Sunscreen is a lotion, cream, or spray that one rubs on the skin to prevent wrinkles, sagging, age spots, and skin cancer caused by harmful sun rays.
Babies need sunscreen because it is impossible to avoid total exposure to direct sunlight.
As a parent, you need to understand what components make sunscreen suitable for a baby. For example, you should be keen to check the active agent of the sunscreen to ensure that it is not harmful to your child, its water and sweat resistance, its SPF, and its broad-spectrum ability. Also, you consider the skin type of your child and smell preferences to pick a baby sunscreen that is most favorable to your baby.
We discuss the reasons your baby needs sunscreen and outline the best baby sunscreens in 2022 to help you make an informed decision when purchasing sunscreen for your little one.
Best Baby Sunscreens Reviews 2023
Thinkbaby is our number one choice of the best baby sunscreen in 2022 because;
- Thinkbaby is made of zinc oxide, which is a natural component that minimizes its permeability into the body.
- It has SPF 50+, which ensures your baby’s protection from harmful sun rays.
- It is water-resistant for upto 80 minutes, which ensures lengthy protection from direct sunlight. Ultimately, Thinkbaby sunscreen is cost-effective.
- It is a cream, which allows you to rub it inadequately on your baby’s skin and enables you to apply on necessary body areas only
- It is a broad-spectrum coverage sunscreen, which protects your baby from both the UVB rays that cause sunburns and UVA rays that may cause premature aging of the skin and melanoma.
- It is melon scented, which allows it easy to convince a baby to use it.
Even more convincing, Thinkbaby sunscreen has been rated on EWG’s safest sunscreens since 2010, with a health score of one (10 being the most harmful).
What we do not love about Thinkbaby sunscreen; it has a slow absorption because of its oily feel. As such, keep off Thinkbaby if your baby is impatient.
Aveeno Baby Continuous Protection Zinc Oxide Mineral Sunscreen.
Aveeno Baby Continuous Protection Zinc Oxide Mineral Sunscreen is our second best baby sunscreen in 2022 because:
- It uses zinc oxide as the active ingredient
- It provides water resistance for up to 80 minutes
- It is a broad spectrum coverage sunscreen, which is suitable for babies as it protects kids from UVA and UVB rays
- It has a tear formula that is non-greasy, hypoallergenic and paraben-free, phthalate-free, and fragrance-free, which makes it suitable for sensitive skin.
- It has an SPF 50+, which promotes enhances sunscreen protection
Note: the Aveeno Baby Continuous Protection Zinc Oxide Sunscreen Lotion, Broad Spectrum SPF 50, 3 Fl Oz received an award from the National Eczema Association Seals of Acceptance.
Also, the Skin Cancer Foundation recommends baby sunscreen as an effective broad-spectrum sunscreen.
- The baby sunscreen is thick and takes longer to apply
- It is difficult to take off
Earth Mama Kids Uber-Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 40
Earth Mama Kids Uber-Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 40 is our third best baby sunscreen in 2022.
We love this sunscreen because;
- It is a broad-spectrum sunscreen, meaning it offers your baby both UVA and UVB protection
- It has SPF 40, which is above the recommended SPF 30
- It is pediatrician tested, and dermatologist tested
- NSF/ANSI 305 Certified by Oregon Tilth
- It is travel friendly as it comes in a tube.
- It is suitable for sensitive baby skins because it is fragrance-free, has organic colloidal oatmeal, and shea butter for ultimate moisturization
Note; this baby sunscreen is excellent for babies with eczema
- This sunscreen has only 40 minutes of water resistance
- It takes a while to apply as it a cream-cheese consistency
- it does not come off from your baby’s skin entirely even after scrubbing it off
Badger Active Kids Sunscreen Cream
Badger Active Kids Sunscreen Cream is our top 4 best baby sunscreen in 2022.
Here is what we love about the creamy sunscreen;
- It has an EWG rating one, meaning it is one of the safest sunscreens in the market
- It is chemical-free and made with 98% organic ingredients
- It is suitable for sensitive skin because it has a blend of sunflower oil, beeswax, vitamin E, which enhances moisturizing
- It is a broad spectrum baby sunscreen, which protects your baby from both UVA and UVB rays
- It uses zinc oxide as the sun rays blocker
- It is an SPF 30, which is just the right SPF for babies over six months
What we are wary about this baby sunscreen;
- It has a tangerine and vanilla scent that smells like creamsicles, which is unsuitable for scent-sensitive babies or parents.
- It has a water and sweat resistance of 40 minutes only, meaning you have to reapply after every 40 minutes. That is three times every two hours!
Adorable Baby by Loving Naturals All Natural Sunscreen
Adorable Baby by Loving Naturals All Natural Sunscreen is our fifth best baby sunscreen in 2022.
We love this sunscreen because;
- It is 100% natural
- It is a broad-spectrum, which protects from both UVA and UVB rays
- It offers an SPF 30+ coverage, which is sufficient for maximum protection against harmful sun rays
- Its ingredients include shea butter, cocoa butter, and grapes that facilitates moisturization, making it suitable for babies with dry skin
- It can be used by both babies and adults, which makes it suitable for all family members.
- It provides water and sweat resistance for 4o minutes only
Sunscreen for Babies Buying Guide
Do babies need sunscreen?
Babies need sunscreen. The baby’s skin is thin and delicate and thus, susceptible to ultraviolet (UV) radiation that causes sunburn, skin damage, eye damage, and skin cancer.
Aso, babies with eczema need to use sunscreen to restore skin moisture when exposed to direct sunlight to prevent eczema flare-up.
Benefits of using sunscreen on your baby include;
- It protects your baby from sunburns that can cause skin peeling, swelling, redness, and itching
- It blocks UV rays that can cause skin cancer.
- It controls eczema by preventing excessive skin drying
- It improves the health of your baby’s skin by protecting its collagen, elasticity, and keratin.
- It improves some baby skin infections such as small pimples after exposure to direct sunlight.
However, sunscreens are recommended for babies older than six months. The skin of babies under six months are more likely to absorb chemicals in the sunscreens much higher than that of older kids owing to their greater surface-area to body-weight ratio.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends;
- Keeping your less than six-month-old baby away from direct sunlight as the best protection, especially between 10 a.m and 4 p.m, when the UV rays are strongest.
- Shade your baby when in sunlight. For example, you can use a stroller canopy, a tree, an umbrella, or a wide-brimmed hat.
- Dress your baby clothes with sun protection such as Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) or UVA/UVB protection.
Total avoidance of sunlight for your infant, however, is unlikely. As such, the AAP states that parents can use a little sunscreen on their infant. The sunscreen applied to infants should be at least 15 SPF and applied to sun-exposed areas only.
Note: you should use sunscreen on your baby if labeled safe for babies under six months.
The bottom line is, all babies need sunscreen. But what type of sunscreen is best for your baby, whether an infant, a toddler, or an older kid? We explore factors that you should check when purchasing sunscreen to determine which kind is best for your precious baby.
What type of sunscreen is best?
The best kind of sunscreen for babies have the following features:
- Broad-Spectrum Coverage, which protects your kid from both UVB and UVA rays.
- Natural Ingredients. Sunscreens that are made of natural blockers such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide are the best for your baby.
Zinc oxide and titanium dioxide block harmful sunlight rays on the surface of the skin, unlike oxybenzone and octisalate that permeate the skin and defer the UV rays.
- Water-resistant. Sunscreens labeled “water-resistant” are the best for your baby because they withstand water and sweat for at least 40 or 80 minutes, depending on the formula.
Note, you need to reapply sunscreen on your child after 40 or 80 minutes to ensure that your baby is safe from UVs.
- At least SPF 15 and maximum SPF 50. A sunscreen of at least SPF 15 is most recommended for babies under six months. You can use a sunscreen of at least SPF 30 and a maximum SPF 50 for babies above six months.
- A cream sunscreen. Cream sunscreens are best for babies because they are easy to full cover on the sun-sensitive skin of your baby.
Warning; Avoid sunscreens that contain insect repellants because they are less active. You should buy an insect repellant separately, use it with the permission of your pediatrician, and apply it after rubbing in the sunscreen.
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Sandra W. Bullock is a grand-mom to two boys and is part of the review board here at Motherhoodhq.com. She is responsible for the quality control of content and is among our most experienced moms. She has over 20 years of writing parenting content online focussing on baby safety indoors and outdoors. She has written widely on babyproofing nurseries and homes for infants and toddlers and published work on privacy and the safety of baby monitors. She is a renowned advocate for non-wifi baby monitors that cannot be hacked and spends a lot of time educating parents on how to secure their homes – including ways to secure the baby from harm in and around homes. Sandra is a native of Atlanta where she also works. She can be reached using her email, Sandra.w(at)motherhoodhq.com