I don’t know about y’all but in my house, we are full on counting down until summer (19 school days left!)… and with summer around the corner it seems like the perfect time for a Friday Favorites about what I have found to be the best sunscreen for babies and kids…
I wish I could say that I was a life long sunscreen user & never did wrong to my skin, but that just isn’t the case. Before having littles of my own, I was more of the “just enough to keep from getting burned” type of sunscreen applier and while I am still not as good for myself as I should be, I am hardcore about it for my littles. Something about seeing their flawlessly perfect baby skin immediately made me want to preserve it and never see it burned. To date, we have done a pretty good job staving off the sunburns and only had very minor ones a small handful of times.
And I gotta say, with my littles loving to be outside and with as much time as we spend in the pool, that is no small feat. Over the past 9 and a half years of parenting littles, we have tried TONS of the options out there – and while there are a lot of good ones, I do have a definite favorite: SunBum.
So before I get into why I love SunBum, let me give you a quick run down in what my bestie, an amazing dermatologist with 3 redheaded littles of her own, tells me to look for in sunscreens for the kids.
Avoid Spray Sunscreens
There are a whole host of reasons I have been told to avoid the spray applications, some of which include protecting your little’s lungs, lack of oxybenzone free options & much higher chance of uneven applications, not to mention all the pollutants in them are super bad for our environment and the marine life. I’ve been hearing this recommendation since my oldest was a tiny tot and we generally do avoid sprays. That said, I am not perfect, and sometimes we do use a spray on the beach to avoid grinding sand into the kids. But we REALLY try to avoid the sprays as much as possible.
Broad Spectrum SPF 30 or higher
I feel like most of the kid options I see on the market fit this bill. Brand spectrum means that it protects against UVA & UVB rays. This is important because even with a high SPF, if it is not protecting against all the UVA rays, you are not really protected. And a not to the mamas, those UVA rays are the ones responsible for aging and wrinkling… yeah, let’s block those.
Titanium or Zinc Oxide Based
While there are a lot of chemicals in traditional (ahem – old school) sunscreens, everything I read and hear from Dr. G is that you REALLY want to avoid oxybenzone and avobenzone for your littles (and yourself). Little one’s skin is so much more sensitive and those nasty chemicals can really reactive with that baby (& kid) skin. There are SO many reasons to be checking the chemicals in your sun screen (and other products) but the EWG does a way better job of educating you on that then I can, so I will let you click on the link and learn from them.
So Why do I Love SunBum?
While there are definitely other good sunscreens on the market, SunBum, & specifically their Baby Bum, is by far my favorite for a few reasons.
First and foremost, it protects my littles. I cannot remember a single burn with this stuff no matter how much they sweat or stay in the water. My old favorite was great if they stayed dry but was not water resistant enough to keep up with my littles which lead to me having to reapply every 45 minutes… with 4 kids, that was a deal breaker.
Second, it glides on. Seriously, it feels good in your hands and feels moisturizing when you put it on the kids. And if you have ever tried to spread on a stiff sunscreen on a wiggly toddler, you know smooth application is huge with little ones.
Lastly, it stays put. We tend to use their sticks for the face which is my kids favorites – I say that I am painting them into animals as we put it on to make it fun. Even the big ones still like this ritual. But even their lotions seem to stay in place well enough that I don’t have littles coming to cry about sunscreen in their eyes. And y’all, that is something you REALLY want to avoid at all costs! I’m telling you, there is nothing harder to get out of their eyes or that will kill a pool or beach visit faster than sunscreen in the eyes.
So there you have it. I’ve linked my favorites from SunBum above but really I feel like you can’t go wrong with any of their products. In fact, if you want to feel like your littles smell like a beach vacation, check out the shampoo & conditioner too – another favorite of ours.
Anyway, hope that helps you prep for summer!