Sunny side up.

Our complete guide on sunscreen, nanoparticles, aerosols and the word on broad spectrum.

How do sunscreens work?

Sunscreen contains one or both of the following types of active ingredients:

Chemical absorbers – These absorb UV radiation and stop it reaching your skin. On some skin types they can irritate and even cause allergies but there is also a concern as they potentially are

endocrine disruptors and skin penetration enhancers (which have implications for people in contact with other chemicals, such as agricultural pesticides).

Physical blockers- which are zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, reflect and scatter UV radiation. They have generally been considered safer and more effective than chemical absorbers, are better for sensitive skin and renowned for their broad- spectrum UV radiation-blocking abilities. It was discovered that micronising physical blockers resolved that dreaded ghostly look these sunscreens gave.

What are nanoparticles?

Nanoparticles are particles with one or more dimension less than 100nm (where one nanometre is one-billionth of a metre). They exhibit different properties compared with larger particles of the same material, due mostly to the high surface to volume ratio, which can make the particles very reactive. There are some health and environmental concerns around nanoparticles because they’re able to penetrate cells in organisms, and their interactions with biological systems are relatively unknown.

Using spray sunscreens – Are they up to scratch…

They’re promoted as a fast and easy way to apply sunscreen, especially to wriggly kids and hard-to-reach places like your back and neck. But recent news has cast doubt on spray sunscreen products. The Cancer Council has stopped licensing spray sunscreen products because they’re concerned people don’t use them properly, and therefore won’t achieve stated SPF. The main problem is that people underestimate the amount they need, giving a light spray much like they would with insect repellent is not enough to keep you safe.

CHOICE clinical trials revealed that when testing an aerosol sunscreen only 40–60% of the can was sunscreen.  So, what this means is when you spray out 10g, this is what most people consider enough time that they are spraying on their body, about 4–6 grams of sunscreen actually ends up on your skin. You may lose even more to overspray, especially if it’s windy or you’re spraying a small area.

You would therefore need almost half a can of aerosol spray for one full-body application. And you still need to reapply it every two hours. Something to think about when you decide what type of sunscreen you are purchasing.

The Facts – Are you sunning this summer the right way!

Australia has strict standards for sunscreen set out by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), ensuring that all products found on our supermarket shelves provide adequate protection from the sun. In recent years there have been concerns raised about the effectiveness of certain brands and customer research reveals that 55% of adults have experienced occasions when sunscreen has not worked properly.* It’s not clear, however, whether the problems arose due to the effectiveness of the sunscreen used, or because not enough was applied

  • You may think that if you use sunscreen, you’re doing a good job of protecting your skin. Applying it isn’t the only thing that’s important, however. From choosing the right product to knowing how often to apply it.
  • A bottle of sunscreen shouldn’t last through the entire summer. The cancer council recommends that you use about an ounce of sunscreen – the amount that could fit in a shot glass – to cover all the exposed areas of your body.
  • Sunscreen should be used on all exposed areas, so don’t forget to apply it on the tops of your ears, the tops of your feet, the back of your hands and on your face, including near your hairline
  • Don’t wait until you’re out in the direct sun to start applying your sunscreen. Most sunscreens should be applied about 15 to 30 minutes before you’ll be out in the sun, which gives your skin time to absorb them. If you wait until you’re out in the sun, your skin isn’t protected and could already start to burn.
  • Don’t apply sunscreen once and then forget about it. Even if you’re using a waterproof sunscreen, it should be reapplied, at minimum, every two hours, because it starts to degrade over time.

Sunscreen should never be used as the only line of defence against sun damage. It is also important to remember that sunburn is caused by UV radiation, which is not related to temperature:

You should always remember to Slip, Slop, Slap, Seek and Slide…

  • Slip on some sun-protective clothing that covers as much skin as possible – this offers the best protection.
  • Slop on broad spectrum, water resistant SPF30+ (or higher) sunscreen.
  • Slap on a hat – broad brim or legionnaire style to protect your face, head, neck and ears.
  • Seek shade.
  • Slide on some sunglasses – make sure they meet Australian Standards.

What about the Little Innoscents Sunscreen?

I often get asked a lot of questions about sunscreen, and if we should use it or not.  I am definitely an advocate for chemical/toxic free living and I ensure that I expose my children to the least amount of chemicals as possible. I do however believe that if you live in Australia, you simply can’t get away without using sunscreen.   You just need to choose a safer choice.

The Little Innoscents Sunscreen uses zinc oxide to block out the sun’s rays and there are no nano-particles in our products. You can tell for yourself by rubbing the lotion into your skin – it is not transparent; therefore, the particles are bigger than nano.  It also features soothing Vitamin E, organic green tea, cucumber, rosehip extract and zinc oxide which protects against UVA, UVB and even UVC. Best of all only retails $19.99 for 100mls and is free from preservatives so is suitable for the whole family.

The Little Innoscents sun lotion is safe to use on children from six months of age and may also suit people with sensitive skin. This unique formulation provides skin with essential protection so summer lovers can now feel safe in the knowledge that your skin will be cleansed, nourished and protected.

Little Innoscents products are Australian made with 100% Natural, Pure and Organic ingredients.  Completely free from Toxic Chemicals, Parabens and all other little hidden nasties

Directions: Squeeze and shake well before use. Apply liberally onto dry skin and rub in evenly 20 minutes prior to sun exposure.  Apply enough to give a visible layer before rubbing in.   Re-apply every 1-2 hrs, also after swimming, exercise, excessive perspiration and towel drying.  Avoid prolonged sun exposure.  Wearing protective eye wear, hat and clothing is also recommended while being in the sun.

Warning:  For external use only, keep out of eyes.  Do not use on broken or damaged skin.  If irritation occurs discontinue use.  Avoid prolonged sun exposure.  Wearing protective eye wear, hat and clothing is recommended whilst being in the sun.

Sunscreen Active Ingredients        Zinc Oxide 220mg/g

About the Author: Antonette Golikidis is the founder of the Little Innoscents range and is qualified in Health Sciences, Remedial Massage Therapy and Aromatherapy. The greatest effort has gone into ensuring the information on this page is valid, however if you are concerned about the health of your child; please ensure you visit your healthcare professional also.

References for this information:

www.choice.com.au

www.cancer.org.auJournal of Allergy and Therapy
Melanoma and Pigmented Lesions, An Issue of Dermatologic Clinics, Volume 30-3 1st Edition
British Journal of Dermatology, July 2008

B Corporation

Ethical Business

Little Innoscents is part of the B Corporation global community of over 2,300 businesses in more than 50 countries across 130 industries that are striving to be the best FOR the world by using their business as a force for good.

“It is our chance as a business to become and have a higher purpose and a chance of solving society’s most challenging problems,” says Director Antonette Golikidis.

We are proud to be a B Corporation

We’re proud to be a B Corporation.

B-Corp

Little Innoscents is here to make a change on many levels; we are here to be successful in business AND we are here to make a difference to the community by caring for the future of our children and the many families that we encourage around the world to switch to healthier options in skincare and household products. To be a B Corporation aligns with our vision, goals and our overall ethos. It means everything to us and gives our consumers the assurance that our products have been manufactured and handled according to strict guidelines. It is our chance as a business to become accountable and have a higher purpose and a chance to help solve some of the environmental impacts that we face on our planet today and for tomorrow.

As a Certified B Corporation, you can be assured that we’ve met verified higher levels of social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability to the highest standards.

Our Beliefs

  • We believe that we have an obligation to our consumers, suppliers, and distributors to create a great quality product range that is safe for both the community and for the planet.
  • We believe children need to be nurtured and cared for by using products that minimise their exposure to potentially harmful chemicals.
  • We believe in being conscious of the environment when using personal care products.

The B Corp movement is one of the most important of our lifetime, built on the simple fact that business impacts and serves more than just shareholders—it has an equal responsibility to the community and to the planet.” Rose Marcario, CEO of Patagonia

To find out more about other businesses like Little Innoscents, who are actively working to build a better world, go to www.bcorporation.com.au.

Absorbing Chemicals By Antonette Golikidis

Absorbing Chemicals via the skin

Why should we be interested in natural skin care? Our skin works hard for us.

It’s the largest organ in our body and provides a number of essential functions including protection, the regulation of body temperature and the creation of Vitamin D from sunlight.

There are 3 layers to the skin – the epidermis, dermis and cutaneous layer. For many years it was believed that these skin layers did an admirable job of keeping nasty chemicals at bay, but some sections of the scientific community have started to understand that this is far from the case. Many now argue that when any chemical comes into contact with the skin it can be absorbed, with the exact effects dependant on a number of factors including the size of the molecules of a particular substance, duration of exposure, and health of the skin.

While the scientific debate continues, there’s no denying that at its most basic, chemical absorption can irritate, sensitise and destroy skin tissue. Irritation might take the form of  skin rashes.  Sensitising skin by frequently using harsh chemicals can make it much more prone to chemical irritation in the future. And destroying skin tissue prematurely ages skin.

Chemicals to look out for in skincare

The list of potentially toxic chemical ingredients found in some skincare products is longer than Paris Hilton’s shopping list, however a couple of the more common (and more easily pronounced) include parabens and mineral oil. Parabens are one of the most widely used preservatives worldwide, regularly found in skin care products, cosmetics, toothpaste, and shampoos. In various studies, they have been linked to everything from dermatitis to breast cancer.

What chemicals are in your skincare products?

Mineral oil is a by-product of petroleum and is a common ingredient in cosmetics, baby lotions and moisturisers. Suggested effects include disruption of the skin’s natural ability to rid itself of toxins, premature aging and damage to cell function.

The long and short of this is that if any skin care product contains an ingredient you don’t recognise, or can’t pronounce, it’s probably a synthetic additive, and you just can’t be sure how much of it you’re absorbing.

Our skin is designed to protect us from nature, not from chemicals and additives. Why take the risk? Choose natural skin care products like Little Innoscents and stop irritating your skin.

About the Author: Antonette Golikidis has studied Natural Health Science at the Australian College of Natural Medicine and is qualified in Remedial Massage Therapy and Aromatherapy. Currently, she lectures in Remedial Massage at a tertiary level.

*While the greatest effort has been invested to ensure the validity of this information, the advice therein is set as a ‘general’ guide only, and your individual needs may require a different method to the one shown. We encourage you to see your regular healthcare professional, should you be concerned for you or your baby’s wellbeing.

Summer Skincare Tips for Babies

Summer Skin Care Tips for Babies

How to protect your baby’s skin this summer

It’s summer in Australia and that means more time outdoors paddling in the pool, swimming, building sandcastles at the beach or playing at the park. It’s all great fun, however, our hot Aussie sun can take a toll on your child’s skin. Baby skin is softer and finer than adult skin and it loses moisture at a much greater rate. We’ve listed our top summer skincare tips for babies to help you to protect their skin through the warmer months.

Choosing the best sun protection

Evidence suggests that childhood sun exposure contributes significantly to your lifetime risk of skin cancer. It’s important to take multiple approaches to protecting your child’s skin from sun damage.

  • Choose a broad spectrum, SPF30 (or higher) natural sunscreen that contains zinc oxide as the active ingredient. The Little Innoscents SPF30 Natural Sun Lotion is a great choice for babies over 6 months of age. Apply to areas of exposed skin that are not covered by protective clothing, such as the face, ears, hands, neck and feet
  • Avoid sunscreens that contain chemical UV blockers and other nasties such as parabens, octyl methoxycinnamate (OMC), oxybenzone (benzophenone-3), octyl-dimethyl-PABA and octinoxate, 4-methylbenzylidene camphor (4-MBC), padimate O (2-ethylhexyl-4-dimethylaminobenzoate), tints or artificial fragrances
  • Cover up with a hat that protects the baby’s face, neck and ears and appropriate outdoor clothing to protect the skin, such as a long-sleeved rashie swimsuit. We recommend fabrics that are tested and approved with an SPF 50+ sun safety rating such as those available in the Australian Rashoodz range of rashies and hats for babies and children
  • A pair of wraparound sunglasses will help to protect your baby’s eyes
  • Try to plan your day’s activities outside the middle of the day when UV levels are most intense. Limit the time you spend in the direct sun and seek shade where possible

Choose SPF50+ outdoor clothing and a hat like this example from Rashoodz

Keeping skin hydrated

Our Australian summers can be harsh on delicate baby skin, so keeping them hydrated is very important.

  • First and foremost, always give plenty of fluids on warmer days spent outside. Breast milk is ideal, but if your baby or toddler has weaned, give them either formula or water and also fruit and vegetables with a high water content, such as watermelon are good choices for older babies who have started solid foods
  • Moisturise once or twice a day with an Organic Baby Moisturiser to keep the skin hydrated from the outside. This is particularly important for those who suffer from sensitive skin or other dry skin conditions, as keeping the skin from drying out can be a useful preventative measure
  • If the skin or lips do get too dry after a day outdoors, or a little too much sun exposure has occurred and caused sunburn, a quality, natural skin balm such as a Paw Paw Balm or an Intensive Soothing Baby Balm will go a long way to helping lock in and restore moisture and to heal and soothe it as quickly as possible

Preventing and Soothing insect bites

If you are in an area that is prone to lots of mosquitoes or biting insects, there are a few ways that you can tackle the problem.

  • The best preventative measure is a toxic chemical free one. Dress in long sleeves and pants and if necessary, apply a natural or organic insect repellent to any exposed areas of skin (avoiding the eyes, mouth, hands or any areas of broken skin). Avoid products that contain DEET
  • Ensure that you wash off any insect repellant that you have used on the skin once you head inside
  • Use mosquito netting or a light muslin cloth over your pram
  • If your child does get bitten, wash the area and apply a soothing balm such as Paw Paw Balm or an Intensive Soothing Lotion. If there are any signs of allergic reaction, such as swelling around the bite or hives, head to your doctor asap

It might all sound overwhelming, but once you have taken all the necessary precautions, make sure that you get out there and enjoy our beautiful Australian summer. I guarantee it will be worth it!

About the Author: Antonette Golikidis has studied Natural Health Science at the Australian College of Natural Medicine and is qualified in Remedial Massage Therapy and Aromatherapy. Currently, she lectures in Remedial Massage at a tertiary level.

*While the greatest effort has been invested to ensure the validity of this information, the advice therein is set as a ‘general’ guide only, and your individual needs may require a different method to the one shown. We encourage you to see your regular healthcare professional, should you be concerned for you or your baby’s wellbeing.

Baby Massage

Baby Massage Tips and Techniques

Baby Massage Techniques and Tips

Most mums see baby skin care is an important part of caring for baby’s health but did you know that baby massage can play an integral role in keeping your baby healthy and happy too?

Baby massage has been used in other cultures for centuries. It can be great for the parent and child bond, but that’s far from the only benefit.

It’s also believed to stimulate the immune system, improve circulation and digestion, aid the development of movement and coordination, reduce colic, promote better sleep and even stimulate growth in premature babies.

How do I massage?

As a mother, you can instinctively find your own natural abilities to massage your baby, making sure that baby is comfortable and enjoying the experience.

Making your baby feel cared for and caressed is only natural and is a wonderful way to make your little one feel loved and nurtured.

For those that would like to follow a specific technique, try using the baby massage sequence below.

To begin

Place the massage oil in the hands and rub vigorously to warm the liquid.

baby massage

Start with your baby’s legs…..

Nurse the foot with one hand and gently “milk” the leg from ankle to thigh with the other.
Next, holding the foot with both hands, use a gentle squeezing and twisting action, moving upwards from foot to thigh.
To finish, stroke from foot to the top of the thigh. Repeat all techniques on the opposite leg.

baby massage

Next, move onto the tummy…..

Using both hands, palms flat, in a hand-over-hand clockwise circular motion, from left to right.

To relieve a bloated stomach, using your fingertips ‘walk’ in a clockwise circular motion around the belly.=

To massage the chest, glide both hands outwards from the centre of the ribcage up to the shoulders and back again ‘Bicycling’ the legs after this massage can also relieve pain. Always stop if a child becomes distressed or uncomfortable.

baby massage

For the arms and hands…..

Nurse the babies hand with one hand and gently “milk” the arm from wrist to shoulder with the opposite hand.

Next, holding the babies arm with both your hands, use a gentle squeezing and twisting action, moving upwards from wrist to shoulder.

To finish, stroke from wrist to the top of the shoulder. Repeat all techniques on the opposite arm.

baby massage

Finally, the back…

Gently turn your baby onto his/her tummy for the back massage.
With your fingertips, gently massage little circles all over the back.
Lastly, use the waterfall stroke, which is palm of hand over hand moving from neck to feet continuously and slowly. At the end of this beautiful massage, it is lovely to give your baby a cuddle.

My top 10 expert baby massage tips:

  • Massage after a bath when your baby is already undressed
  • Giving a massage before bed is a great part of your bedtime routine, helping your baby to relax and settle for bed
  • Make sure you’re in a warm room, with no drafts, bright lights, or excessive noise
  • Have an organic oil or massage lotion ready in a plastic bowl beside you, so that you can dip into it without fiddling
  •  Place baby on a thick towel or blanket
  • Rub your hands vigorously to warm the massage oil or lotion before applying to the skin
  • Keep your massage sequence short until you establish what parts your baby enjoys
  • Be prepared for interruptions – a little baby may want to turn over. Just bear with them and continue with your technique where you left off.
  • You can put baby on your lap, belly down, or resting on your shoulder if it’s easier
  • Keep other children away from baby – give them their own doll to massage
  • Always stop if the child shows signs of distress

In all aspects of the massage, be guided by your baby’s reaction. If they start to become upset, try softening the strokes (not so soft as to tickle) or try a different spot.

Being physically gentle is vital but it’s also important not to use a product that could irritate their beautiful skin, so choose a gentle, organic product which will not cause any harm when absorbed by the skin.

Get the ambiance right with a little soothing music and soft lighting, and you might find that baby massage is relaxing and beneficial for tired, stressed mums too!

Try the Little Innoscents Massage Oil to massage your baby.

 

About the Author: Antonette Golikidis has studied Natural Health Science at the Australian College of Natural Medicine and is qualified in Remedial Massage Therapy and Aromatherapy. She has lectured in Remedial Massage at a tertiary level. The greatest effort has gone into ensuring the information on this page is valid, however, if you are concerned about the health of your child, please visit your healthcare professional.

 

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