When the nice people at Nivea noticed we were soon to be headed on another family holiday to France this year (courtesy of the rather brilliant Keycamp) they wrote and asked if we would mind awfully trying out their new ‘Pure & Sensitive’ sun lotion, designed specifically for busy summer children.
I plopped it in the cupboard, ready for said French Trip. But then the sun came out. It’s always so unexpected in April, isn’t it? But there we were, absorbed in a rather shouty mid day French Cricket match, when I realised quite how hot the sun was. Feeling a bit smug, I efficiently produced the bottle and started covering exposed parts of small children – cheeks, noses and backs of necks are all prone at this time of year I find, being fully unprotected as they emerge blinking into the sunshine, bright in their Northern Climes Winter Whiteness.
The cream was much as you’d expect a decent children’s sun cream to be – thick, easily absorbed, went a long way, and smelled nice. And not too girly. Necessary, of course.
Children these days are all far more Sun Aware than we ever were – even my pamper-resistant tough-boys will cover up when prompted, wear a hat without needing to be asked, and don’t complain (except for the obligatory boy-mutter) when I start reaching for the sun cream. In return, I make sure I buy a decent long-lasting cream that doesn’t need replacing every 20 minutes if they’re in the pool (this one is very water resistant), protects them properly (it’s only made in SPF 50+ with the highest UVA and UVB protection). Oh, and doesn’t smell too ‘girly’. Obviously. Best of all, this new cream from NIVEA is 100% free from perfume, colourants and preservatives – helps reduce those skin allergy flare ups – and has been especially developed for children’s sensitive skin.
However Pink, at 4, is MORE than happy to wear a lovely hat. And pretty cotton clothes in the sunshine are a given joy. But cream? Stand still and have it, you know, smeared on? Notsomuch.
Her Daddy is a bit of a genius.
She was loud (and I’ll admit a little screechy) in her protestations that she didn’t NEEEEEED cream as he was attempting to cover her face at the weekend. He told her, in a big scary Hollywood voice that actually she did. She listened wide-eyed as he told her that the sun was a Great Big Ball Of Fire In The Sky, and when the sky was blue it meant the Fire was Extra Super Hot, and the cream in the bottle would stop it burning her.
Of course – she’s 4. So she immediately asked in a world-weary and sceptical voice “But HOW?”
I smugly waited for Daddy to explain the science of UV filters to her, in words of one syllable.
Instead, I heard possibly the best parenting genius of the year.
“See the letters on the bottle? What do they say?”
“Exactly.” He whisked the bottle rapidly away before she could read any more and flourished it at her in a dramatic fashion. “Nivea-oHhhh-so”
Her mouth made a perfect silent “oh” as she allowed the cream to be applied without a further murmur, then walked tall and proud straight to her cohort Boy.
“The sun won’t burn me now Boy. D’you see? See?” she turned her face each way for him to look at her pale cheeks “Daddy used the Harry Potter Spell Cream. S’MAGIC.”
She beamed happily, looking across the garden at her AWESOME Daddy. Who knows spells good enough to stop the sun burning.
Available in a lotion and a Spray, the RRP is £16.84