Soltan, the UK’s No1 5* UVA protection suncare brand, figures that over half (51%) of parents choose a sun cream based only on its SPF rating to prevent sun burn, without realising the significance of the star rating that indicates protection against long term, permanent skin damage caused by UVA.

The research has been released as Soltan launches a controversial and thought-provoking campaign that aims to help parents understand the risk of exposing their family to UVA damage that is as permanent as a tattoo, if they use a sun cream with less than 5*UVA protection.

“At Soltan we believe that there should be no compromise where sun care is concerned. Obviously parents are already thinking about sunscreen but we’re encouraging them to make sun protection a top priority this summer, and only choose 5* UVA protection. Either you have fully protected your family with a 5*rated sun cream or you haven’t,” Soltan Suncare Expert, Clare O’Connor
The survey of 1,000 parents of children aged 14 and under revealed that while 87% of parents understand that it is possible to get permanent skin damage from the sun, 40% believe that UVA damage is short term and lasts no longer than a week.

The lack of parental understanding of the dangers of UVA rays comes despite previous education campaigns, Soltan’s research shows that:

  • Just 14% of parents consciously choose a sun cream based on its UVA rating
  • Over a third (39%) of parents with primary school aged children do not consider UVA rating at all when choosing a sun cream
  • Over half (55%) do not even know what the UVA rating is

The research shows that whilst parents do all they can to protect their children from sun protection, with 2/3 reapplying sun cream after every time their children have been in the water and 80% of parents making sure their children wear a hat as well as sun cream, the lack of awareness of the need for 5* UVA protection means they are still at risk of permanent skin damage from the sun Combined with the fact that nearly a quarter (123%) of a person’s lifetime sun exposure is acquired before age 18 there is a real need for regular and effective sun protection.