Safe Sunscreens for Kids

Update:  I just found La Roche Posay’s SPF 60 Anthelios dermo-kids gentle sunscreen lotion at CVS today and I really like the texture and the smell so far.  We are at the pool today so will let you know how it fares.  On another note, our local CVS had an impressive selection of sunscreen from physical to chemical protection, across all price ranges.  Their buyer did an excellent job, and took many of the Amazon reviews into account.


In the quest for the perfect sunscreen, we’ve enlisted the Amazon army of reviews to find the best one.  We’ve spent hundreds of dollars trying to find one that doesn’t smell bad, is easy to slather on, and just one that our kid wouldn’t mind putting on.  I’m obsessed!  Behind brushing and flossing her teeth and wrangling her into the car seat, buttering on the sunscreen is one of the most challenging tasks as a parent living in Southern California.  Here are some of the ones we’ve tried so far:

Original Sprouts:

This brand holds more nostalgia than anything. It was recommended by Newport Hoag Hospital where we delivered the baby.  I started out with this brand, when she was first born, with the Shampoo & Body Wash, and the Scrumptious Body Lotion, all of which are good and have a nice scent.



If you believe all of the marketing hype then this is supposedly the safest one.  I got the most recommendations for this brand from my Facebook friends.

Blue Lizard (Baby / Sensitive version):

The bottle turns purple when it detects UV light, so as to remind you to put it on.  It felt nice and smooth, very creamy to put on.  It does leave a white cast.  This has titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, whereas some of the other ones, like Thinkbaby and Adorable Baby have only zinc oxide.

Adorable Baby:

We had the awful glue stick version.  Had I known there was a lotion instead, I would have gotten that instead.  Slathering on a glue stick sunscreen on your toddler is just awful.  I resorted to putting it on her when she was trapped in her car seat, but even then, it was like pulling teeth.  I then tried to convince her that it was makeup and that worked maybe once or twice, but that’s it.  This smells like coconut oil, which I like, but you have to make sure not to leave it in the heat or the sun, or else, it will start to smell rancid.

Neutrogena Pure and Free Baby (Improved Formula):

It’s okay.  One of my other friends said it was the only brand that didn’t make her toddler break out in eczema.  I don’t like the smell of pennies it leaves, and it will linger for days, even after taking a shower or washing up with soap.  I tried using Pond’s cold cream too because I was concerned that some of it was being left on her skin for days, but the smell was persistant.  Made me think it might’ve gotten on her hair.


Also, highly recommended by my Facebook friends, one of whom is very fair-skinned and Irish.  It does smell like pennies though.  I think it has just zinc oxide in it as well.

Sunscreen is a trigger for her eczema (I always misspell that word!  Why is there no x in exczema?!).  Does anyone have any other recommendations?

Next on my to try list is the Australian brand, Sun Bum.  I’ve seen it at Jack’s Surfboards in Irvine and at Great Wolf.


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