The 10 Best Sunscreens for Babies in 2020

The 10 Best Sunscreens for Babies in 2020

The spring and summer months are always a welcome escape from the cold. You can get back outside, enjoy the beach, relax by the pool, and revel in the pleasure of a more extended day. The only downside to some good old summer fun can be, oddly enough, the sun.

The thing that makes summer feel so rejuvenating is the same thing that can damage your skin and cause burns. As parents, you already know this. While the summer may be tough on your skin, the harsh UV rays that the sun emits can wreak havoc on your baby’s skin as well.

A baby’s skin is 30% more sensitive than adult skin, which means that the sun can cause more damage than you expect. This is why choosing the best sunscreen for your baby this summer is essential. Don’t panic, because we have your back. Today, we’ll be showing you the 10 best baby sunscreens and how to find the perfect fit for your child.

Features to Consider in Good Baby Sunscreens

Sun Protection Factor Rating

The sun protection factor (SPF) rating is the first thing you need to look for. The rating is numerical and is an excellent indicator of how much sun will be blocked by the sunscreen. The numbers vary, but for babies, SPF ratings above 50 are generally safe. For adults, the safe numbers are much lower, but remember your child’s skin is more sensitive than yours. So, that SPF 30 that you have lying around might not give your baby enough protection.

Application

There are a lot of different ways that sunscreen can be applied to the body. There are spray bottle options, lotion options, and even stick-based options. Each option has its strengths, but for the most part, it comes down to your preference. One thing we will say is that babies tend to respond better to lotion sunscreen because it puts them at ease while you apply it.

Size

Sunscreen, as with any other skincare product, is going to come in different sizes. You’ll see plenty of sunscreen options that are between 3 and 6 ounces, and these are the average. If you’re not sure how much sunscreen you’ll need, always keep in mind that the average adult needs about one fluid ounce of sunscreen per application. Since your baby is smaller than you, about half an ounce is enough to use for a child.

UVB and UVA

There are two different types of ultraviolet rays that the sun emits. UVB rays are the most common for cases of sunburn and skin cancer, while UVA rays tend to penetrate deeper within the skin. When shopping for sunscreen, especially for your baby, you should always make sure that the sunscreen you choose protects against both UVB and UVA rays. We go into more detail about this in our full buyer’s guide at the bottom.

Top 10 Best Sunscreens for Babies 2020

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1. Best Overall Baby Sunscreen Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen

Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen

Why we like it: Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen is backed by awards, research, and customer appreciation. Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen is a brand that you can trust.

Editor’s Rating:

Price: $
SPF: 50
Application: Lotion
Size: 3oz
Protection: UVB and UVA

Formula
Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen is made with both quality and highly biodegradable materials. The ingredients are made up of 100% vegan and vegetarian plant life, which makes Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen an excellent choice for the environmentally conscious. Speaking of ecological preservation, the Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen formula is reef-friendly, which means that when it comes off of the body in the water, it won’t harm endangered reefs.

Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen is made with ingredients that make application a breeze. The sunscreen doesn’t feel oily when applied, and the chemicals used are FDA approved. Harmful chemicals like avobenzone, oxybenzone, paraben, phthalates are all left out of the formula. The formula is also rated to last for up to 80 minutes while in the water.

What sets it apart
Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen is backed by numerous awards in different categories. Not only does Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen hold a Whole Foods Premium care award, but the sunscreen is also rated number 1 by the EWG association. Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen has more awards than other popular brands like Babyganics and Neutrogena and over 20 years of dermatologist recognition. If you’re in the market for a well-researched and proven product, Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen is a great choice.

Things you should know
While Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen provides ample protection against the sun, the formula is not hypoallergenic or tear-free. When it comes to sunscreen, this typically isn’t a big deal, but for babies with sensitive eyes and skin, it can cause problems. When applying Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen, always be sure to keep it away from your child’s eyes and nose.

Pros

  • FDA approved; more safety awards than other top brands
  • Provides 80 minutes of protection in the water
  • Strong UVA and UVB protection

Cons

  • The formula is not tear-free or hypoallergenic
  • 3oz is a small amount of sunscreen
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2. The Best Value Baby Sunscreen Babyganics Sunscreen Lotion

Babyganics Sunscreen Lotion

Why we like it: Babyganics Sunscreen Lotion provides you with a high-quality oil-based sunscreen that smells great, goes on easy, and comes with plenty of water resistance potential.

Editor’s Rating:

Price: $$
SPF: 50+
Application: Lotion
Size: 6oz, 2 pack
Protection: UVA and UVB

Formula
Babyganics Sunscreen lotion is a well-rounded sunscreen product made with natural ingredients. Babyganics is a company that produces a lot of high-quality skincare products for babies, and their sunscreen line is no exception. The formula is made with Babyganic’s unique mixture of the NeoNourish Seed Oil blend. The blend contains tomato, sunflower, black cumin, raspberry seed oils, and cranberry. Not only does this blend make a kid-friendly and robust lotion, but the formula is vegan and vegetarian friendly. Overall, the ingredients blend nicely to create a safe oil-based sunscreen.

What sets it apart
Babyganics Sunscreen Lotion is set apart by the formula it’s made with. What makes the Babyganics formula unique is that it’s tear-free and hypoallergenic. Products like Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen may be similar in strength, but it lacks a tear-free and hypoallergenic formula. So, even if you’ll be applying sunscreen on your child’s face, it won’t cause any irritation. For infants and babies, Babyganics Sunscreen Lotion is an excellent choice because you can protect those hard to reach places without having to worry.

Things you should know
Babyganics Sunscreen Lotion protects in the water for around 80 minutes, but if the formula is not rubbed adequately into your baby’s skin, the results will vary. The lotion is also a bit oily, which can make it hard to tell whether or not it was fully absorbed into your baby’s skin. When using Babyganics Sunscreen Lotion, always be sure to double-check your baby’s skin before placing them in the water.

Pros

  • Hypoallergenic and tear-free formula
  • 100% vegan and vegetarian
  • Up to 80 minutes of protection in the water

Cons

  • Oily texture makes it tough to know whether or not the right amount of sunscreen was applied
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3. Best Baby Sunscreen for Adults too Australian Gold Sunscreen

Australian Gold Sunscreen

Why we like it: Australian Gold Sunscreen is a great sunscreen choice for both children and adults. The mineral-based formula works well for both parents and children with sensitive skin.

Editor’s Rating:

Price: $$
SPF: 50+
Application: Lotion
Size: 8oz
Protection: UVA and UVB

Formula
Australian Gold Sunscreen is made with premium ingredients that work well for babies, toddlers, and adults. The main active ingredient within the formula is native Australian acacia extract. Australian acacia extract is known for being great moisturizing sensitive skin. The extract serves as a base for additional ingredients like sunflower, tea tree, and olive fruit to protect and condition your child’s skin. Australian Gold Sunscreen is a mineral-based sunscreen that lacks sticky and greasy oils while maintaining robust protection from UVB and UVA rays.

What sets it apart
Australian Gold Sunscreen is one of the few sunscreens that comes with its scent. The scent is called the Australian Gold signature fragrance, and it is reminiscent of the smell that aloe vera leaves give off. Australian Gold Sunscreen is also great for your skin in general because it contains ingredients that naturally moisturize and condition skin.

For adults, this makes Australia Gold Sunscreen an excellent choice for them too. If you’re looking for a sunscreen that you and your child can find value in, Australian Gold Sunscreen is a great option.

Things you should know
Australian Gold Sunscreen may be mineral-based, but for some people, the formula may feel rough on the skin. The texture issue is more of a preference problem than a product issue, so be sure to see how your child reacts when using Australian Gold Sunscreen. For adults, the same texture problem is also there.

To avoid this issue, apply no more than 1 ounce of sunscreen. Mineral-based sunscreen blends are always a bit harsher than oil sunscreen blends, so just keep this in the back of your mind when looking at either the Australian Gold Sunscreen and products like the Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen.

Pros

  • Up to 80 minutes of protection in the water
  • Comes with a signature Australian Gold fragrance
  • Mineral formula leaves out sticky oils and rubs into the skin easier

Cons

  • Mineral-based texture can cause discomfort if too much product is applied
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4. Best Baby Sunscreen for Sensitive Skin Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen

Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen

Why we like it: Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen works perfectly for children with sensitive skin.

Editor’s Rating:

Price: $$
SPF: 30+
Application: Lotion
Size: 5oz
Protection: UVB and UVA

Formula
Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen is a mild sunscreen made with ingredients derived from Australian minerals. The mineral formula provides Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen with a non-oil base that both you and your child will love.

The mineral base is made with a mix of zinc oxide and titanium oxide and contains no harmful chemicals like parabens or fragrances. Although zinc oxide is a common chemical in a lot of sunscreen brands, the added titanium dioxide in this makes Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen stronger than other brands that use zinc oxide solely.

What sets it apart
Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen is designed for children and adults with sensitive skin. Products like Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen rely on oils to get the job done, but Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen’s natural blend of minerals feels much better on sensitive skin.

The mineral blend of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide is both efficient and unique. Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen also uses smart bottle technology to make sure you get the right amount of sunscreen with each squirt.

Things you should know
While Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen excels at protecting adults and children with sensitive skin, for babies, the SPF 30 rating is low, so if you’re going out in a severe sun, you might need something stronger. Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen can also feel rough on very young infants, which means that parents with children over that six-month-old mark will find more value in it.

Pros

  • Zinc oxide and titanium dioxide blend is unique, safe, and great for sensitive skin
  • Dermatologist tested and rated brand
  • Smart bottle technology helps you get the perfect amount of sunscreen each time

Cons

  • Low SPF rating is not ideal for infants

Neutrogena Water Resistant Sunscreen

Why we like it: Neutrogena Water Resistant Sunscreen is easy to apply to infants thanks to the deodorant stick-like design. Neutrogena products are all tested, researched, and backed by dermatologists.

Editor’s Rating:

Price: $
SPF: 70+
Application: Stick
Size: 47oz
Protection: UVB and UVA

Formula
Neutrogena Water Resistant Sunscreen provides a different approach to sunscreen application. The ingredients are formulated into a deodorant stick design, making the sunscreen simple to apply to people of all ages.

The components themselves are based on helioplex technology that combines vitamins and minerals in a solid stick that’s resistant to water. The formula used in Neutrogena Water Resistant Sunscreen is paraben-free, PABA free, hypoallergenic, and oil-free. The deodorant stick design may be off-putting at first glance, but the sunscreen does its job well.

What sets it apart
Neutrogena Water Resistant Sunscreen is set apart by the simple fact that it’s more water-resistant than the competition. While other products like Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen and Sun Bum Baby Bum Sunscreen are moisture resistant for the same amount of time (80 minutes), Neutrogena Water Resistant Sunscreen can be applied right on wet skin.

The stick application design allows the Neutrogena Water Resistant Sunscreen to shine where other brands fall a bit short. Applying sunscreen on damp skin with a stick is much easier after your child has been out for a while.

Things you should know
While the Neutrogena Water Resistant Sunscreen sees a lot of benefits from its application method, the downside is that you get a minimal amount. Also, some children may not enjoy the way it feels when it’s applied due to the friction created while applying this sunscreen.

To get the best results when using Neutrogena Water Resistant Sunscreen, it’s best to apply sunscreen on wet skin instead of dry skin. Neutrogena Water Resistant Sunscreen is also held back in some ways by its deodorant stick design, because just like a stick of deodorant if left in warm temperatures, the sunscreen can clump up or crack.

Pros

  • Can be applied to wet skin
  • 80 minutes of water resistance
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Solid SPF rating of 70+
  • Low cost

Cons

  • Limited amount of sunscreen
  • Uncomfortable application on dry skin
  • The sunscreen can become cracked if left in unfavorable conditions
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6. Best Baby Sunscreen with Bug Repellent Babyganics Baby Sunscreen and Bug Spray

Babyganics Baby Sunscreen and Bug Spray

Why we like it: Babyganics Baby Sunscreen and Bug Spray offers two forms of protection for your child. Babyganics makes it easy to keep the sun and bugs away in one simple spray-on sunscreen.

Editor’s Rating:

Price: $$
SPF: 50
Application: Spray
Size: 2 pack, 6oz each
Protection: UVA and UVB

Formula
Babyganics Baby Sunscreen and Bug Spray is created with a 2-in-1 formula that protects from bugs and the sun. The sunscreen solution is made with zinc oxide, octocrylene and octisalate. Babyganics leaves out harmful chemicals like parabens and phthalates.

The formula is then combined with natural essential oils that work as a natural insect repellent. These oils vary but include lemongrass, rosemary, peppermint, and geranium, which all act as natural repellents for most common insects within the United States. All of Babyganic’s ingredients are hypoallergenic, gluten-free, and not tested on animals.

What sets it apart
What sets Babyganics Baby Sunscreen and Bug Spray apart is obvious; it’s both a strong sunscreen and insect repellent. While other brands like Neutrogena and Australian Gold may offer strong protection against the sun, Babyganics Baby Sunscreen and Bug Spray provides that same level of security with the bonus of keeping bugs away. Not only is this great for children, but it works well for adults that want to keep the sun and bugs out too.

Things you should know
Babyganics Baby Sunscreen and Bug Spray is all-natural, but that’s not always a good thing. The bug spray component of the sunscreen is hit or miss depending on the bug, and the natural oils can give off a potent odor at times. While peppermint may smell pleasant for some, it’s not everyone’s first fragrance choice. The natural oils can also be overwhelming at times for people or children with acute senses of smell.

Pros

  • Reef safe formula with all-natural ingredients
  • Acts as both a bug spray and sunscreen product
  • Two 6oz bottles for the price of one

Cons

  • Natural oils can produce an overwhelming scent that some kids and parents may dislike

Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Mineral Sunscreen Stick

Why we like it: Neutrogena is known for testing, and they're one of the few companies that make adjustments based on customer feedback. The Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Mineral Sunscreen Stick offers an easy to use deodorant stick design based on non-stick minerals.

Editor’s Rating:

Price: $
SPF: 60+
Application: Stick
Size: 47oz
Protection: UVB and UVA

Formula
The Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Mineral Sunscreen Stick focuses on the delicacy of your child’s skin. The ingredients used are free from paraben, sulfate, PABA, and oils that can potentially harm an infant’s skin. The formula is based on Neutrogena’s purescreen technology, which combines minerals that reflect harmful UVB and UVA sun rays.

The Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Mineral Sunscreen Stick is delicate enough to be used on your child’s face, ears, neck, and groin area. The small stick-based application method makes it simple to reach those ordinarily tough to reach places on your child’s face.

What sets it apart
The Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Mineral Sunscreen Stick is unique in that it’s specifically designed for children with sensitive skin or skin conditions like eczema. To back up this claim, the Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Mineral Sunscreen Stick was given a stamp of approval from the National Eczema Association.

Aside from being highly regarded by the National Eczema Association, as with other Neutrogena products, the Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Mineral Sunscreen Stick is backed by decades of research from dermatologists. Overall, the Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Mineral Sunscreen Stick is a sunscreen you can trust from a brand you can trust.

Things you should know
While the Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Mineral Sunscreen Stick may work well for children with sensitive skin, that doesn’t mean that it works well for everyone. One of the downsides of using a mineral formula, compared to an oil formula, is that it can feel sticky at times if not rubbed in properly. The Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Mineral Sunscreen Stick also comes with a minimal amount of sunscreen. So, while it may come at a great price, you’re not getting that much sunscreen.

Pros

  • Backed by the National Eczema Association and dermatologists
  • Water-resistant for up to 80 minutes
  • Stick-based design is easy to apply to the face, above the eyes, and ears

Cons

  • Limited amount of sunscreen
  • The blend of minerals can be sticky if not correctly applied
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8. The Best Portable Option Sun Bum Baby Bum Sunscreen

Sun Bum Baby Bum Sunscreen

Why we like it: Sun Bum Baby Bum Sunscreen feels light and comes with a smooth texture. While it may be a spray-based sunscreen, it feels as strong as lotion sunscreens.

Editor’s Rating:

Price: $$
SPF: 50+
Application: Spray
Size: 3oz
Protection: UVB and UVA

Formula
Sun Bum Baby Bum Sunscreen is made with a premium blend of minerals, including coconut oil, zinc oxide, cocoa butter, and shea butter. The zinc oxide base provides strong UVB and UVA protection, while the other ingredients are layered in to moisturize and nourish your child’s skin.

Sun Bum Baby Bum Sunscreen is not tested on animals, and every ingredient used is vegan and vegetarian friendly. Sun Bum Baby Bum Sunscreen also doesn’t use harmful chemicals like silicone, paraben, sulfate, and phthalate. Compared to products like Babyganics Sunscreen Lotion and Australian Gold Sunscreen, Sun Bum Baby Bum Sunscreen feels smoother and has a better texture.

What sets it apart
Sun Bum Baby Bum Sunscreen is excellent for portability. While most sunscreen products are portable, Sun Bum Baby Bum Sunscreen is lightweight and easy to apply. All it takes is a few quick sprays to keep your child safe in the sun. The bottle is small, compact, and can easily fit in most types of carrying bags.

When you need sunscreen on the go and want to get it on your child without a fuss, Sun Bum Baby Bum Sunscreen is the right choice. All sunscreen is portable, but the speed in which Sun Bum Baby Bum Sunscreen can be applied and absorbed is what sets it apart from competitors.

Things you should know
While Sun Bum Baby Bum Sunscreen is portable and easy to apply, it does have some drawbacks due to the nature of it being a spray-on sunscreen. Spray-on sunscreens are notorious for not holding up well when submerged in water, and in some cases, it can be challenging for your child’s skin to absorb the sunscreen. So, while spray-on sunscreen may seem easy to apply, you’ll still need to rub it in the same way you would with other sunscreen products.

Pros

  • Spray-on design is easy to apply to infant
  • Highly portable design
  • Gluten-free and hypoallergenic
  • Smooth texture that's quickly absorbed by the skin

Cons

  • Limited amount of sunscreen
  • Not as effective when used in the water; lacks strong water resistance

La Roche-Posay Anthelios Dermo-Kids Gentle Sunscreen

Why we like it: La Roche-Posay Anthelios Dermo-Kids Gentle Sunscreen is made with vitamin E as an active ingredient. Vitamin E is known for being a natural moisturizer.

Editor’s Rating:

Price: $$$
SPF: 60
Application: Lotion
Size: 6.7oz
Protection: UVB and UVA

Formula
La Roche-Posay Anthelios Dermo-Kids Gentle Sunscreen is made with high-quality ingredients that prioritize your child’s health and skin. The lotion is made with powerful UVA/UVB filters, and a soothing dosage of Vitamin E. La Roche-Posay Anthelios Dermo-Kids Gentle Sunscreen also has a unique bit of skincare technology called Cell-Ox Shield Technology that helps prevent against deep skin UV penetration.

What sets it apart
La Roche-Posay Anthelios Dermo-Kids Gentle Sunscreen has a very high SPF rating of 60+. With a 60+ rating, La Roche-Posay Anthelios Dermo-Kids Gentle Sunscreen is safe for the pool, the beach, or a day at the park. There are a lot of great products like Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen and Babyganics Sunscreen Lotion, but these other brands don’t offer the same level of protection that you get with La Roche-Posay Anthelios Dermo-Kids Gentle Sunscreen.

Things you should know
La Roche-Posay Anthelios Dermo-Kids Gentle Sunscreen is designed for both babies and toddlers, but the recommended age is 3+. So, while it may work well for babies, you’ll find that La Roche-Posay Anthelios Dermo-Kids Gentle Sunscreen works best for toddlers. The reason for this is that the formula is not great for sensitive infant skin, and babies don’t need vitamin E as much as older children.

Pros

  • High SPF rating means your child can spend more time in the sun
  • The Vitamin E infusion is excellent for your child's skin
  • Cell-Ox shield technology protects your child's skin from deep UV penetration
  • Comes with plenty of sunscreen capacity

Cons

  • Best suited for toddlers that are 3+
  • Quite expensive

Adorable Baby By Loving Naturals

Why we like it: Adorable Baby By Loving Naturals has high safety ratings from the EWG. The Adorable Baby By Loving Naturals formula is smooth and not sticky.

Editor’s Rating:

Price: $$$
SPF: 30
Application: Lotion
Size: 4.3oz
Protection: UVB and UVA

Formula
Adorable Baby By Loving Naturals is organic and biodegradable. The formula is vegan, and the company stresses that its formula is not tested on animals. These factors contribute to Adorable Baby By Loving Naturals receiving a low hazard score by the EWG. The recipe is made with a non-nano zinc oxide base layered with grape seed oil, beeswax extract, and cocoa butter. These ingredients stack together nicely and provide a smooth lotion that’s easy to apply. The beeswax extract also provides a pleasant yet subtle aroma.

What sets it apart
Adorable Baby By Loving Naturals is entirely based in the United States, meaning that it’s a high-quality homegrown brand. As for the formula, the non-nano zinc oxide and organic formula is unique in that it offers a gentle blend of zinc opposed to some of the harsher mineral brands like Australian Gold. Adorable Baby By Loving Naturals is also an excellent sunscreen for adults, making it a well-rounded product.

Things you should know
Adorable Baby By Loving Naturals is rated at 30+ SPF, which is not the highest, but it will work for your child. The ingredients are also rated to last up to 60 minutes in the water. Compared to brands like Babyganics and Thinkbaby, it’s weak. Keep in mind that a low SPF doesn’t make it a bad choice, but for babies with paler skin, Adorable Baby By Loving Naturals might not be the best choice.

Pros

  • Strong EWG hazard ratings
  • Natural fresh fragrance
  • Easy to apply and rubs into the skin quickly

Cons

  • High price tag for a low amount of sunscreen
  • 30 SPF is not the best rating for babies

Choosing the Right Sunscreen for Your Child

Now that you’ve seen the products, it’s time to go over the actual buying process. We’ve talked about mineral formulas, oil formulas, UVB and UVA protection, and specific SPF ratings. We know this can all be a bit overwhelming, or even confusing, so let’s take a look at what this all means for you and your child.

Broad-Spectrum Protection

We’ve spoken a lot about UVA and UVB protection, but what does that mean? When looking at sunscreen, labels will typically read “broad-spectrum protection.” All this means is that the sunscreen is protecting against both types of dangerous UV rays that the sun emits. For example, UVB rays cause damage beneath the skin, while UVA rays cause common ailments like skin cancer and sunburn.

For your child, you’ll always want to use sunscreen that offers broad-spectrum protection. Infants may be resilient, but their young skin comes with an increased risk of developing cancer and burns. Luckily, products like Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen and Babyganics Sunscreen Lotion come with high SPF ratings and broad-spectrum protection that will keep your child safe. If you would like some more information about SPF ratings, and how they work, you can always check this chart.

Mineral Sunscreen Versus Oil Sunscreen

There are two main types of sunscreens that you’ll come across, and both mineral sunscreens and oil sunscreens have their benefits. Mineral sunscreens are derived from vitamins and minerals, and instead of being absorbed by the skin, they act as a barrier between the sun and your skin.

Mineral sunscreens are an excellent choice for children because babies under one year old may reach poorly to certain formulas being absorbed into their skin. So, if you want to go the mineral route, be sure to check products like Australian Gold Sunscreen or Blue Lizard Sensitive Sunscreen.

Oil sunscreens work in a similar way to mineral sunscreens, but the skin absorbs the formula to act as a barrier. Oil sunscreens typically provide better water resistance, but for young children (under six months), it’s best to shy away from this formula. If you’re shopping for a toddler, a great choice is La Roche-Posay Sunscreen.

Spray-On Versus Lotions Versus Sticks

There are three common application methods, and we’ve touched on each system briefly, but it’s essential to understand how each type works and how they can benefit your child.

Spray-On

spray on sunscreen

Spray-on sunscreen is excellent for portability, and it’s hard to use more sunscreen than you need. Spray-on sunscreen offers the same level of protection as lotion sunscreen, but there is one downside you should be aware of. Spray-on sunscreen has a more challenging time being absorbed by your child’s skin, and spray-on sunscreen is not the best for water resilience. While this may be the case, spray-on sunscreen shines when using it for quick walks or quick beach trips. Spray-on sunscreen can also offer more than one benefit, like how Babyganics Baby Sunscreen and Bug Spray provides additional protection from insects.

Stick

Stick sunscreen functions the same way that a stick of deodorant does. On the bottle, there will be a small lever at the bottom to raise the rod accordingly. Stick sunscreen is excellent for young children because it can be applied to hard to reach areas with ease. The only downside to the stick design is that it comes with a meager amount of sunscreen. Also, if left in unfavorable conditions, the stick can become obsolete well before you run out of sunscreen. If you like the idea of a stick-based sunscreen, the Neutrogena Water Resistant Sunscreen is a great choice.

Lotion

using lotion sunscreen

Lotion sunscreens are the most common types of sunscreen that you’ll find. Lotions can offer additional benefits like moisturizing, and you usually get a decent amount of sunscreen in the bottle. Lotion sunscreens can also make use of either oil or mineral formulas, and their smooth textures are easy to apply on a baby’s skin. When shopping for lotion sunscreen look for tear-free solutions to reduce irritation around your child’s eyes. A great tear-free lotion sunscreen is Babyganics Sunscreen Lotion.

Water Resistance

A lot of sunscreen brands go into detail about how their product can handle exposure to water. The main thing you need to know is that no sunscreen is waterproof. Sunscreen can be water-resistant to an extent, but even the best products like Neutrogena Water Resistant Sunscreen only last up to 80 minutes. So, after about 1 hour in the water, you should always consider applying more sunscreen to account for this.

Water-resistance is essential for a few reasons, but the main reason is that being in the water can create more intense sunburn and irritation. While the water may feel like a welcome escape from the hot sun, water’s reflective properties can cause more sun damage than being out of the water. So, if you’ll be spending time with your child in the water, be sure to choose a product like Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen to get the broad-spectrum protection and high SPF rating you need.

Quick Tips for Applying Sunscreen on a Baby

Knowing which sunscreen you need is one thing, but getting it on your child without a fuss is another challenge. Luckily, there are a few quick tips that you can follow to make the experience much more manageable. You can watch these tips in action here.

Being Gentle Is Key

On yourself, you may be inclined to press into your skin while rubbing sunscreen in. While this may speed up the process, too much pressure is going to irritate your child. So, it may take longer, but always be gentle when rubbing sunscreen into your child’s skin. If you’re not sure how much pressure is too much, always look at your baby’s face and body language. They’ll let you know.

Give Them Options

Sunscreens come with different textures, fragrances, and application methods. If you notice that your child does not like a particular sunscreen, perhaps try another. For example, instead of forcing Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen on your child, try giving a Babyganics product a shot instead, or even Australian Gold Sunscreen. Sunscreen is generally inexpensive and doesn’t come in large amounts, so it might be best for you to pick up a few different options instead of sticking with just one.

Be Careful Around the Eyes and Ears

The eyes and ears of your child are sacred, and when applying sunscreen, these are the most challenging areas to reach. If you’re having trouble with spray-on products or even lotion products, we recommend giving a product like Neutrogena Water Resistant Sunscreen a try. The stick design makes it easy to reach these areas. If you are using lotion, just remember to be gentle. We recommend keeping spray-on sunscreen away from your child’s face if they’re under one year old.

FAQ

Can Babies Use Regular Sunscreen?

Regular sunscreen may work well for adults, but more often than not, the SPF rating is at or below 30. While 30 SPF is not a bad rating, for the delicate skin of a baby, you’ll want to seek out sunscreen with the highest amount of protection. Adult sunscreen can also contain harmful chemicals for babies that include parabens and sulfates.

What SPF Rating Is Safe for Babies?

For babies, you’ll want to go with an SPF rating at or above 50. Your baby won’t be able to get a perfect tan with this rating, but you won’t need to worry about being out in the sun for a long time. If possible, always consider getting the most protection you can for your child’s sensitive skin.

What Is the Best Type of Sunscreen for Babies?

There are three common ways that sunscreen can be applied, and while they all work, lotion sunscreens tend to have the best results for both babies and adults. The basis for this claim is that lotion sunscreens can be rubbed into and absorbed by the skin better. Also, babies tend to enjoy the rubbing sensation as opposed to being sprayed or irritated by a stick. Your baby may differ, though, and that’s why we’ve included a range of options.

When Is It Safe to Use Sunscreen on a Baby?

As a parent, you may be inclined to protect your child as much as possible. Protecting your child should always be a priority, but using sunscreen on a child before they’re six months old can lead to complications with their developing skin. So, we always recommend waiting until your child is at least six months old before using sunscreen.

When Should I Apply Sunscreen on a Baby?

Sunscreen does not work immediately after it’s applied, which means that you’ll want to give the formula time to be absorbed by your child’s skin. For this reason, always be sure to apply sunscreen 20 minutes before your child is exposed to the sun.

Final Thoughts

Choosing the best sunscreens for your baby does not need to be challenging, but we know that there are a lot of different options to consider. As long as you know your baby’s skin, and how often you’ll be out enjoying the sun, you should be able to find the perfect sunscreen with ease. Keep in mind that each sunscreen may work well for different situations.

To make the right choice, take some time to think about what you’ll be needing sunscreen for. If you are hanging around at the beach or by the pool, you should always favor sunscreen brands that are portable and water-resistant with high SPF ratings. On the other hand, if you’ll be taking your child for a stroll on a beautiful day, you can be safe with more traditional sunscreens with lower SPF ratings. Get out there and enjoy the sun with your little one with these baby sunscreens.