eyes nose balm smartshieldSPF30 Eyes Face and Nose Balm ($4.99) - Sunscreen in a stick! I love this concept! No need to get your hands all slimy.



spf30 lip balm smartshieldSPF30 Lip Balm ($2.99) - Lips can get sunburned too! Don't forget to smooth on some sunscreen-infused balm.



uv skinz logoSecond, the winner will also have his or her choice of any one item from UV Skinz. The company is known for sun protective swimshirts that carry a UPF rating of 50+, but they also sell UV shorts, sun hats, and shades.

My daughter looks absolutely adorable in her skinz (see below - she's wearing the Carly Blue/Purple shirt and the Purple Girls Board Shorts). I much prefer her wearing this stylish shirt/shorts combo to a skimpy swimsuit (for a number of reasons actually...). It's good to know that her skin is protected whether she's splashing in a pool, running through the sprinklers in the backyard, or swinging "super high" on the swings at the park.


Interestingly, both companies began because the owners had a personal experience with skin cancer...and wanted to educate others about the dangers of the disease. Since one in five Americans develop skin cancer in their lifetime, it's likely that you or someone you know will have it...or has it already. Let's all do our best to decrease that statistic with the next generation...by protecting our kids and ourselves. 

WIN IT! One winner will receive all of the above products.(SPF30 Kids Sunscreen Lotion, SPF30 Sunscreen Gel, SPF30 Eyes Face and Nose Balm, and SPF30 Lip Balm from SmartShield, PLUS any one item of his/her choice from UV Skinz). To enter, leave any topic-related comment on this post prior to Thursday, May 14 at midnight (Don’t forget to follow the rules…all generic comments like “Enter me!,” “Love it,” and “Cool stuff!” will be disqualified.).

Image Credit (Arizona sun, top right): via frekur's Flickr page

*UPDATE* The winner is #87 beth shepherd. Congratulations!

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128 comments on “I'm gonna soak up the sun...”

  1. We've finally trained the kids enough that sunscreen is no longer a battle to apply, but the UV clothing helps an awful lot! I feel so much safer with UV clothes and sunblock on them!

  2. The one place I always forget when I slather is the top of my feet. I've had a couple of burns there, so you'd think I'd remember...but alas. Wear shoes really hurts then. :-(

  3. People just don't fully realize how important it is to wear sunscreen. I am astounded every time I visit my dermatologist and his room is packed with people suffering from sun damage

  4. I love the uvskins website. They have so many different designs for the whole family. My favorite is the Sharky - L Shark Camo/Navy :)

  5. My daughter attends a summer camp and we go through this stuff like water. She is well lathered and it has saved her skin!

  6. I wear a lot of sunblock year round and make sure that I always wear a hat when I go outdoors, you never can be too careful when it comes to the sun.

  7. I live in Arizona too. I'm going to look into those sun protective swimshirts a little more. My family can't have to much sun protection!

  8. I've got fair skinned kids and I always make sure that they get slathered with sunscreen whenever they go outside. It's so important, and so far, they've never had a sunburn. Thanks for the great giveaway. Would love to win these great products.

  9. my son is a rehead and has very sensitive skin i always try to keep sunscreen on him at all times :)

  10. We just moved to Northern VA and I have to say.. it's just as bad as when we lived in FL! *sigh*

  11. I love the idea of the Eyes Face and Nose Balm. Having it in a stick that you can just swipe on is so convenient!

  12. This is so important! We are always in the sun living here in Florida! I constantly am yelling "did you put on your sunscreen" or "make sure the baby is ready"! Thank you for making us all aware of prevention!

  13. I live in South Florida and I feel extra oblagated to protect my little on from the sun. As a kid I got quite a few bad burns, because we pratically lived at the pool/beach. This is something I may pay for in the future. I have had friends and family affected by skin cancer and I now know the importance of protecting you skin!

  14. we cant wait to summer pool time. we are hoping to open our pool soon. would love to win this we need some sunscreen for the kiddoes.

  15. Well, I can say I will probably get it, based on the stats above. More than one blistering burn in childhood, and more then 5 burns in my lifetime. Add to that my light skin, light eyes, and family history of it and I'm practically doomed. I do slather on the screen though, in hopes of warding it off. Would love to try this stuff, thanks.

  16. A lot of permanent skin damage is done when you are a kid so I am extra careful to make sure my son is protected in the sun. Thanks for the chance at some great items.

  17. I can't wait for summer weather to stay! I keep my sunscreen in a basket near the back door so that I don't forget to grab it and slather it on the family before going out to play.

  18. I could really use this package because I don't have any sunscreen yet for this year and we are just starting to spend a lot of time outside.

  19. I worry so much about my Mother as she loves to soak upthe sun. My Sister and I are very fair,asarealotofmy family. A light bulb over 40 watts will leave us red. We should have stock in sunblock.

    Thank you so very much for the chance to win. I wish more people understood the risks of the sun.

  20. This is wonderful because we are very fair and my husband has already had skin cancer on his neck removed. It is good to have safe products that protect and that work well. Thank you.

  21. My cousin has battled lung cancer and Im glad to see someone come out with such a clothing line, that's amazing and way to go!

  22. Living in Michigan, I honestly get so excited when the sun finally comes back out at the end of the long winters and don't tend to think too much about it's damaging effects. This would be great to keep my whole family protected from the sun, while still being able to be outside and enjoy it!

  23. I'm fair-skinned and I've been sunburnt in the past so I try to be really careful about using sunscreen when I'm outside. These products look like they would be pleasant to apply and have on your skin.

  24. If I won, as the extra item I would choose The Adventure Hat in Lavendar! All the products in the giveaway are GREAT!

  25. Sunscreen is so important. It's never to early to get kids started on this habit. Thanks!

    braaisjo at gmail dot com

  26. I would love to win these.
    We've had many skin cancer scares in our family.
    So Im very protective when it comes to going out in the sun.

  27. My son wouldn't have a problem wearing this. He hates almost all the other Sunscreens. I would love to try these products.


  28. We spend a lot of time outdoors, especially in the summer, and are always looking for more effective sunscreens.

  29. Thank you for a great giveaway! With the summer time fast approaching this would be fabulous to win for my kids. We are always outside playing and having fun. Thank you!
    [email protected]

  30. My family spends a lot of time at Disneyland and it's really easy to get sunburned when you stand in lines, especially for those of us who are very fair skinned. We go through quite a bit of sunblock even though the kids whine about having to slow down and getting slathered with sunblock.

  31. I wear sunscreen, daily year round. I try to tell my friends and family how important is to protect your skin from the harmful UV rays. Most people do no listen though. I get compliments on my skin all of the time and I always say that if my skin is aging well I owe it to Sunscreen.

    janetfaye (at) gmail (dot) com

  32. Because we live in florida and sometimes want something long sleeve but light weight I would choose the Cheryl - Long-Sleeve - Black Full-Zip for all arm sun protection.
    I also like their Adventure Hat - White

    Thank you


  33. Here in Austin, TX we definitely watch out for the sun. I got the bug a UV full body swim suit this year. Its awesome that UV Skinz is giving away an extra shirt with every order! Thanks! thebubbledies(at)gmail(dot)com

  34. What a great giveaway!! My Mom's Best friend Died had skin cancer. It's HORRIBLE! I try to keep my daughter protected... as much as I can. I would love to win this package! Thanks

  35. You can never have to much sunscreen in the AZ sun. I have a cheek balm sunscreen I use a lot. I do always wonder what is being absorbed into the skin with sunscreen. This sounds like a worry free option.

  36. Please enter me! My daughter is so dark she doesn't burn, so I need the reminder to be really careful with her too.

  37. I so need these for my family! My husband works outside almost everyday int he summer and both my kids have scars from various surgeries their faces, so sunscreen is important not only for skin health, but for minimizing the look of their scars as well.

  38. My family could use these products are we are fair skinned and burn easily. With Summer coming up we can never have too much sunscreen

  39. I have never heard of ths brand, but the "non-oily, light on the skin, and eco-friendly" sounds exactly like what I have been looking for. Thanks!

  40. I put on sunscreen everytime I go to the lake or lay out in my pool. The sun is so bad for your skin. My sister lays in the tanning bed and I wish I could get her to stop.

  41. Thanks for such a great combo-product giveaway. I worry about my three year old when she's out in the sun and products like the UV Skinz are so awesome. You don't have to worry about re-applying and whether you missed any spots. Combined with the Smart Shield products, mommy can relax.... I love sunscreen that is specifically designed for children.

    Maya loves being outdoors - she's outside right now with her daddy, playing in their garden.

    thank you UVSkinz and SmartShield for a generous giveaway!!!

  42. I always was pretty cautious with my children and the sun...but since last year I have had to be even more cautious. Everyone needs to really pay attention to medications they take, as some can cause sun sensitivity! I noticed a week ago that my daughter got a bit pink just from taking a walk on a mostly cloudy day!

  43. I am absolutely fanatic when it comes to sunscreen. I hate it when my skin gets that "tight" feeling from too much sun damage. I haven't tried SmartShield or UVSkinz products before. Thanks for the chance to win some!

  44. This is a wonderful collection that covers about everything. I find myself that I never have enough
    sunscreen. I put one in the diaper bag (for baby skin) I have one in the car (just in case) I have one for my husband and I (that isn't pure white and 80 SPF) and I have a tube of Mustella for babies faces that I keep in my purse. Some how or another I always seem to lose one lol!

  45. In Florida, the sun is a year round problem. So many people have skin cancer. I have a hat and use sun screen every time I go out. I even carry it in the car along with extra hats. My relatives were shocked how quickly they burned.

  46. i have extremely fair skin and i have had some bad sunburns before...uv skinz would be great to have so i can enjoy the beach!

  47. I try to protect myself from the sun, I like the SKINZ 3/4 sleeve v-neck ladies tee-very atractive

  48. Washington (my state) actually has one of the highest skin cancer rates because we have so little sunlight. Sun can do damage even on a cloudy day and we get plenty of those

  49. Wow - if I use these products, will my kids end up as cute as the one on your site? :-) I worry A LOT about skin cancer - my kids get tired of me reminding them to put on more sunscreen all the time.

  50. After having a mole removed a few years ago, I have been more conscious of skin care. I hate to admit that I still need to be reminded to put on sunscreen on a every day basis - and not just when I plan on being outdoors all day.

  51. I often forget to use sunscreen when I go outside. Bad me. When I go to the beach or on vacation, I am much better at using it often.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  52. We so need to be better about sunscreen and protecting ourselves from this wicked AZ. sun. My kids tan easily so sometimes we forget how important it is to have that shield of protection!

  53. My sister has had skin cancer, and my nieces and nephews have ALL had moles removed. we are very light skinned, and this would be great for us to try.

  54. Wow this would be great for the grand children when they're here and i take them out. What a needed giveaway. Thanks for the chance to win this.

  55. I have tanned for years and when I was young I never used sunscreen. Now that Im older and wiser I know how important it is to use sunscreen and to protect my skin as well as my kids.

  56. It's so important for everyone in the family to wear sunscreen - I'm always after my husband to wear it when he is doing yardwork. It's not just for swimming.

  57. my husband has a history of abnormal moles and he is constantly slathering on the sunscreen. that clear gel looks like it would be great for him since he's usually covered in the white cream. the kids screen would be great for my niece and nephew this summer when they go to the pool. thanks.

  58. I live about a mile from the ocean in the Northeast. I love the beach!! We spent many years drenched in baby oil trying to get a tan(1970s
    ). That sounds so crazy now. Now I do the polar opposite.

  59. Its hard for me to remember using sun protection. It was never a thought when I was a kid. This would help me though!

  60. I live in FL and see people all the time sunburned on the beach and still not covering up. We all need to protect ourselves from the sun's damaging rays. I could really use this for my family.

  61. I have fair skin that burns easily. I wish we had known how dangerous UV exposure is when we were growing up. It would have been nice to have these products back then.

  62. I have a very good friend who has had skin cancer so I'm very cautious about time in the sun. I'd love to try one of the hats.

  63. Living in AZ also, this is something I need. Our company is having a health fair next week and am hoping they offer a screening.

  64. It's so hard to keep a toddler protected when they are wired to explore. Would love to have these tools at my disposal.
    tvollowitz at aol dot com

  65. I am all ready for summer, I can already smell the wet pool towels and sunscreen. Aahhhh! Which we go through a lot of! I haven't yet bought this year's supply, and the Smartshield products seem pretty reasonably priced.

  66. It seems odd to see someone with a tan (well in Mass anyway) nowadays, since everyone is more conscious of the dangers. My grandkids are fair skinned, and after a scare with non-malignant skin cancer, I am even more of an advocate of smart sun behavior

  67. As a fellow 360-days-of-sunsine-a-year resident, these prizes would be wonderful. My mantra with Calvin is "sunscreen every day." For him and me. In reality it doesn't happen every day, but he knows it's the rule.

  68. have been paranoid about the sun since youth- use sunscreen year round- love the skins tops

  69. This is a great prize. I have four children and live in the high desert. I am constantly slathering on sunscreen, and that can get expensive, especially with one child that has extremely sensitive. I have been meaning to try the UV protective clothing, but it seems that I would have to purchase four at one time, and that can add up really fast. This would be great for convincing my husband that this is something we should invest in!

  70. wow what a great company. skin cancer runs in our family. it hasn't seemed to touch my generation yet. hopefully my mom's paranoia will have paid off and therefore mine on my kids. i buy the minimum 40SPF for my kids and myself and do make sure i have lipbalm with sun protection. Because i am not so into the heat i prefer to just stay inside during peak temperature hours and minimize that impact. i'd gladly welcome new products that are more natural and safe.

  71. my oldest son has autism so we need to use natural products on him including his sun screen. I'd love anything that was gentle to him.

  72. My daughter is as fair skinned as your sweetpea is and she recently was bitten by a dog-to avoid scarring we've been slathering on the lotion. This would help greatly.

  73. We just got back from a fishing trip with my 5 yr old and baby. It was cloudy and I did not think to put sunscreen on my boy. I was too concerned with our new baby. My son got a bit sun burned and I feel awful about it. I promise myself this will not happen again!

  74. I have had a bout with melanoma, so, I am a big user of suncreen. I also keep after my family and friends to use sunscreen also. Please count me in. Thanks!!

  75. Your post reminded me I need to make a dermatologist appointment for a checkup! It is so important for the little ones to make sure they are properly protected.

  76. Living in a sunny area in South, my family uses sunscreen on a daily basis. The sun can do so much skin damage, if one does not get adequate protection.

  77. I cringe when I see those high school girls who have baked themselves to a crisp for prom! Sometimes, I think they're competing to see who can get the darkest! And even with all we know about skin cancer, they still do it!

    Great prizes! Some lucky winner (fingers crossed!) will be very happy! :)

  78. I'm fair-skinned and can sunburn in 15 minutes flat, and I've already had MOHS surgery to remove basal skin cancer. Suffered many horrendous sunburns as a child before parents knew how dangerous that is! Now I'm a new grandmother with a beautiful 6-month-old granddaughter who has fair, very sensitive skin. Also have a fair teen at home who is prone to break-outs. We're all going together on a beach holiday this summer, so all of these perfect products would be much appreciated!
    Everyone, please protect those children from getting too much sun!!

  79. Well, I couldn't personally use the sunscreen, since I've been allergic to every last one I've ever tried. It's not the best thing, what with having rather fair skin and all. My husband who works outside all day could sure use it, though! And the rashguards are so cute! I want them for my girls and myself, too!

  80. Our school was built 2 years ago and they didn't have enough money in the budget for sun-shades over the playground equipment. In Arizona! It's so ridiculous. At the end of the last school year the PTA raised enough money to cover the Kindergarden playground and this year they finally raised enough to cover the big playground. Hopefully the kids will have a safer place to play next year, but it just galls me that no one thought it important enough to build into the initial budget. OK - off my soapbox. Huff, huff.

  81. What a great giveaway! I'm very fair-skinned and am religious about using sunscreen, wearing big hats, etc. I've already had 8 moles removed, due to them being suspicious. Luckily, all have been benign, but since I got numerous sunburns as a child, I'm worried that may day will come. So it's not surprising that my 3.5 year old daughter thinks that sunscreen and hats are a way of life! Anyway, I'm all about trying new products that can keep us protected from the sun!

  82. We've been slathering on the sunscreen before school and daycare in the morning, because it's so hot and sunny lately! I would love to try these products on the kids (and the rst of the family). Thanks!

  83. I actually have a question for you. Is that against comment etiquette? I hope not! Anyway I'm wondering if you can recommend a sun hat for a newborn. All the ones I'm finding are way too big for my little lady's head. Let me know if you have any suggestions.


  84. We live in Tucson, as well, and I would love to try these products! Summer for me usually means sunscreen and breakouts!! My oldest son has very fair skin and I hate seeing him greasy after he puts sunscreen on in the morning. What a great giveaway!

  85. I really hope I'm able to keep my daughter from getting any bad sunburns while she is growing up!! I would love to get her a shirt from Skinz!

  86. We are very aware of the sun in Colorado as well since we also receive 300 plus days of sunshine and we are so much closer to the sun. As soon as I hit 30 I got better about sunscreen but I still have a long way to go. I also need to get better at ALWAYS putting sunscreen on the girls in the morning before we start out day and then again when we head outside.

  87. Just last week my little one got a bit of a sunburn on her scalp. It was one of the first weeks of nice weather and I can't believe I wasn't more prepared. This prize would help a ton!

  88. I burn so easily that I'm always wearing sunscreen. I was surprised though that I didn't burn in Jamaica the times we have gone. I must have covered up well.

    I had never heard of UVSkinz. So cool. Love the hats and clothes.

  89. The intense sun rays in AZ can burn you in 15 minutes. We are HUGE on sunscreen in my house. I love the idea of gel sunscreen, it would be great to try it!! I would love to have a UV Skinz for my daughter!! Thanks for highlighting this company!!

  90. They have so many great products! I think those shirts would come in very handy for young kids--keep them cooler than a regular shirt but still keep them protected!

    And sticks of sunscreen are GREAT for putting on squirmy kids, and also very nice for yourself!

  91. I once read that skin cancer is more common in people with darker skin. Since they don't get sunburned as easily, they are less diligent about using sunscreen products. I don't remember where I read it, so I don't know how true it is. But I now have two little kids who are half-hispanic and I am going to be sure to protect their skin from the sun just as well (or better) as I protect my own fair skin.

  92. These products would be well-used in my house. My husband and I are both very fair-skinned. Furthermore, melanoma runs in my husband's family, so we have to be vigilant about keeping him protected when outdoors. Finally, I'll be pregnant for most of the summer, and pregnant women are more vulnerable to the sun's rays!

  93. Oh, how I long to see the sun again! All we've had in MD is clouds and rain for nearly two weeks. I've never seen a gel before- great idea. Would love to try that! Your daughter is so cute- looks like she's ready for the beach.

  94. I don't burn easily but I do have a lot of moles and have had over two dozen of them removed so being careful in the sun is definitely something I've learned to do! I really prefer protective clothing - much nicer than all the chemicals and I'm so with you on the whole skimpy swimsuit thing... someone tried to give Sugar a bikini - I said "No Thanks!"

  95. Your daughter looks so cute in that outfit.

    I'm a huge fan of clothing with extra SPF protection because I tend to spend a lot of time out in the sun during the summer (sailing!) and I really dislike the smell and feel of sunscreen. Not to mention the idea of all those chemicals. So the less I have to use - the better!

  96. I am known to all of my friends as Safety Pup and that is for good reason. I am big on seat belts, safety goggles and SUNSCREEN!! My husband, son and I are fair skinned and I am a firm believer that the sun is not only dangerous it ages you quickly! I am always interested in trying products that are good for the skin.

  97. I married my handsome husband with the fair skin. And we just had a handsome little fair-skinned baby. This is our first summer with the little one and I've been told we can't use sunscreen on him yet. So we're on the lookout for less chemicals in our sunscreen and a physical barrier (like UV Skinz) for our son.

  98. I just realized that I missed the FREE skin cancer screening that the Desert Museum had on Sunday and Monday. This is something that I have been thinking more and more about. Thanks for reminding me to be more aware... and to make an appointment with a dermatologist to get a few moles checked. Better safe than sorry!

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