Sunscreen Tips and Links
The safest sunscreens are barrier sunscreens. These are sunscreens that use zinc oxide or titanium dioxide as the active ingredient, which sit on the skin to provide a shield from the sun. SPF 30-50 are best.
Chemical sunscreens are those that contain chemicals which are absorbed into the skin to provide protection. These are newer, so we do not have as many years of safety data to make conclusions. Although they do appear safe based on short term data, I recommend sticking to barrier sunscreens for now. Some of the active ingredients in chemical sunscreens include, but are not limited to, octinoxate, octocryleme, oxybenzone. Most sunscreens on the market today use these, including the one formulated for kids, so you have to check the ingredient list on any sunscreen you use on your child.
The Environmental Working Group provides ratings of sunscreens and more sun tips at
Two dermatologists give their own advice on sunscreen (geared towards adults) at
Do not use combination insect-repellent and sunscreen mixes. For more information on insect repellents see
Here are some examples of sunscreens that use barrier (mineral) ingredients, in alphabetical order:
Aveeno Mineral Block
Banana Boat Natural Reflect Sunscreen
Burt's Bees Sunscreen
California Baby Sunscreen
Mustela Sun Cream and Sun Lotion
Neutrogena Baby Pure and Free
|Here my son demonstrates proper beach attire with sunscreen (c) 2011|