What’s the Best Sunscreen for Kids? Lotion, Spray, or Stick?

While most parents know that sunscreen is absolutely essential for kids after the age of six months, there’s still the matter of which product is best. Commonly, the choice comes down to lotion, spray, or stick. Because children have more delicate skin, they can get sunburns more easily – even on a cloudy day. On top of that, sunburn from too much time spent in the sun, without any type of protection, has been linked by scientists to a higher risk of skin cancer later in life.

Doctors Recommend Switching Sunscreens According to the Situation

A kid getting sunscreen applied on the face
As the weather warms up every year, parents stand in the drugstore aisle, asking themselves what’s the best sunscreen for their kids. In addition to factors like price and brand, parents must also solve the issue of formulation when making their sunscreen decision. Lotion, spray, and stick are all good products, but when it comes to kids, which one is best? According to dermatologist Dr. Julia Carroll, it’s all about personal preference, but parents should know more about the different versions of sunscreen and when to apply them.

Sunscreen Stick for the Face, Lotion for Base, and Spray for Touch-Ups

Rear View Of Child On Beach
When it comes to children, Dr. Carroll recommends a lotion as a base, a stick for the face, and a spray for quick touch-ups. The stick is good for the contours and a great way to get kids engaged without having them make a mess. It also doesn’t dilute with sweat and doesn’t go into the eyes, making it great for the areas around them.

Some Kids Don’t Like Lotion Sunscreen for Their Faces and Prefer Stick

The stick can also be a game-changer because kids often don’t like it when lotion goes on their faces. This has even led some parents to apply sunscreen on their kids with a makeup brush. Apparently, the practice helps with achieving full coverage. On the other hand, there’s sunscreen spray. Some people spray it on their kids and then don’t rub it in. While this does work, it’s far from ideal. The right way to use a sunscreen spray, and achieve proper coverage, is by spraying it into the hands and then applying it.

What’s the Best Sunscreen For Kids? Lotion, Spray, or Stick?Of course, there’s always the option where kids learn how to apply their sunscreen on their own. When kids get involved and take ownership of their skin health, it’s great for them and their parents, too. It’s a good start to have a child apply a stick sunscreen to their face and in the form of a game. One such game can be a challenge to cover every inch of their face before checking the results in a mirror.