All sunscreens are not created equal. There are many out there that contain ingredients that are toxic and dangerous to our kids. But, never fear, we’ve done the research for you.
First—and this may seem obvious—you should really be avoiding the need for sunscreen altogether with rash guards and sun hats on the little ones. But, let’s be realistic. Sunscreen is a fact of life, and we want to keep our kids safe. So, let’s make smart decisions and stay away from the worst products out there. To that end, our Editor-in-Chief has combined her personal hands-on experience with EWG’s 2017 sunscreen guide and put together our list of favorites.
Staying Power (For Those Active, Sweaty Days)
Badger Baby Sunscreen Cream, SPF 30
There are lots of reasons to love this sunscreen. It won’t break the bank, it’s easy to find in stores, and it really, truly stays on forever. I wear this sunscreen on my face and arms when I run outside in the summer and I have no complaints (and no sunburns). Badger is also a Certified B Corporation, which means they are dedicated to making positive social, environmental and economic changes that benefit people and the planet. We need to support companies like this now more than ever.
Babyganics Pure Mineral Sunscreen Stick, SPF 50+
As a general rule, I’m not a fan of the sunscreen stick because they’re usually so tough to apply—especially to a squirmy baby—but I’m making an exception in this case. It’s a good value, one stick lasts forever, and I’m confident that its not going to sweat off my kids’ faces immediately. They have a whole line of sunscreens, all well rated by EWG, but this is my favorite.
Worth the Extra Dough
Yes, it’s $32 for a 4.8 oz bottle, but this sunscreen is pretty freaking glorious. It stays on forever, goes on smoothly (not too runny; not too thick) and it makes the grade in terms of safety. Plus, you can rest assured that you’re buying from an ethical company that not only uses the safest ingredients, but also works nationwide to raise awareness and lobby for better regulation of unsafe toxic chemicals that have invaded the marketplace.
Good in a Pinch (or, You’ll Probably Find These at the Rite Aid)
Aveeno Baby Continuous Protection Sensitive Skin Lotion Sunscreen, SPF 50
EWG gives this a 1 rating, which is as good as it gets. Be careful when you’re perusing the shelves, though, because not all Aveeno sunscreens are created equal, either, and some of their products get as high as a 7 rating, which you definitely want to avoid.
Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Sunscreen, SPF 50
Ditto for this one from Neutrogena. While it may be mind boggling, this Pure & Free baby sunscreen gets a top rating from EWG, but their Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Sunscreen, SPF 60+ gets the worst rating at a 10. Be careful!
Mollie Michel is a South Philly resident and a Philadelphia public school parent. A recovering non-profit professional, Mollie is also an experienced birth doula, Certified Lactation Counselor, and the mom of two awesome girls and a sweet pit bull named Princess Cleopatra. In her spare time, she is usually trying to figure out how Pinterest works, training for a(nother) half-marathon with her dog at her side, or simply trying to keep up with her increasingly wily daughters.