Forget about the itsy-bitsy bikini. When it comes to summer in Saskatchewan, parents have bigger concerns than fashion.
Many at local spray parks in Saskatoon are opting for full coverage. Sheila Mathies brought her son and daughter down to River Landing. Their water ready uniform includes swim bottoms and full rash guard t-shirts.
"I'm more practical," said Mathies. "The more sun coverage, the better with both of them. I look for a swim top and I wear a swim top myself for protection."
Cover from the sun is top of mind at Cravings Mom & Baby. Nicole Rothery runs the store and sees hundreds of parents looking for the perfect swimsuit. "It just depends on what they like." Rothery explained, "It has to be cute and sun protection is important. If you're not wanting to worry much about putting sunscreen everywhere on them, you should go with something with more coverage."
Sun safety aside, there is plenty of talk of what's appropriate for children. "I don't think an infant should wear a bikini," said Christy Miller holding her toddler. "I wouldn't wear a bikini so I wouldn't make my toddler wear one either."
Taylor Bassingthwaite makes sure her little red head Sadie is fully covered. "No judgement but for me a bikini is not something I'd be comfortable with." She explained, "Call me radical but I think it hypersexualizes children a bit."
The Canadian Cancer Society notes that fashion concerns should always take a back seat when it comes to children in the sun, and that babies should always be out of direct sunlight. It also recommends older children wear loose fitting clothing, hats and, of course, sunscreen.