With so many options on the market, finding the safest sunscreen for babies can feel overwhelming. We want you to feel confident in your choice of a sunscreen to cover your baby’s skin, so here are Truly Mama’s pick for the safest sunscreens for babies.
This pick ranks as one of the best natural sunscreens for babies, so it’s Truly Mama’s #1 pick. It may seem a little bit pricey (which was my only complaint), but Blue Lizard is the number one dermatologist-approved mineral sunscreen recommended by pediatricians. What makes this sunscreen so great for babies? It uses natural ingredients zinc oxide and titanium dioxide to offer broad-spectrum protection, is fragrance free, and is water resistant for up to 40 minutes.
The cream does come out thick, but it has a light consistency which is easy to spread on a wriggly baby. Knowing that anyone can get carried away with fun times, Blue Lizard’s packaging is made with their proprietary Smart Bottle technology which changes colors as a reminder to reapply lotion when evil UV rays are present. This comes in extremely handy during overcast weather, when you might be getting more sun than you think—or when you’re simply busy chasing your little one around on the beach.
A fan favorite and runner-up to Blue Lizard Australian Sunscreen, Thinkbaby is known to have a great water-resistant cream which blocks out 98% of ultraviolet rays to prevent burns, redness and reduce the risk of skin cancer.
This lotion is water-resistant for up to 80 minutes, and is easily the only baby sunscreen that triggers some nostalgia, as the light tropical-citrus smell is reminiscent of a popsicle on the beach. The cream does not feel greasy, nor does it dry out skin after application. An important note to add is that this sunscreen is essentially edible. Breastfeeding moms can apply this sunscreen without any worry of harm to their baby.
This premium natural sunscreen for babies has its approval from the Skin Cancer Foundation and is geared towards babies with sensitive skin, with no irritating ingredients. Their lotion is made with zinc oxide, coconut oil, and shea and cocoa butters to keep that silky-smooth texture of our babies’ perfect skin.
When you use this sunscreen, there is a possibility you’ll notice a white chalk-like film left on the skin after application since the cream is so thick. But, at least you’ll know it’s working! Sun Bum is reef-safe and water resistant for up to 80 minutes, so there is absolutely no reason to worry when swimming or sweating under the harmful UV rays.
Accepted by the National Eczema Association, this baby sunscreen is the best sunscreen for babies with eczema. It’s a broad-spectrum mineral-based lotion free of parabens, sulfates, and fragrance.
Positive reviews have flooded in all over socials and Amazon, with notes of its oily texture, but more to the effectiveness of this cream on babies who have eczema. All CeraVe products include ceramides to hydrate the skin’s natural protective barrier (a key component to managing eczema), and the baby sunscreen includes skin-calming aloe to replenish the soft touch of your tiny one. Use as instructed for best results: apply the first round 15 minutes before any sun exposure and reapply every 2 hours. This cream is water resistant for up to 80 minutes.
This mineral-based sunscreen uses organic ingredients and is free of preservatives and parabens, which can irritate sensitive skin. Ingredients such as includes tamanu oil, avocado butter, and chamomile help the chemical free formula roll on unbelievably gently, especially on delicate skin.
The sunflower and sesame seed oils help with augmenting the SPF protection. This brand is a little pricier than most of the alternatives we tested, but the money just may be worth it to help support its high-quality standards, including cruelty-free testing.
Frequently Asked Questions
What makes sunscreen “safe” for babies?
The main thing that most health-conscious parents want to look for in safe sunscreens for babies is how the sunscreen is protecting their babies. There are two ways sunscreen works: 1) chemical-based protection, which absorbs into the skin and then absorbs UV rays and 2) mineral-based sunscreen, which work as a barrier on top of the skin to deflect UV rays. (Typically, zinc oxide is the main ingredient of mineral-based sunscreen.) Because of the differences in how they work, many parents choose mineral-based sunscreen for their babies to avoid having chemicals absorbed into their babies’ skin.
What’s the best sunscreen for babies under 6 months?
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that whenever possible, infants should stay out of direct sunlight. They recommend that babies under 6 months old do not use sunscreen, and instead, stay in the shade. Truly Mama’s recommendation is to dress your babies in lightweight protective clothing and wide brim hats and if direct sunlight cannot be avoided, speak to your pediatrician about the best natural sunscreen for babies under 6 months old.
What number SPF does my baby need?
When your baby is older than 6 months old, a good principle to choosing the right sun protection factor is to always start with a broad-spectrum sunscreen of at least 30, but 50 is always the gold star standard.
How often should I reapply my baby’s sunscreen?
If you are spending the day outside—no matter if you are at the beach in a bathing suit or at the park fully dressed—protecting your bundle of joy with sunscreen is a necessity. Directions may differ from each bottle or brand, and some may be more water resistant than others, but it is a good rule of thumb to first apply a layer approximately 15 minutes before stepping outdoors. Once the base layer is established, re-apply sunscreen at least every two hours.