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Parenting

The 11 Best Baby Sunscreens of 2024

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As a parent, you’re used to constantly thinking about all the smart ways you can protect your child, so it’s no surprise you’re on the hunt for sunscreens that can shield your baby’s delicate and sensitive skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays. While the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that babies under 6 months old be kept out of the sun altogether, they do give the thumbs up to start using mineral sunscreen at the 6-month mark. 

Sunscreen is important for anyone, but babies especially since their skin is more sensitive and susceptible to sunburns, notes Lauren Crosby, MD, FAAP, and Bobbie Medical Advisor

She recommends opting for baby-safe sunscreens that are mineral-based, such as those with titanium dioxide and/or zinc oxide, since they’re less irritating and are not actually absorbed by the skin the way chemical sunscreens are. Instead, they serve as a topical blocker, sitting on top of the skin and shielding the sun’s harmful rays. She recommends avoiding any chemical sunscreens, but especially those containing oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate, homosalate or octocrylene.

Ready to shop baby-safe sunscreens? Here is our list of the best baby sunscreens of 2024.

11 Best Baby Sunscreens of 2024

1. Easiest to Apply Sunscreen: Babyganics Sunscreen Spray 50 SPF

10 Best Baby Sunscreens

This spray sunscreen is a huge win for parents because it goes on so easily. Since it’s not an aerosol spray, it’s far more concentrated and ensures that more sunscreen is going onto your baby’s skin rather than into thin air. It’s SPF 50+, contains both UVA and UVB protection, is water resistant and doesn’t require arm strength to rub it all in. It’s also nourishing and safe on sensitive skin thanks to the infusion of their NeoNourish Seed Oil Blend containing tomato, sunflower, cranberry, black cumin and raspberry seed oils. This also packs great in your carry-on bag, coming in at the exact allowed 6 ounces!

2. Best Baby Sunscreen Overall: Thinkbaby SPF 50+ Baby Sunscreen

10 Best Baby Sunscreens

There’s a reason parents rave about this baby-friendly mineral sunscreen—and have been using it since their kids were tiny and are still using it well into the double digits. It goes on smoother than most and doesn’t leave a greasy film that catches everything the wind blows in the direction of your kiddo. It’s high in SPF (50+) and is broad-spectrum, meaning it protects against both UVA and UVB rays. It’s also water resistant, so your baby can splash around all she wants and the sunscreen will stay put—for up to 80 minutes. 

3. Best Sunscreen for Kids of Color: BGS Kids SPF 50 Sunscreen

Best sunscreen kids of color

Sunscreen is important for all kids, regardless of skin color or type. BGS makes sure kids are safe and protected, with high end ingredients like chamomile, shea butter and jojoba oil. They’ve left out the parabens, fragrance and more, so you can feel good using BGS Kids Sunscreen on your littles; especially with water resistant SPF 50. Most important, it’s white residue free and rubs in clear.

4. Best Mineral Spray Sunscreen for Babies: Babo Botanicals Sheer Zinc Sunscreen

10 Best Baby Sunscreens

A spray sunscreen is hard to find in mineral form, but Babo Botanicals makes one worth using. It doesn’t go on too thick or leave an unsightly white cast, but it does offer ample protection for your baby from the sun’s harmful rays without making you feel like you ran a marathon after applying it. It’s made from a vegan-friendly formula using 100 percent non-nano zinc and is free from harmful chemicals. It even got a seal of approval from the Environmental Working Group (EWG). It’s also reef-safe, since it’s made without oxybenzone.

5. Best Stick Sunscreen for Babies: Blue Lizard BABY Mineral Sunscreen Stick

10 Best Baby Sunscreens

A stick sunscreen is great for getting in those nooks and crannies, like around the eyes, ears and on your baby’s neck. This one contains a high SPF (50+) and is free of oxybenzone or octinoxate, which not only protects your little babe, but also the tiny fish swimming in the deep blue sea. It’s both sweat and water resistant and goes on easily without leaving a sticky residue that catches everything your baby comes across.

6. Best SPF 40 Sunscreen for Babies: Badger – SPF 40 Baby Sunscreen Cream with Zinc Oxide

10 Best Baby Sunscreens

Badger products might be pricier than others, but most parents who’ve used their line of baby-friendly items can attest to the fact that they’re high-quality, made with safe ingredients and simply worth it. This mineral sunscreen is no exception. It contains an SPF of 40, is made from non-nano zinc oxide that doesn’t soak into your baby’s skin and is naturally sweat and water resistant. It’s also reef safe, which is a plus, especially for those with an eye on the environment. 

7. Best SPF 50 Sunscreen for Babies: Pipette Mineral Sunscreen SPF 50

10 Best Baby Sunscreens

You really can’t go wrong with a baby sunscreen that contains an SPF of 50 so long as it’s mineral-based, like this one from Pipette. It’s fast-absorbing and lightweight so you don’t have to worry about a thick white cast on your baby’s skin while they’re trying to play. It’s also gentle and non-irritating thanks to a natural blend of baby-friendly ingredients (think hypoallergenic, fragrance-free and non-toxic). This sunscreen is likely to be a big hit with any older kids you may have as well as adults. 

8. Best Non-Toxic Baby Sunscreen: Earth Mama Baby Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 40

10 Best Baby Sunscreens

If you’ve been shopping for your baby long enough, you’ve definitely come across this brand of mostly organic products all designed to work just as well as their non-organic counterparts without the added chemicals. True to their form, Earth Mama doesn’t disappoint with this mineral sunscreen with SPF 40. It’s both pediatrician- and dermatologist-tested, so you know it’s unlikely to cause irritation and is made using organic shea butter and calendula, which are naturally soothing on sensitive baby skin. It’s also reef-safe and never tested on animals.  

9. Best sunscreen for eczema: Aveeno Baby Continuous Protection Zinc Oxide Mineral Sunscreen

10 Best Baby Sunscreens

If your baby is eczema-prone, you’ll want to be extra careful when it comes to choosing any skin care products— sunscreen especially. That’s because eczema makes your baby’s skin ultra sensitive. Luckily, Aveeno’s got your back with their mineral sunscreen formulated specifically for babies with sensitive skin. It contains SPF 50 and goes on smoothly without causing itching, redness or irritation. It’s non-greasy, hypoallergenic, tear free and even scored a seal of approval from the National Eczema Association. 

10. Best Roll-On Baby Sunscreen: Baby Bum Mineral SPF 50 Sunscreen Roll-On Lotion

10 Best Baby Sunscreens

Rubbing sunscreen into a wiggly, rambunctious baby eager to play in the sand is no easy feat. This roll-on sunscreen makes the process a lot more seamless. It’s 100 percent mineral-based, goes on easily and is super gentle on your baby’s sensitive skin. It’s made from a plant-based formula containing natural ingredients including zinc oxide, coconut oil and shea and cocoa butters. To use, simply shake the bottle and roll it right onto your baby’s skin ideally 15 minutes before sun exposure, reapplying every 80-120 minutes, depending on activity level. 

11. Best Smooth, Cast-Free Application: MDSolarSciences Mineral KidCreme

10 Best Baby Sunscreens

Most mineral sunscreens are tough to rub in, which is simply the nature of the fact that they’re designed to sit atop your skin to protect it from the sun. Anyone who’s used this KidCreme by MD Solar Sciences is left totally impressed with how smooth and easy this goes on without leaving that dreaded white cast on your baby’s skin. It goes on super dry (the dry texture is so nice!), making it easy to put on. It’s also gentle on your baby’s skin, thanks to a botanical blend of skin-soothing ingredients like green tea and pomegranate extract.

Best Sunscreens for Mom

In addition to the list above, our moms have tried and loved these other SPF products for themselves.

Best Clear Sunscreen Gel: Murad Multi-Vitamin Clear Coat Sunscreen SPF 50

Best clear sunscreen

After using this sunscreen, I wondered why every single sunscreen isn’t clear!

Murad’s new Clear Coat Sunscreen goes on so light and smooth, without any stickiness or white casting. The texture is silky and feels like you’re putting on a luxurious moisturizer— that’s invisible. Add to that it’s an SPF 50, this has become the final step to my every morning routine.

Best on-the-go Sunscreen: e.l.f. SKIN Suntouchable All Set for Sun 45

Best sunscreen spray

The must-have SPF for moms on the go (all of us!), this multitasking clear SPF setting spray locks in your makeup while providing essential sun protection.

No white cast! Great for all skin tones! Clear is genius. And the spray makes it so easy, you can even get your little one a light coat of SPF when they’re strollering out the door. Infused with watermelon fruit extract and prickly pear seed oil, the quick dry mist let’s you easily refresh on sun protection throughout your day.

Best Brush-On Sunscreen: Larkly SPF 30 Mineral Powder Facial Sunscreen

Best brush on sunscreen

If you’re looking for a great on-the-go sunscreen option (maybe more for you mom than for your babes) a dry brush on SPF is brilliant. Just like a powder blush, you close your eyes and lightly brush all over your face/neck for sun protection. Check with your doctors before using this on your babes, but once your toddler is 6 mos or more, give them a full face brush before they head outside in the am. You’ll get sun coverage and MAJOR giggles each time, we promise.

(Bonus-when you’re running out, keep the brush and order a sunscreen refill.)

Which sunscreen is best for babies?

The best sunscreen for your baby is one that is mineral-based, meaning that they do not contain chemicals that could cause skin irritation and are considered potentially harmful to the environment, explains Dr. Crosby. Instead, they are made from safe ingredients that sit atop your baby’s skin and shield it from the sun’s powerful UV rays. “Mineral sunscreens such as those with  titanium dioxide and/or zinc oxide are best,” she says.

What sunscreen can a 7 month old use?

A 7-month-old baby can safely use a mineral-based sunscreen that is applied ideally 15-20 minutes prior to sun exposure and reapplied every 2 hours or 80 minutes if the infant is swimming or sweating. “Most infants and children have sensitive skin so it is best to choose a formula that is for babies or young children,” says Dr. Crosby.

Best sunscreen for babies under 6 months?

“Sunscreen can be used starting at 6 months old but there are occasions when it can be used at a younger age such as if no shade is available,” says Dr. Crosby. In this case, it’s still a good idea to go with a mineral-based sunscreen and ideally one that is 50 SPF minimum. “Test it on an area of skin a couple days prior if possible to watch for any reactions such as redness or skin irritation.”

Safe Sunscreen for kids

As you can see, there’s no shortage of baby-safe sunscreens on the market. It’s all about being choosy when it comes to which brand and variety you buy. Following Dr. Crosby’s advice of going with a mineral-based sunscreen that’s high in SPF (ideally 50, but no less than 30), is water-resistant and safe for sensitive skin, will help ensure that you and your baby have fun in the sun safely— free from burns or irritations.

The content on this site is for informational purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Discuss any health or feeding concerns with your infant's pediatrician. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay it based on the content on this page.
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The content on this site is for informational purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Discuss any health or feeding concerns with your infant’s pediatrician. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay it based on the content on this page.

Producer Jenny Altman

Jenny is the head of content at Milk Drunk and a writer for all of her favorite wellness and mom sites including Well+Good, Peanut, Motherly and Scary Mommy. Mom to Luisa, she can be found talking bras and beauty with the moms at school and on instagram.