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A Team Role Guide To Using Sunscreen

With a sweltering summer just around the corner, and dreaming of our summer holidays by the pool... This blog was prompted by the constant chat of 'how many months to go?' and 'have you packed yet?' combined with a few red noses and necks - who forgot the suncream this time? We realised that we all have rather different approaches to suncream...


Sun, what sun?

Monitor Evaluator

Has been in cahoots with the Specialist (before they got all ‘obsessive’). Has looked at the benefits of the different factors and decided that if they do have to go outside in the sun, factor 40 is the logical choice. But actually, on reflection, the safest option would be to stay inside and only go outside after 9pm. So, that’s what they will be doing. What do you mean ‘killjoy’?


Has done their research. Knows that using half the required amount of sunscreen only provides the square root of the SPF; that SPF 30 keeps out 97% and SPF 50, 98%. Completely forgot to buy some though. Was too caught up with ‘A Controlled Trial of Objective Measures of Sunscreen and Moisturizing Lotion…’

Resource Investigator

Has found a new start-up (it was a colleague of a contact they met last year when in Portugal) that is selling THE latest sunscreen. Contacted them and has got free samples in return for feedback and plenty of social media exposure. Job done. Their enthusiasm means that everyone is covered in the stuff by 9am and are uploading stories onto Insta. Gets bored by Wednesday.


Makes sure everyone is covered – literally and figuratively. Is ready with the aloe vera and some words of comfort. They manage to get to the supermarket and back to replenish stocks; find a special Octonauts bottle for little Jessica and pick up some Anthisan – someone will get stung soon – without anyone realising.


Ensures that everyone knows that they need to keep applying, and why they need to keep applying. Decided that applying sunscreen to a wriggly 4-year-old is best delegated to someone far better suited to the task. In fact, manages not to have to apply anyone else’s! Keeps a calm head whilst chaos erupts around them.


Plans to reapply every two hours— every one hour if swimming. Has an alarm on phone to ensure that they keep to the schedule. Using same make as last year. Worked well in Spain, so will work well in France – although why we couldn’t go to Spain again this year is beyond them.

Completer Finisher

Wants to know if you’ve applied enough. Are you sure? Did you remember to do that difficult bit on your neck? Your ears? Look - just give them the bottle, you’re not doing it properly. No-one else can be trusted to get to every patch of uncovered skin. But who will they trust to apply theirs?


On, done, in the pool. Sorted.

What's your approach to suncream? Fill in a SPI, get some Observer Assessments, and find out how true this list is!

Happy summer!

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