One mom is not happy with Banana Boat after she claims its aerosol sunscreen left her child with second-degree burns.
Rebecca Cannon of Botwood, Newfoundland, explains that she used Banana Boat's SPF 50 Broad Spectrum Kids Sunscreen prior to taking her 14-month-old daughter Kyla outside. She knew that Kyla should be using baby sunscreen, but Cannon didn't have any with her and figured that some form of sun protection would be better than nothing.
"As the day went on, she got a little redder and redder and the next morning she woke up and was swollen, she was bright red, there were blisters starting to pop up," Cannon told CBC News in Canada. She added that Kyla's 3-year-old nephew used the adult sunscreen as well, among other children with them that day, but Kyla was the only one who experienced a reaction. Cannon said she immediately took her daughter to a doctor, who told her that Kyla had second-degree burns.
"He said in some babies, there has been other cases of burns caused by [sunscreen]," she told CBC News. Cannon added that her doctor explained it was possible that the redness, blistering and swelling were a result of a severe allergic reaction to the sunscreen.
Cannon has since shared her story and new coverage of other incidents to Facebook to serve as a warning for other moms about using aerosol sunscreen.
"Since coming home, [I] have found a disturbing amount of cases like ours. I don't know why it's not removed from the shelves," she wrote, adding that she has spoken to Banana Boat and they offered her a reimbursement for the product.
GoodHousekeeping.com reached out to Edgewell Personal Care, the makers of Banana Boat sunscreen, and received the following statement:
"We take all of our consumer's concerns seriously and investigate all cases when we are ed. We work diligently to provide high-quality Banana Boat sun protection products and we are greatly concerned when any person encounters a reaction using our products. We have spoken with the consumer and asked for the product so that our quality assurance team can look into this further. Without examining the product, it is difficult to determine what may have caused the problem as described. Like all products available in Canada, all Banana Boat products in the United States also undergo rigorous testing to ensure they are appropriately labeled and meet all relevant health regulations, including SPF tests."
"Allergic reactions [include] swelling, redness and irritation — not second-degree burns. On the back of the kids' sunscreen bottle [sic] it said it was safe for kids of all ages except for under the age of six months old, so there is no way it should have done that to her," Cannon told GoodHousekeeping.com.
"The best defense from the sun is to seek shade between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. and to cover up by wearing hats, sunglasses and protective clothing," says Birnur Aral, Ph.D., Director of the Health, Beauty and Environmental Sciences Lab at the Good Housekeeping Institute. "Sunscreen should be the secondary mode of defense." (To determine the best formula for your child, it's best to speak to your pediatrician prior to use.)
This post has been updated to include a comment from Cannon to GoodHousekeeping.com.