13 Best Sunscreen Sticks For Kids, As Per Cosmetic Dermatologists 2024

✔ Research-backed

When your children step out during the hot summers, facing the brunt of the hot sun can be a daunting task. In such cases, using the best sunscreen sticks for kids could help. These sunscreen sticks are non-sticky, easy to use, and portable. Since you might be confused about choosing, you may read the following post. We have curated a list of sunscreen sticks to help you select the right one for your child.

In This Article

13 Best Sunscreen Sticks For Kids And Babies In 2024

1. Best PABA-Free: Neutrogena Wet Skin Kids Sunscreen Stick

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4.6
Neutrogena Wet Skin Kids Sunscreen Stick Image: Neutrogena

This sunscreen stick from Neutrogena, a trusted brand, is water-resistant. It has SPF 70, broad-spectrum protection, protecting your child from UVA and UVB rays. The broad spectrum formula is non-greasy and provides approximately 80 minutes of protection with each application. It is also oil-free and has a PABA-free combination formula. The stick is mom-approved as its shape ensures hands-free and mess-free application. If you want a detailed review of this broad-spectrum sunscreen based on a tester’s experience, make sure to take a look at this video.

Item Weight: 0.09 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 0.88 x 3.38 x 6.75 inches

Pros

  • Helioplex broad spectrum
  • Works on wet and dry skin
  • Ideal for outdoor use
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Dermatologically tested and recommended

Cons

  • May stain fabrics
  • May melt easily

My Personal Experience

"It does not leave any white residue, encouraging my child to use it more willingly. Despite being water-repelling, it still provides broad-spectrum protection, making it a trustworthy option for my kid. Plus, reapplying it is so easy that even my little one can manage it on her own."


protip_icon Do remember
Besides using sunscreen, it is essential you cover them with appropriate clothing and avoid venturing out in the afternoons.

worth-buy-icon

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

The product has earned its stripes, with over 14,196 reviews on Amazon.

2. Best Fragrance-Free: Babyganics SPF 50 Travel Size Baby Sunscreen Stick

Made to be fragrance-free, this sunscreen with SPF 50 is suitable for children with sensitive skin. The formula belongs to the baby care specialist brand — Babyganics — and is devoid of octinoxate, oxybenzone, parabens, PABA, phthalates, and nanoparticles. Titanium dioxide and zinc oxide are the active ingredients in this sunscreen stick. In addition, this hypoallergenic mineral sunscreen is tear-free and water-resistant. It can provide reliable sun protection for up to 80 minutes in a single application. It comes in a pack of two sticks.

Item Weight: 0.09 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 6.13 x 5.75 x 7.5 inches

Pros

  • Formulated with plant-derived ingredients
  • Glides smoothly
  • Dermatologically tested
  • Cruelty-free

Cons

  • May leave a white cast
  • May be a bit thick in consistency

Our Reviewer's Experience

"Thanks to the mineral composition, it keeps my child’s skin shielded from the sun without causing allergic reactions. It does leave a visible film, but this makes it easier for him to prevent missing a spot during self-reapplication. I wish the stick were a bit larger though."


3. Best Non-Greasy: Cetaphil Sheer Mineral Sunscreen Stick

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4
Cetaphil Sheer Mineral Sunscreen Stick Image: Cetaphil

This sunscreen stick has zinc oxide and titanium dioxide as its active ingredients, and can be applied to the skin on any part of the body. The physical sunscreen is fragrance-free, locks moisture, and hydrates the skin. In addition, it has a non-greasy and non-comedogenic formula that blends quickly into the skin, protecting against sun rays for approximately 80 minutes.

You can apply it on delicate areas such as the lips, earlobes, and nose. The hypoallergenic and PABA-free formula is ideal for sensitive skin. It also contains Vitamin E for skin nourishment and is safe for both children and adults. You can also check this YouTuber’s detailed review to know more about the results after using this product from a tester’s experience.

Item Weight: 0.5 Ounces | Product Dimensions: 0.91 x 3.37 x 6.75 inches

Pros

  • Dermatologist-recommended
  • Glides easily
  • Reef-friendly
  • Free from mineral oil
  • Ideal for daily use
  • Hydrating formula

Cons

  • May feel slightly dry
  • May leave a white cast

Our Reviewer's Experience

"Its travel-friendly packaging allows my daughter to reapply the sunscreen even when she is at school. It leaves a slight white coating on my child's dark skin, but she does not seem to mind it as it relieves and protects her from sunburns and rashes."


worth-buy-icon

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

This product is a hit with users, evidenced by the 7,702 fine reviews on Amazon.

Neutrogena Wet Skin Kids Sunscreen Stick
Best PABA-Free
Babyganics SPF 50 Travel Size Baby Sunscreen Stick
Best Fragrance-Free
Cetaphil Sheer Mineral Sunscreen Stick
Best Non-Greasy
Weight 0.09 Pounds 0.09 Pounds 0.5 Ounces
Dimensions 0.88 x 3.38 x 6.75 inches 6.13 x 5.75 x 7.5 inches 0.91 x 3.37 x 6.75 inches
Rating
Reviews14,1962,5197,702
Price$1499.0$15.98$8.29
Buy NowBuy NowBuy Now

4. Best Plant-Based: Sun Bum SPF 50 Sunscreen Face Stick

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4.5
Sun Bum SPF 50 Sunscreen Face Stick Image: Sunbum

Sun Bum’s sunscreen stick features a quick-drying and fast-absorbing formula, which does not leave the skin feeling oily. The sunscreen has an SPF 50 broad-spectrum protection and a plant-based formulation with natural ingredients such as cocoa butter, shea butter, coconut oil, and zinc oxide.

The physical sunscreen is vegan, dye-free, and gluten-free, protecting against the sun’s rays for approximately 80 minutes. It contains dermatologically tested moisturizing ingredients and is free of sulfates, parabens, silicones, and phthalates. This lightweight and fragrance-free sunscreen is safe to use on children aged six months and older.

Item Weight: 0.03 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 3.3 x 0.9 x 6.8 inches

Pros

  • Suitable for face and body
  • Nourishing formula
  • Cruelty-free
  • Does not leave a white cast

Cons

  • May not be easy to use
  • Stick may be a bit firm

Our Reviewer's Experience

"It is the perfect choice for my kid as it does not cause any stinging sensation, even when applied near the eyes. The consistency is a bit thick, but rubbing it well into the skin avoids any filmy layer. I give it my approval for its long-lasting effect and anti-allergic formulation."


5. Best Non-Comedogenic: CeraVe Sunscreen Stick SPF 50

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4.4
CeraVe Sunscreen Stick SPF 50 Image: Cerave

One of the best sunscreen sticks, this product from CeraVe, a renowned and trusted brand, is water-resistant and offers broad-spectrum protection of SPF 50. The fragrance-free sunscreen is appropriate for all skin types and provides UVA/UVB protection. It contains ceramides that form a protective barrier on the skin. The best-selling formula is oil-free, lightweight, and non-comedogenic. This expert-approved product is safe for daily use and provides protection from sun rays for up to 40 minutes. For a thorough review of this lightweight mineral sunscreen, have a look at this YouTuber’s video.

Item Weight: 0.06 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 3.25 x 0.1 x 6.75 inches

Pros

  • 100% mineral sunscreen
  • Developed by dermatologists
  • Leaves no white cast
  • Travel-friendly
  • Recommended by the Skin Cancer Foundation for daily use

Cons

  • May be slightly sticky
  • May be small for some

Our Tester's Experience

"I found it to be a reliable choice for my son’s swimming classes because it truly is water-resistant. It fits nicely into his swimming kit without taking up space, and though it leaves a white residue, its sun protection properties make it a winner for me."


worth-buy-icon

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

About 2,944 reviewers on Amazon have given their seal of approval to the product.

6. Best Cruelty-Free: Thinksport Kids SPF 30 Mineral Sunscreen Stick

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4.6
Thinksport Kids SPF 30 Mineral Sunscreen Stick Image: Thinksport

This kids sunscreen stick with SPF 30 protects your child’s delicate skin from the sun’s UVA and the UVB rays. This mineral-based sunscreen stick provides 80 minutes of water resistance. The product ensures easy application and is free of parabens, PABA, BPA, BPS, oxybenzone, and aerosol. It is also cruelty-free. Your child can use this SPF stick on the face and body. It contains 20% zinc oxide and leaves no oily residue.

Item Weight: 0.04 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 0.5 x 3 inches

Pros

  • Suitable for sensitive skin
  • Chemical-free
  • Vegan-friendly
  • Biodegradable formula
  • Non-toxic

Cons

  • Consistency may be a bit creamy
  • May leave residue

Our Tester's Experience

"Thanks to its natural zinc-based formulation, it does not leave the skin feeling greasy. And I'm glad the applicator is easy to use and maneuver even for my child’s little hands. Does it leave a gray coating? Yes, it does, but only if it is not worked into the skin properly."


7. Best Water-Resistant: All Good Baby & Kids Mineral Sunscreen

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4.3
All Good Baby & Kids Mineral Sunscreen Image: All Good Makes Everything Better

Suited for sensitive skin, this sunscreen comes with SPF 50 protection and is easy to apply, leaving the child’s skin moisturized. It contains chamomile and coconut oil, which has a soothing effect on the skin. The wide mouth of the stick makes it easy to apply. The formula does not contain harmful ingredients, such as parabens, oxybenzone, and octinoxate. The hypoallergenic mineral sunscreen is gluten-free, cruelty-free, and remains water-resistant for up to 80 mins.

Item Weight: 2.75 Ounces | Product Dimensions: 1.75 x 1.75 x 5.1 inches

Pros

  • Non-greasy formula
  • Doesn’t contain chemical UV absorbers
  • Ocean- and reef-friendly
  • B-Corporation certified

Cons

  • May leave a white cast
  • May not glide smooth

Our Reviewer's Experience

"I finally found a sunscreen that suits my child’s delicate skin while efficiently shielding him from ultraviolet rays. It glides smoothly and is long-lasting, and I'd recommend this for children as it is free of harsh chemicals."


8. Best Hypoallergenic: Aveeno Kids Mineral SPF 50 Sunscreen Stick

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4.5

Aveeno’s sunscreen sticks feature an unscented formula, making it suitable for children with sensitive skin. The product has zinc oxide as its active ingredient and oat oil for skin nourishment. Its SPF 50 formula protects from the sun’s UVA and UVB rays. It is resistant to sweat and water, and will provide protection for around 80 minutes. The zinc sunscreen is hypoallergenic and free of dyes, phthalates, and parabens.

Item Weight: 0.18 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 1 x 2.1 x 4.28 inches

Pros

  • Non-greasy formula
  • Ideal for face and body
  • Glides smoothly on the skin
  • Leaves no residue
  • Pediatrician-recommended

Cons

  • May feel a bit heavy on the skin
  • May not last long

Our Reviewer's Experience

"This product stands out for me because of its sweat-resistance, making it perfect for my active child. She applies this sunscreen independently as its applicator is super easy to operate. It took her a while to get used to the zinc smell though."


protip_icon Quick fact
The SPF number indicates the amount of time the sun’s rays would take to burn your skin. SPF 30 allows 3% of UVB rays to penetrate your skin, while SPF 50 allows 2% (3).

9. Best Vegan: Boogie Block Baby Sunscreen

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4.4
Boogie Block Baby Sunscreen Image: Boogie Drop

The sunscreen stick’s formula is unscented and has an SPF of 50, protecting the child’s delicate skin from UVA and UVB rays. The active ingredient is zinc oxide. The formula is hypoallergenic and dermatologically tested, making the product largely safe and effective. In addition, this mom-tested sunscreen for kids is water-resistant and reef-safe. It absorbs quickly and does leave the skin greasy or messy, and will not clog skin pores. The water-resistant formula is suitable for use at beaches and poolsides.

Item Weight: 0.49 Ounces | Product Dimensions: 7 x 3.5 x 0.8 inches | Weight: 0.49 Ounces

Pros

  • Infused with 100% naturally derived ingredients
  • B-Corporation certified
  • USDA certified bio-based product
  • Vegan-friendly

Cons

  • May leave a slight white cast
  • May not rub well

Our Reviewer's Experience

"After trying out different naturally-derived sunscreens, I chose this for my child's skin. The sun protection it provides, even after water activities, is commendable, and it has neither irritated my child’s skin nor eyes so far."


10. Best Lightweight: Mustela Baby Mineral Sunscreen Stick

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4.5
Mustela Baby Mineral Sunscreen Stick Image: Mustela

This kids’ sunblock stick from Mustela, a baby care specialist brand, is made of 70% organic ingredients and comes with features, such as water resistance and fragrance-free formula. The lightweight mineral sunscreen offers SPF 50 broad-spectrum protection and contains no parabens, being gentle on the skin.

The active ingredient is zinc oxide, while other ingredients include shea butter, jojoba oil, sunflower oil, and avocado oil, which hydrate skin and lock the moisture. It is lightweight and will easily blend into the skin without leaving a greasy residue, making it a suitable mom’s choice.

Item Weight: 0.6 Ounces | Product Dimensions: 0.81 x 1.56 x 3.06 inches | Weight: 0.6 Ounces

Pros

  • Gentle formula is ideal for the face and body
  • Has no chemical UV filters
  • Safe for sensitive skin
  • Hydrating formula
  • Accepted by the National Eczema Association

Cons

  • May not spread easily
  • May be slightly small

Our Tester's Experience

"It fits into my child’s schoolbag and soccer kit in a space-efficient manner, encouraging him to reapply it on his own when I am not around. It is a bit oily, but I give it full marks for safeguarding my kid’s skin even when he is sweaty."


11. Best Biodegradable: Coral Safe SPF 50 Face Stick Sunscreen

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4.2
Coral Safe SPF 50 Face Stick Sunscreen Image: Coral Safe

This sunscreen stick for kids is water-resistant, unscented, and does not contain any harsh chemicals. It is biodegradable and can be used in saltwater since it is reef-safe (it does not contain compounds that harm marine life and coral reefs), making the sunscreen environmentally safe and effective. The active ingredient is zinc oxide, which is kid-safe. It also includes super hydrating ingredients such as aloe vera, coconut oil, and sunflower oil, which moisturize the skin.

The product is vegan and cruelty-free. You can take it to beaches and poolsides since it provides water-resistant coverage for up to 80 minutes. The compact shape of the stick makes it easy to carry.

Skin Type: All | Product Dimensions: 2 x 1 x 3.75 inches | Weight: 9.14 Ounces

12. Best Silicone-Free: Supergoop! Store Sunnyscreen Stick

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4.6
Supergoop! Store Sunnyscreen Stick Image: Supergoop!

Supergoop offers a combination of sunscreen lotion with zinc oxide, antioxidants, and olive oil. It is ideal for sensitive skin since it is pediatrician-tested. The stick has a silicone-free, unscented formula that is hypoallergenic and has a non-sticky texture. It is mess-free and will not leave behind a greasy residue. The zinc sunscreen offers SPF 50 protection against the sun’s UVA, UVB, and infrared rays. The sunscreen has a baby-friendly mineral, non-nano formula, which is free from parabens and phthalates. The waterproof formula provides broad-spectrum coverage and stays effective for up to 80 minutes.

Item Weight: 0.7 Ounces | Package Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 4.27 x 4.13 x 1.14 inches; 0.7 Ounces

Pros

  • Spill-proof
  • Infused with non-toxic ingredients
  • Nourishes and moisturizes the skin
  • PEG-free
  • Doesn’t leave a white cast

Cons

  • May need to be reapplied often

Our Reviewer's Experience

"The hypoallergenic formula suits my child’s sensitive skin. It is quite easy to apply, allowing me to get my child ready in no time even on hectic mornings. There’s a subtle sheen upon applying it, but this does not reduce its impressive anti-sun protection."


13. Best Gluten-Free: Babo Botanicals Baby Face Mineral Sunscreen Stick

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4.5
Babo Botanicals Baby Face Mineral Sunscreen Stick Image: Babo Botanicals

This mommy-approved product comes in a pack of two and is a zinc oxide-based, non-greasy sunscreen that absorbs quickly. The formula is water- and sweat-resistant for up to 80 minutes, making it ideal for use near water bodies. You can apply it to the sensitive areas of the face, such as ears, lips, and nose. The lightweight fragrance-free formula is 70% organic and offers SPF 50 protection. The mineral-based sunscreen is hypoallergenic and does not contain dairy, soy, gluten, paraben, and phthalates, making it an ideal baby-friendly choice.

Product Dimensions: 4 x 4 x 4 inches | Weight: 4.97 Ounces

Pros

  • Gentle on the skin
  • Packed with plant-based ingredients
  • Cruelty-free
  • Preservative-free
  • Dermatologist- and pediatrician-tested
  • B-Corporation certified

Cons

  • May not spread well
  • May be small

Our Reviewer's Experience

"It is gentle and sheer, leaving no pasty residue and allowing me to apply it to my child more easily. I do have to store it within a certain temperature range to prevent it from deforming, but the protection it delivers is remarkable."


*The prices provided in this article are based on the latest available information. However, they may vary due to changes in pricing by the seller and/or promotional offers.

How To Choose The Right Kids’ Sunscreen Stick?

Look for the following features while picking a sunscreen for kids.

  1. SPF: The sunscreen must have a minimum sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 for ample protection from sun exposure. If your child spends significant time under the sun, especially during summer, then pick a broad-spectrum sunscreen with a higher SPF.
  2. Age: Some sunscreen sticks are recommended for older children, while some are safe for babies and toddlers as well. Check the recommended age of the sunscreen before purchase.
  3. Ingredients: Make sure zinc oxide is an active ingredient since it is gentle on the skin yet effective. It forms an invisible protective layer. Opt for natural sunscreen sticks that contain doctor-approved or pediatrician-recommended ingredients.

Dr. Dmitriy Schwarzburg, a renowned New York-based dermatologist and owner of Skinly Aesthetics, says, “High SPF products are vital for protecting your baby’s delicate skin. Choose a product that is free of parabens and sulfates, and ensure the stick is unscented, as fragrances often contain alcohol, which tends to dry out the skin.”

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Are sunscreen sticks safe for kids?

Yes, sunscreen sticks specifically made of child-friendly ingredients such as zinc oxide or titanium oxide are safe for children (1). Using an adult sunscreen stick can make children’s skin more prone to burns. Nonetheless, always patch-test a new sunscreen stick before using it for the first time.

2. What SPF should I use on my child?

The American Academy of Dermatology Association recommends applying sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher and reapplying it every two hours when outdoors (1).

3. How long does a sunscreen stick last?

The FDA recommends that all sunscreens remain stable for at least three years. Always check the label for the expiration date; if it is not present, consider the sunscreen expired after three years of purchase (2).

Why Trust MomJunction?

Poulami Nag, our experienced writer and reviewer of skincare products, brings you this comprehensive list of mess-free and non-sticky sunscreen sticks for children. She has chosen those that block harmful UV rays. She has compared several highly-rated products to list the best ones that are safe and effective. Poulami has also checked each product’s ingredients list to ensure the products are safe for children.

The Bottom Line

Stepping outside during the scorching summer can be a daunting task for your little ones. In that case, the best sunscreen sticks for kids may come in handy and protect your little one from harmful UV rays. Our best picks include the water-resistant and hypoallergenic Neutrogena Wet Skin Kids Sunscreen Stick, the plant-based and fragrance-free Babyganics SPF 50 Travel Size Baby Sunscreen Stick, and the biodegradable and residue-free Thinksport Kids SPF 30 Mineral Sunscreen Stick. You may look for one made of safe and clinically proven ingredients. Pick one that suits your child’s skin type, emits a pleasing odor, and does not contain any chemicals that may be detrimental to your skin. Besides, pick one with a high SPF and ensure it is suitable for your child’s age.

Infographic: How To Choose The Right Sunscreen Stick For Children?

Sunscreen protects the child’s delicate skin from harmful UV rays. Using the right sunscreen, based on the outdoor settings, can prevent sunburn and reduce discomfort. Check out the following infographic to learn about the factors you must consider when purchasing the most suitable sunscreen for your child.

Tips For Selecting Sunscreen Sticks For Children (infographic)

Illustration: Momjunction Design Team


References

MomJunction's articles are written after analyzing the research works of expert authors and institutions. Our references consist of resources established by authorities in their respective fields. You can learn more about the authenticity of the information we present in our editorial policy.
  1. Sunscreen FAQS
    https://www.aad.org/media/stats-sunscreen
  2. Sunscreen: How to Help Protect Your Skin from the Sun
    https://www.fda.gov/drugs/understanding-over-counter-medicines/sunscreen-how-help-protect-your-skin-sun
  3. Ask the Expert: Does A High SPF Protect My Skin Better?
    https://www.skincancer.org/blog/ask-the-expert-does-a-high-spf-protect-my-skin-better/

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Dr. Dmitriy Schwarzburg is a board-certified cosmetic dermatologist with nine years of experience in the field. He did his medical education from McGovern Medical School in Houston, in addition to a bachelor’s degree in molecular biology from the University of Texas at Dallas. Dr. Schwarzburg was part of a groundbreaking cancer research team at MD Anderson Cancer Center, after which...read full bio