EWG and Cool Mom Picks agree: These 3 sunscreens rock

EWG and Cool Mom Picks agree: These 3 sunscreens rock

Does anyone else feel like buying sunscreen takes a PhD and two hours internet research? I do. And then I’m too tired to swim. That’s why we’re happy to share some family-tested sunscreens that we’ve thoroughly tested– and we checked the EWG Skin Deep list, too, where top sunscreens are rated with the lowest numbers. (But take some of it with a grain of salt – not every ingredient that is of concern to them, like fragrance, is of concern to everyone.)

Sunny times are here again!

Our family of four rotated through three different product lines this summer, and I’m happy to report that none of us had a single sunburn, even after trips to St. Augustine, Disney World, and our neighborhood pool. That’s a huge accomplishment, especially when you consider my husband’s super fair skin–which he
assures me is just a primer.

1. Episencial Sunny Sunscreen SPF 35

Episencial Sunny Sunscreen
EWG rating: 2
Protective ingredients: 5% Titanium Dioxide, 5% Zinc Oxide
Where you can get it: Whole Foods, Amazon.com, Target.com, Diapers.com, Ecomom.com
How much it costs: $14.99 for 4 oz.
Why we love it:  Easy to find, great price point, and my kids love the official Eric Carle artwork on the bottle. This great range also includes fantastic balm, butter, and a super-foamy, extra-gentle bubble bath that gets major raves at bathtime.

2. Goddess Garden sunscreens

Goddess Garden Baby Sunscreen

BABY Natural Sunscreen SPF 30
EWG rating: 1
Protective ingredients: 20% Zinc Oxide
Where you can get it: Goddess Garden How much it costs: $13.99, 3.5 oz.
Why we love it: It boasts the most easy to decode ingredients list of any sunscreen I’ve ever used– the Baby sunscreen has only 10, and several are organic. The smell is light and nice. And for a baby sunscreen, it rubs in easily and is tear-free.

Goddess Garden Sunscreen for kids

KID’S Natural Sunscreen Spray SPF 30
EWG rating: 3
Protective ingredients: 7% Titanium Dioxide, 6% Zinc Oxide Where you can get it: Goddess Garden
How much it costs: $19.99, 8 oz.
Why we love it:: Because it’s great for dads! This one is my husband’s all time favorite for himself and the kids. Nice, light smell, great spray bottle, rubs in easily. Best spray we’ve ever used. I also tried the Goddess Garden Kid’s Natural Sunscreen SPF 30, which worked just fine and clocks in at $13.99 for 3.5 oz. But the BABY and Spray were our two favs.

3. MD Moms Baby Silk SPF 30 + moisturizing lotion

MD Moms sunscreen
EWG rating: 3
Protective ingredients: 8% Titanium Dioxide, 5% Zinc Oxide Where you can get it: mdmoms.com, Amazon, and a variety of stores
How much it costss: $24, 2.7oz
Why we love it:: Because it’s gentle, approved for infants, sweat-proof, and TSA-approved for carry on luggage. This line was developed by pediatricians and is one of the few truly fragrance-free sunblocks I’ve tried.

[image at top via]


Senior Associate Editor Delilah S. Dawson puts the chic in geek. Ask her anything about Star Wars. Really.


  • Reply July 11, 2011

    Sarah M.

    Thanks for the sunscreen input. I spent all spring searching for the best sunscreen for my kiddos. I used Episencial sunscreen and their winter balm (spf 6) all winter and was pleased. That being said, the sunscreen does not hold up for long on my kiddos during the summer. They’ve both been burnt within an hour of me applying it the few times we’ve used it. I’m going to save it for winter and have, instead, started using Coppertone Water Babies Pure & Simple which also ranks a 2 on EWG’s sunscreen list.

  • Reply July 11, 2011


    I use this Neutrogena one… because it’s the same Titanium Oxide/Zinc Oxide idea and much more affordable! Plus, I can just pick it up at the grocery store.


  • Reply July 12, 2011


    I bought several brands to try recently and Goddess Garden has been my favorite by far! I’ve never actually used a sunblock that smelled GOOD before. Some of them are inoffensive but GG smells so nice that I want to apply more of it, which is always a good thing.

  • Reply July 18, 2011

    Mrs. Q.

    Are any of these TRULY tear-free? I’ve spent a fortune on non-sting, no-run, tear-free lotions, and somehow one of my two kids always ends up rubbing their stinging eyes.

  • Reply July 18, 2011


    Unfortunately, the 3 rating on the Goddess Garden Kids spray is not due to fragrance, but to Nano Particles. This is of actual REAL medical concern as it’s been proven that nano particles can penetrate the skin barrier. Not sure it’s responsible to dismiss the rating out of hand (or as the writer put it –take it with a grain of salt) Usability is one thing, but safety shouldn’t be ignored.

  • Reply July 19, 2011

    9 Months Later

    I love Dr. T’s Supergoop. Works great and can be used on newborns as it is organic. They also have a sunscreen/bug spray that is deet free. Their philosophy is a higher spf isn’t the answer it’s all about the re application. Defiantly would recommend trying it they also have lot different application options.

  • Reply March 23, 2012


    I use Coppertone Water Babies Pure & Simple Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 50, EWG rating: 2; affordable and it worked great on my very fair, sensitive skin, 3/4’s Irish baby in Mexico!

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