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Nope, you’re definitely allergic Toby, you can’t have your face done again my love.

Face paint. Ugh.

I’m not a big face painting fan as it is, it smears, it rubs off on clothes and it is a bigger to get off your skin, but since discovering that Toby has a reaction to it on his face, I’ve come to loath it.

We had our first allergic reaction to face paint after Reuben’s first summer school party last year, just before he started school. We went because he was a part of pre-reception and both boys had their faces painted, and Toby (true to form) fell asleep in the car I the way home. So we left him in the face paint, no big deal, it would wipe off the next morning and it wouldn’t be an issue right?

Wrong. He woke up the next morning and his whole face was burning hot, swollen and totally red. Nothing we did seemed to take out the sting, and we came to the conclusion that this was entirely our fault for leaving him in it over night. Bad parents. Epic fail.

This year, when the summer party came Reuben immediately wanted his face painted, which means, as it standard,Toby wanted it done too. We told them no red, and they could have their faces painted but it must come off before home time, which would only be an hour. Still, as the paint came off, Toby’s face (fortunately not sore or swollen this time) was BRIGHT RED. Hot and bright red. So there is now no doubt in our minds that his face will almost certainly react to the paint, which is big frustrating for us and for him. I’ve heard a lot of talk about different trying out brands and paint colours. Every one of them can have a different reaction, however I honestly think if you have a reaction (like Toby) to something like Snazaroo then you need to accept reactions are imminent. Sorry, but it is better to just suck it up and be safe

So what alternatives to face painting are there?

1.Try arms and legs!

Tobes has had a stencil design done on his arms before with absolutely no reaction at all. Winner winner! This means that while everyone is getting their mushes slathered in face paint, Toby can still (sort of) join in. It takes the edge off his pleas for face painting.

2. Head to the pantry.

You can still paint that face!! If your little one hasn’t had a reaction to cornflour or powered sugar you can use that with things like strawberry to dye it red, turmeric for yellow, chocolate sauce for brown…. Ok, it’s not as bright and awesome but at least they can join in.

3. Use organic make up

Organic eye shadows are perfect – silver, blue, green… Is there a colour limit? It might be a little on the costly side to bash out a full spider man face, but there is something to be said for small and delicate face paints like a spider on its web, the silver eyeshadow for the web. Boom.

4. Sudocrem

Never had a reaction? You can use the smallest amount of food colouring to get your colour, and bobs your uncle, face paint a la tush cream.

Do you have any other tips for what to use to help your little ones who can’t use face paint?

H x

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