Before you head out to the beach, pool or playground this summer, be sure to study your SPF. The available selection of sunscreens can be overwhelming, and it’s often difficult to determine which products are both effective AND free of harsh chemicals. We’ve rounded up our favorites (and the Environmental Working Group’s, too!) to ensure you and your squad can enjoy the warm weather days without worries. Cheers to sunshine!
Babyganics Mineral-Based Baby Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50
Non-allergenic and tear-free, this mineral-based, broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection offers smooth application. Pediatrician and dermatologist approved, the lightweight consistency is nourishing on delicate skin. Did we mention the awesome price tag?
Available at target.com, $.9.99.
Sunology Mineral Sunscreen for Kids SPF 50
With a formula inspired by nature, this all-natural sunscreen won’t burn the skin or eyes. Active ingredients include zinc oxide and titanium dioxide and it's formulated without oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate, homosalate, PABA, or parabens. An essential oil complex helps to moisturize skin, and it’s completely fragrance-free.
Available at sunology.com, $14.99.
Blue Lizard Australian Sunscreen, Baby, SPF 30+
The folks down under know good sun protection: Blue Lizard Australian sunscreens have been pediatrician recommended and dermatologist trusted for over 20 years. They contain no skin-irritating fragrances or parabens, and this one is water-resistant for up to 40 minutes. With 10% zinc oxide and 5% titanium dioxide, it provides true broad-spectrum protection from UV rays for the most vulnerable skin.
Available at amazon.com, $24.99.
All Good Kid's Sunscreen, SPF 30
This lightweight sunscreen is water-resistant for up to 80 minutes but still doesn’t feel greasy. Organic green tea, rose hips, and buriti oil repair damaged skin, and chamomile soothes sensitive babes. Non-nanoparticle zinc oxide offers the most effective broad-spectrum sun protection possible without the danger of being absorbed by marine life or being disruptive to reef growth processes.
Available at amazon.com, $15.19.
Hawaiian Sol Sol Kid Kare, SPF 50
Containing aloe vera, hibiscus, and extracts of wild pansy, cucumber, and melon, this biodegradable sunscreen smells so delicious that your kiddos just might tolerate application. Reef safe, no nano-technology is used in the emulsification process of this sunscreen—but with 19% zinc oxide, it still provides potent protection against UVA and UVB rays.
Available at hawaiiansol.net, $18.00.
COOLA Suncare Baby Mineral Sunscreen Stick, SPF 50
COOLA’s tinted moisturizer might already be on your bathroom shelf, so consider adding their pediatrician-tested sun stick to your baby’s beach bag. It’s 70%+ organic and holds up wonderfully after water exposure. We love that it contains tamanu oil, which functions as a natural UV protectant with healing and anti-inflammatory properties. Sage extract acts as an antiseptic and helps heal skin—and a strong lineup of shea butter, coconut oil, and avocado oil hydrates and soothes.
Available at walmart.com, $19.59.
Tom's of Maine Baby Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 30 – They make more than toothpaste! Protect your baby’s skin with Tom’s of Main’s “just what is necessary” approach using only five ingredients. The fragrance-free formula provides broad-spectrum SPF 30 through zinc oxide to ensure your baby has safe and effective protection against warm summer rays. Pediatrician tested, it’s also hypoallergenic; free of artificial colors, fragrances, and preservatives; and is never, ever tested on animals.
Available at amazon.com, $11.95.
Kiss My Face Organics Kids Mineral Sunscreen, SPF 30
Formulated with 87% certified organic ingredients, this hypoallergenic sunscreen is water resistant for up to 80 minutes. It is made with non-nano mineral only actives and blended with nourishing sunflower oil. Expect a whitish tint to remain on the skin after application—but you’ll know it’s working!
Available at amazon.com, $14.94.
Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Sunscreen, SPF 50
Awarded the National Eczema Association Seal of Acceptance as a suitable sunscreen for persons with sensitive skin conditions, this winner provides 100% mineral sun protection that is made for baby's delicate skin. The gentle formula promises superior broad spectrum UVA and UVB sun protection by creating a screen between baby's skin and the sun’s rays. It’s also free of irritating chemicals, fragrance, parabens, phthalates, and dyes, so it’s suitable for use on even the most sensitive skin.
Available at target.com, $10.99.
BadgerKids Sunscreen Cream, Tangerine & Vanilla, SPF 30
The scrumptious scent of tangerine and vanilla might convince you that you’re frosting a cupcake instead of rubbing in powerful, planet-friendly sun protection. With a skin-soothing base of sunflower oil, beeswax, and vitamin E, it’s also reef safe and biodegradable. We also love that the tube is recyclable!
Available at amazon.com, $14.79.
All images courtesy retailers.
Feature photo James Carnes via Flickr