Before you bash JWoww's baby photo, get your facts right

Jul 11, 2016 at 11:29 a.m. ET

Jenni "JWoww" Farley faced a backlash on Instagram Sunday, after the mom of two posted a cute pic of her youngest, 2-month-old son Greyson, in his dad Roger Mathews’ arms in a swimming pool.

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Some of the Jersey Shore star's followers questioned whether the couple was putting their baby at risk by having him out in the sun without sunscreen, and the mom was quick to respond to their criticism. She posted a comment saying she felt like "schooling people" on her previous post, adding that where she really needed to "educate trolls" was on the whole baby sunscreen debate.

Her follow-up post was a picture of the homemade sunscreen she had applied to Greyson before he went in the sun "probably for a total of 3 minutes," and she listed the ingredients she used to make it: coconut oil, zinc oxide and carrot seed oil.


"My son actually does have sunscreen on," JWoww continued. "It's the same concept as diaper cream. Probably even better than the crap shit you lather your children in. Remember ass holes im in the tanning industry and pride myself on knowing this."

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All the people who bashed JWoww for taking her baby into the sun without sunscreen should be eating double portions of humble pie right now. Her baby did have sunscreen on. But apart from that — and more important — the FDA advises against putting sunscreen on infants younger than 6 months because the chemicals are too harsh for their delicate, sensitive skin. Instead of sunscreen, the best option is to keep babies out of the sun altogether, and if there's no natural shade, create your own with a parasol or stroller canopy. Lightweight clothing with long sleeves and brimmed hats will also help prevent a baby getting sunburned.

Obviously JWoww's all-natural sunscreen doesn't contain any of the chemicals found in sun protection products. And she's not the only mom to use homemade sunscreen on her kids' skin. But in the absence of any official guidelines on natural sunscreen, it's best to simply follow the FDA recommendations. There's no way to know exactly how much SPF is in a homemade sunscreen since there are varying sources of information about how much SPF is in carrier oils and essential oils.

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Basically, err to the side of caution both when it comes to babies and the sun and to judging the parenting decisions of others.