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Guide to the Safest Baby Sunscreen and Sunscreen for Kids

Written by Irina Webb

Do you want to be sure you are using safe baby sun protection on your child?  In this easy-to-follow guide, you will learn how to identify a safe baby sunscreen based on its ingredients.  Moreover, we will categorize popular sunscreens – such as Neutrogena, Cerave, Coppertone, Blue Lizard, Thinkbaby, Arbonne, Badger baby sunscreen and many others – into what are, in my opinion, the worst, bad, better, and best.  Knowing which brands contain non-toxic ingredients and still work well will help you choose the best natural sunscreen for kids and babies.  Furthermore, you will be able to make an informed decision as to which is better to use – a baby sunscreen spray or lotion.   To pick a non-toxic sunscreen for yourself, visit this Best Non-Toxic Face Sunscreen Guide.  Interested in self-tanners?  Check out the IRLFY shop for Sunless Tanners options!

A photo of a mother holding a baby and applying safest baby sunscreen on her.

Knowledge helps you make the right choices.

To start with, any subject related to babies and kids resonates with me.  Indeed, I still remember the challenge of finding safe products for my baby boy.  Actually, that was how the  I Read Labels for You website started – with sharing my research into baby shampoos. 

Since then, I have investigated many other products and industries.  Now, you can take advantage of years of research, which I have compiled into e-books and blog posts.  Thus, you will surely benefit from my Diaper Rating List and Baby Wipes Rating List e-books.  Also, consider reading this post to get help with finding a non-toxic crib mattress for your baby.  Additionally, choose a safe laundry detergent for your baby’s clothes in this Guide to the Safest Laundry Detergents.

Although it is impossible to avoid all toxins in life, even small steps can change the quality of your life drastically.  For instance, it is a good idea to install a water filter system and switch to safe cookware.  In fact, the changes I have made in my life have helped me recover from Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis.  (Learn about that and another autoimmune disease I’m recovering from in my blog posts about breast implants and explant surgery.)

I believe that self-education into non-toxic living helps us as parents make the right choices for our children’s well-being.  So, let’s discuss how you can identify the safest baby sunscreen and the best natural sunscreen for kids.

The Most Effective Baby Sunscreen

No doubt, a sunscreen for kids is effective only when it protects your child from UV rays.  Out of the three types of UV light radiation (UVA, UVB, and UVC), we want to shield our children from UVA and UVB rays. 

Indeed, UVA rays have a longer wavelength, are not absorbed by the ozone layer, and can penetrate to the middle layer of the skin (the dermis).  In turn, UVA rays are divided into UVA-I (340 nm – 400 nm) and UVA-II (315 nm – 340 nm) (source).

Next, UVB rays, though shorter and mostly absorbed by the ozone layer, still reach the Earth’s surface and the outer layer of our skin (the epidermis). 

As for UVC rays, they get completely absorbed by the ozone layer and the earth’s atmosphere (source and source).

Keep in mind that SPF indicates the duration of protection from UVB rays only.  (Stay with me to learn more about health concerns related to SPF!)

The ingredients responsible for filtering UV rays appear on the product label as “active ingredients” and are of either chemical or mineral origin.

Ideally, you want your baby sunscreen to be free of chemical UV filters such as oxybenzone, octinoxate, avobenzone, octocrylene, octisalate, and homosalate.  Instead, you want to find the best natural sunscreen for kids with mineral UV filters such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide.  Here is why.

Baby on the beach

Why I avoid cosmetic products with chemical UV filters.

To begin, the EWG summarizes the concerns caused by chemical UV filters.  Plus, the European Union Chemicals Agency (ECHA) and other scientific sources, including PubMed, reveal the following.

First, oxybenzone (aka benzophenone-3) is very toxic to aquatic life and is under assessment as an endocrine disruptor (ECHA).  In fact, animal studies show that benzophenone-3 can act as an estrogen.  It is also considered an allergen and a carcinogen.

Second, octinoxate is toxic to aquatic life, with long-lasting effects.  It is also under assessment as persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic and as an endocrine disruptor (ECHA). 

Third, avobenzone is under assessment as persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic, too (ECHA).  Further, this study suggests that avobenzone causes certain dysfunction in a woman’s body during early pregnancy.  Additionally, this study implies that avobenzone functions as an obesogen that can disrupt normal lipid metabolism, which can lead to obesity.

Next, octocrylene is also under assessment as persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic.  Plus, it is very toxic to aquatic life with long-lasting effects (ECHA). 

As for octisalate, the FDA believes there is insufficient data to determine its safety and effectiveness in a baby sunscreen.  Besides, it is very toxic to aquatic life with long-lasting effects (ECHA).

Finally, although the ECHA has not registered any hazards connected to homosalate, some studies have.  For instance, this study suggests that homosalate is toxic to living cells and damaging to DNA.  And according to this study, homosalate is toxic to human trophoblast cells that help protect an embryo in the uterus.

Why I prefer a mineral sunscreen for kids.

In my opinion, a kid sunscreen that contains chemical UV filters is far from being called the safest baby sunscreen.  

Alternatively, in its 2019 proposal to sunscreen regulations, the FDA states that zinc oxide and titanium dioxide mineral filters are generally recognized as safe and effective (“GRASE”), based on available scientific data.

The FDA opinion of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide

Unlike chemical filters that absorb UV radiation, mineral filters – zinc oxide and titanium dioxide – reflect or scatter UV radiation.  However, reportedly, while they are both effective against UVB rays, zinc oxide is more effective for UVA-I and UVA-II (source and source). 

Also, generally recognized as safe, neither zinc oxide nor titanium dioxide is known to have any negative health effects.  However, please know that when inhaled as dust, powder or aerosol, zinc oxide and titanium dioxide may cause harm to lungs (source).  This is one of the reasons I do not advocate adult or baby sunscreen sprays.  (Read on to see other reasons for choosing a sun lotion for kids over spray!)

What You Want to Know about Your Baby Sunscreen SPF

A photo of mother and baby on the sand.

First, the FDA warns against adopting a popular misconception that the sun protection factor (SPF) equals the duration of solar exposure.  Rather than time, SPF relates to the amount of solar exposure, impacted by many factors, for example, sun intensity.  Indeed, one hour of sun exposure at 9 am may result in the same amount of solar energy as 15 minutes of exposure at 1 pm.  Bottom line, an SPF 15 does not mean you can stay in the sun 15 hours without getting sunburn. 

Second, this study suggests that high SPF values create a false sense of security by making users believe they are fully protected from sun damage.  As a result, they tend to spend more time in the sun, exposing themselves to risks caused by solar energy.    

Most importantly, SPF indicates the duration of protection from UVB rays only (not from UVA!), i.e., from getting sunburn.   

Suppose a baby’s skin burns after 10 minutes of sun exposure (with no sunscreen on).  Take this number – 10 minutes – and multiply it by the SPF value of your kid sunscreen.  Thus, technically, SPF 30 should protect your baby from UVB rays for 300 minutes (10×30=300), which is 5 hours.  However, these are relative numbers because there are many variables (e.g., the sunscreen layer thickness, skin type, sun intensity etc.). 

Therefore, I would stick to the general recommendation of re-applying a baby sunscreen every 2 hours or immediately after prolonged contact with water.

Here is Why I Do Not Use Sunscreen Sprays

During my last vacation on the beach, I literally felt like a victim of an aerosol attack.  Indeed, someone nearby used an aerosol sunscreen that blew into my face, exposing me to unwanted chemicals.  I see several problems with using a sunscreen spray, especially in an open public area such as the beach or the pool. 

First, it is a matter of simple ethics.  The seaside tends to be windy, and the contents of an aerosol propelled substance end up on other people’s clothes, bodies, and lungs. 

Second, applying a kid sunscreen lotion on your child, you can tell how much you are using and how thoroughly.  Conversely, with sprays and the wind (if used outside), there is no way to tell if you have used enough.  Hence, potentially, a baby sunscreen lotion or cream provides more protection. 

Third, the Cancer Council of Australia warns against the use of aerosol sunscreens.  Thus, research conducted at the Queensland University of Technology indicates that it is extremely difficult to get good levels of UV protection from sprays.  Additionally, the use of propellants may dilute the sunscreen, causing it to have a lower SPF than advertised!

Above all, there is a risk of inhaling carcinogenic substances when using a baby sunscreen spray.  Indeed, consider the following information.

A photo of a woman applying baby sunscreen spray on a child.

Beware of inhaling carcinogenic substances when using sprays!

To begin, in 2021 an independent laboratory VALISURE detected high levels of benzene in specific batches of some sunscreen products.  (For your information, benzene is listed among chemicals known to the state of California to cause cancer or reproductive toxicity.) 

Specifically, out of 14 products that revealed 2 ppm benzene or higher, 12 products were in the form of spray.  And out of 26 products that contained 0.1 ppm to 2 ppm benzene, 20 were aerosols. 

By the way, none of the kid sunscreen products in the “better” and “best” categories are on the list of products that tested positive for benzene.  Those products in the “better” and “best” categories that were tested by VALISURE are on the list of sun care products that showed no benzene.  

Further, even zinc oxide and titanium dioxide that are generally recognized as safe may cause harm to lungs when inhaled in the form of airborne particles (source).    

Moreover, titanium dioxide is a suspected lung carcinogen if its particles/dust are airborne and inhaled.  In other words, it is potentially harmful in sprays and loose powders (not in creams, lotions, or pressed powders).  The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classifies airborne and inhaled dust of titanium dioxide as ‘possibly carcinogenic to humans’ (source and source).

Therefore, although I researched both baby sunscreen lotions and sprays, I decided not to include sunscreen sprays into worst-bad-better-best categorization.  However, if you choose to use spray, here are some safer options.

Safer options of kid sunscreen sprays

The reasons I consider the products below to be safer kid and baby sunscreen spray options are as follows:

  • They do not contain titanium dioxide.
  • There are no ingredients of high to medium concern (see the explanation in the next section).
ProductLow concern ingredients
All Good Kid’s Mineral Sunscreen Spray SPF 30⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid ⚠️Methyl Dihydroabietate
Babo Botanicals Baby Skin Mineral Sunscreen Pump Spray Fragrance Free SPF 30⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid  ⚠️Methyl Dihydroabietate ⚠️Safflower Seed Oil is not organic
Hello Bello Baby Mineral Sunscreen Spray SPF 50⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid ⚠️Capryloyl Glycerin/Sebacic Acid Copolymer ⚠️Methyl Dihydroabietate
Hello Bello Kid’s Mineral Sunscreen Spray SPF 50⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid ⚠️Capryloyl Glycerin/Sebacic Acid Copolymer ⚠️Methyl Dihydroabietate

How to use: To make sure your child is not inhaling the vapors, spray some baby sunscreen into your hands.  Then, rub it onto your child’s skin and face, avoiding the eyes and mouth. 

The Premise Behind My Categorization

For starters, the focal point of this guide to the safest baby sunscreen is the safety of ingredients, not the product’s effectiveness.  Hence, I have grouped kid sunscreen products into the worst, bad, better, and best categories based on available ingredient safety data.  Please bear in mind that these are my opinions only, formed from thorough research and study of scientific sources.

Thus, the products I consider the “worst” are those that use chemical UV filters as active ingredients (e.g., octisalate).

Conversely, the baby sunscreens in the “bad” category do not use chemical UV filters.  Yet, they still contain inactive ingredients of high to medium and low concern.  (More on inactive ingredients in the next section.)

Next, the “better” sunscreens, in my opinion, are those without any ingredients of high to medium concern.  Nevertheless, they may contain some ingredients that I consider to be of low concern.

Finally, the safest baby sunscreen products in the “best” category have no concerning ingredients.  However, I have also included some products with low concern ingredients in the best category, to give you more effective options.  Specifically, based on the EWG sunscreen rating, they should protect well.  

Ultimately, I believe the best natural sunscreen for kids has a higher concentration of zinc oxide, no ingredients of high to medium concern, and as few ingredients of low concern as possible. 

Check out the table below describing what I consider potentially concerning inactive ingredients.

A photo of a girl playing in the pool.

Potentially Concerning Inactive Ingredients in a Baby Sunscreen

To clarify, I find the ingredients marked with ❌ of high to medium concern; and those marked with ⚠️ – of low concern.  

IngredientConcern
❌Chlorphenesin– toxic to human meibomian gland epithelial cells (in the eyelids) (source)
– may cause skin irritation (source)
– causes serious eye and skin irritation (ECHA)
– suspected of being persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic (ECHA)
❌Cyclopentasiloxane– persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic (source)
– may contain residues of cyclotetrasiloxane suspected of being toxic to reproduction (source)
❌Ethoxylated ingredients (PPG, PEG, -eth)– may be contaminated with carcinogenic 1,4 dioxane (learn more here)
❌Phenoxyethanol– may be irritating to skin, eyes, and lungs (learn more here)
⚠️Alumina, Aluminum Stearate– can penetrate the skin and accumulate in the body, contributing to “body burden” leading to health issues  
– may increase the risk of the oxidative damage in the skin (source)
⚠️Botanicals are not organic (oils, extracts etc.)– may contain residues of pesticides
⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid– may cause irritation/allergy on eczema-prone skin (source)
⚠️Capryloyl Glycerin/Sebacic Acid Copolymer– no safety data (meaning we don’t know enough about this yet)
⚠️Magnesium Sulfate– may be contaminated with heavy metals (learn more here)
⚠️Methyl Dihydroabietate– no safety data
⚠️Mica– may be contaminated with heavy metals (learn more here)
⚠️Polyester-7, 8– no safety data
⚠️Propylene Glycol– may cause allergic and irritant contact dermatitis (source)
⚠️Trimethylpentanediol/Adapic Acid/Glycerin Crosspolymer– no safety data

Obviously, the safest baby sunscreen should have none of these ingredients. 

Products in the Worst Category

There is only one sunscreen for kids among those I have looked into that falls in the “worst” category.  The main reason I consider it the worst is that it contains octisalate, a chemical UV filter.  In addition to octisalate, it features some other ingredients I refer to as “concerning,” explained in the section above.

ProductConcerns
Blue Lizard Kids Mineral-Based Sunscreen SPF 50❌Octisalate (5%) ❌Phenoxyethanol ❌Ethoxylated ingredients (PEG-7 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone) ⚠️Alumina ⚠️Aluminum Stearate

Sunscreens for Kids and Babies in the Bad Category

For starters, the separating line between the “worst” and the “bad” categories is chemical UV filters.  Namely, the products in the “bad” category do not use them, but they still contain ingredients I consider concerning.  

Since this has turned out to be the largest category, I divided it into three groups: baby sunscreens with SPF under 50, baby sunscreens with SPF 50+, and sunscreens for kids.

Baby Sunscreens with SPF under 50

ProductConcerns
Alba Botanica Baby Mineral Sunscreen SPF 45❌Phenoxyethanol ⚠️Alumina ⚠️Magnesium Sulfate ⚠️Some botanicals are not organic
Arbonne ABC Baby Care Sunscreen Lotion SPF 30❌Phenoxyethanol ❌Chlorphenesin ⚠️Magnesium Sulfate ⚠️Botanicals are not organic
Cerave Baby Sunscreen Lotion SPF 45  ❌Phenoxyethanol ❌Ceteth-20 (ethoxylated) ❌Ceteth-25 (ethoxylated) ❌Oleth-25 (ethoxylated) ❌PEG-100 Stearate (ethoxylated) ❌PEG-75 Stearate (ethoxylated) ❌Steareth-20 (ethoxylated) ⚠️Alumina ⚠️Aluminum Stearate ⚠️Mica ⚠️Botanicals are not organic

Baby Sunscreens with SPF 50+

ProductConcerns
Aveeno Baby Continuous Protection® Sensitive Skin Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50  ❌Phenoxyethanol ❌Chlorphenesin ❌Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone (ethoxylated) ⚠️Botanicals are not organic
Baby Bum Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50❌Phenoxyethanol ⚠️Capryloyl Glycerin/Sebacic Acid Copolymer ⚠️Methyl Dihydroabietate ⚠️Botanicals are not organic
Babyganics Mineral Sunscreen SPF 50❌Phenoxyethanol ⚠️Alumina ⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid ⚠️Trimethylpentanediol/Adapic Acid/Glycerin Crosspolymer ⚠️Some botanicals are not organic
Banana Boat Baby Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50+❌Phenoxyethanol ❌Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone (ethoxylated) ❌Lauryl PEG-8 Dimethicone (ethoxylated) ❌PEG-8 (ethoxylated) ⚠️Alumina
Blue Lizard Baby Mineral Sunscreen SPF 50+❌Phenoxyethanol ❌Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone (ethoxylated) ❌PEG-7 Hydrogenated Castor Oil (ethoxylated) ⚠️Alumina ⚠️Aluminum Stearate
Coppertone Pure & Simple Baby Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50  ❌Phenoxyethanol ❌Cyclopentasiloxane ❌PEG-12 Dimethicone Crosspolymer (ethoxylated) ❌Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone (ethoxylated) ⚠️Propylene Glycol
Goddess Garden Baby Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50❌Phenoxyethanol ⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid ⚠️Capryloyl Glycerin/Sebacic Acid Copolymer ⚠️Methyl Dihydroabietate ⚠️Some botanicals are not organic
Neutrogena Pure & Free® Baby Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50  ❌Phenoxyethanol ❌Chlorphenesin ❌Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone (ethoxylated)  ⚠️Botanicals are not organic

Sunscreens for Kids in the Bad Category

ProductConcerns
Alba Botanica Kids Mineral Sunscreen fragrance free SPF 30❌Phenoxyethanol ⚠️Alumina ⚠️Magnesium Sulfate ⚠️Some botanicals are not organic
Aveeno Kids Continuous Protection® Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50❌Phenoxyethanol ❌Chlorphenesin ❌Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone (ethoxylated) ⚠️Botanicals are not organic
Babyganics Kids Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50+

❌Phenoxyethanol ⚠️Alumina ⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid ⚠️Trimethylpentanediol/Adapic Acid/Glycerin Crosspolymer ⚠️Some botanicals are not organic
Banana Boat Kids Mineral Lotion SPF 50❌Phenoxyethanol ❌Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone (ethoxylated) ❌Lauryl PEG-8 Dimethicone (ethoxylated) ❌PEG-8 (ethoxylated) ⚠️Alumina
Coppertone Pure & Simple Kids Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50❌Phenoxyethanol ❌Cyclopentasiloxane ❌PEG-12 Dimethicone Crosspolymer (ethoxylated) ❌Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone (ethoxylated) ⚠️Propylene Glycol
Goddess Garden Kids Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50❌Phenoxyethanol ⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid ⚠️Capryloyl Glycerin/Sebacic Acid Copolymer ⚠️Methyl Dihydroabietate ⚠️Some botanicals are not organic
Neutrogena Sheer Zinc Kids Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50❌Phenoxyethanol ❌Chlorphenesin ❌Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone (ethoxylated) ⚠️Botanicals are not organic
Tubby Todd Mineral Sunscreen SPF 50❌Phenoxyethanol ❌Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone (ethoxylated) ❌Glycereth-2 Cocoate (ethoxylated)
Up & Up Kids Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50  ❌Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone (ethoxylated) ❌Lauryl PEG-8 Dimethicone (ethoxylated) ❌PEG-8 (ethoxylated)
Mother and daughter on the beach applying kid sunscreen.

Products in the Better Category

ProductConcerns
Bare Republic Mineral Baby Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50⚠️Polyester-7 ⚠️Botanicals are not organic ⚠️In my opinion, the concentration of zinc oxide (12%) is too low for SPF 50.
California Baby Sunscreen Lotion Super Sensitive SPF 30+⚠️Mica ⚠️Magnesium Stearate ⚠️Botanicals are not organic ⚠️No zinc oxide
California Kids Sunscreen Lotion Super Sensitive Tinted SPF 30+⚠️Mica ⚠️Magnesium Stearate ⚠️Botanicals are not organic ⚠️No zinc oxide
Hello Bello Baby Prebiotic Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 55+⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid ⚠️Capryloyl Glycerin/Sebacic Acid Copolymer ⚠️Methyl Dihydroabietate ⚠️Some botanicals are not organic
Hello Bello Kids Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid ⚠️Capryloyl Glycerin/Sebacic Acid Copolymer ⚠️Methyl Dihydroabietate ⚠️Some botanicals are not organic
Supergoop! PLAY 100% Mineral Sunscreen Lotion with Green Algae SPF 50⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid ⚠️Polyester-7 ⚠️Polyester-8 ⚠️Methyl Dihydroabietate ⚠️Botanicals are not organic

The Best Natural Sunscreen for Kids and Babies

ProductConcerns
All Good Kid’s Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 30⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid ⚠️Capryloyl Glycerin/Sebacic Acid Copolymer
Attitude Baby & Kids Fragrance Free Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30None
Attitude Oatmeal Sensitive Natural Kids and Baby Sunscreen Lotion, Unscented SPF 30None
Babo Botanicals Baby Skin Mineral Fragrance-Free Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid  ⚠️Methyl Dihydroabietate ⚠️Safflower Seed Oil is not organic
Earth Mama Baby Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 40  None
Earth Mama Kids Uber-Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 40None
Pipette Mineral Sunscreen SPF 50⚠️Methyl Dihydroabietate ⚠️Some Botanicals are not organic
Supergoop! Sunny Screen Lotion Babies + Kiddos SPF 50⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid  ⚠️Methyl Dihydroabietate ⚠️ Botanicals are not organic
Thinkbaby Clear Zinc Sunscreen Lotion SPF 30⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid  ⚠️Magnesium Sulfate ⚠️Botanicals are not organic
Thinkbaby Sunscreen Stick SPF 30None
Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen SPF 50⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid  ⚠️Magnesium Sulfate ⚠️Botanicals are not organic
Thinksport Kids Clear Zinc Sunscreen SPF 30⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid  ⚠️Magnesium Sulfate ⚠️Botanicals are not organic
Thinksport Kids Safe Sunscreen SPF 50+⚠️Caprylhydroxamic Acid  ⚠️Magnesium Sulfate ⚠️Botanicals are not organic
Thinksport Kids Sunscreen Stick SPF 30None

A Note on Badger Baby Sunscreen

Initially, I placed Badger sunscreen for kids in the “best” category.  Then I removed it, following a concerning FDA investigatory letter to Badger.  The letter states in part, “This warning letter summarizes significant violations of Current Good Manufacturing Practice (CGMP) regulations for finished pharmaceuticals.”

Concerned, I reached out to the manufacturer to determine the status of this investigation and received the following response:

Thank you for reaching out to us! Our Badger staff and leadership are working diligently with our FDA experts to comply with the additional documentation requests to resolve this matter. We have already addressed many of their concerns and are in the final stages of completing this work. All Badger products, including sunscreens, are rigorously tested to meet the highest quality, purity, safety, and efficacy before being approved for final sale.

I will update this review based on any new evidence and response provided by the FDA and the manufacturer, and may well ultimately place Badger products in the “best” category.

Summary of the Safest Baby Sunscreen Post

To sum up, in this guide, you have learned how to identify the best natural sunscreen for kids based on its ingredients. 

In addition, you have been able to see which category (and why) I assigned for Arbonne, Blue Lizard, Cerave, Coppertone, Neutrogena, Thinkbaby, Badger, and many others.

Plus, based on the knowledge you gained about aerosol products, you can make an informed decision as to whether to use a baby sunscreen spray or lotion. 

Most importantly, there are many variables that affect a sunscreen’s protection ability: solar energy intensity, duration of exposure, SPF, skin type, geographical location, wind, water, sweat, sunscreen quantity and layer thickness, thoroughness and frequency of application etc.  As consumers, we cannot be sure that sunscreens will work as promised by the manufacturers because their SPF testing techniques may differ from real-life scenarios.  Neither are we privy to the intricacies of manufacturing processes and interaction of ingredients in the product.

Therefore, it is a good idea to follow the general rules for sun protection, especially when it comes to children.  For instance, when at the beach, my son wears a long-sleeved shirt or rash guard and a hat.  Also, we avoid sunbathing during the most active sun hours from noon till 4pm.  In addition, we re-apply sunscreen every two hours, particularly after contact with water or excessive sweating.

For non-toxic face sunscreen options, visit this Best Non-Toxic Face Sunscreen Guide.  And for self-tanners, check out the IRLFY shop for Sunless Tanners listing.

4 thoughts on “Guide to the Safest Baby Sunscreen and Sunscreen for Kids”

  1. I just found out my son is allergic to zinc oxide. Do you have any suggestions for a safe sunscreen that doesn’t include zinc oxide?

    1. Hi Lisa! Thank you for reaching out to I Read Labels for You! In our post about Baby and Kid Sunscreen, we mention two products without zinc oxide. They are in the “better” category: California Baby and California Kid sunscreen products. We hope this helps!

  2. Hi. I appreciate all these reviews and information! I see that “Hello Bello Kids Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50” is in the better category and also best category. Is this a typo or am I missing something? Thanks.

    1. Hi Vanessa! Thank you for drawing this to our attention! We have removed this product from the “best” category. We appreciate your feedback and help!!!

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