Safe Sunscreens that Rub in Easily


Safe Sunscreens that Rub in Easily via

The most common question I get about safer sunscreens is whether or not they are hard to rub in and leave an obvious white residue behind. If you have kids, you’ll know this is complaint #1 when it comes to sunscreen! When they were younger, my boys would get so annoyed with me that by the time we were done with sunscreen application we were all CRABBY!! Seriously, I’ve had to give up on some brands because they were just too challenging to deal with.

Now I’m always on the search for well-rated sunscreens that rub in quickly and don’t leave that icky white sheen. Last year we beach-tested some safer sunscreens and found some good ones. Here are two newer sunscreen brands that I’ve also been happy with.

Bare Belly Organics via mindfulmomma.comBare Belly Organics

Developed by two moms, Lisa and Jill, Bare Belly Organics makes mineral based sunscreen using safe, organic ingredients as a base.

Skin Deep rating: 1 (best possible)

Active ingredients: Non nano Zinc Oxide (25%)

Other ingredients (varies by product): shea butter, coconut oil, sesame oil, jojoba oil, avocado oil, beeswax, vitamin E, aloe, lavender and/or vanilla essential oil

Fav Features:

  • Love the simple list of recognizable ingredients
  • Water resistant  for up to 80 minutes (longer than many other brands)
  • The body and face sticks are a super convenient way to apply sunscreen

Flip Side: The cream in the jar is a bit greasy going on, although it absorbs nicely and leaves your skin super soft.


  • Cream (4 oz jar) – SPF 30 – $14.95
  • Body Stick (2.6 oz) – SPF 34 – $14.95
  • Face Stick (0.7 oz) – SPF 34 – $7.90

Buy It: Get 10% off your order using code MINDFULMOM at checkout (through the end of June, 2014)

Goddess Garden Sunny Face via mindfulmomma.comGoddess Garden

Boulder, CO mom Nova Covington created Goddess Garden after discovering that her daughter was allergic to the chemicals in traditional bath and body care products.

Skin Deep rating: 1 (best possible)

Active ingredients: Non nano Zinc Oxide and Titanium Dioxide (varies by product)

Other ingredients: Varies by product but all ingredients are listed on the website.

Fav Features:

  • Made with a sheer form of zinc oxide that is virtually transparent
  • Up to 92% certified organic ingredients
  • Family sized lotion available
  • Both continuous spray and pump spray bottles available

Flip Side:  I noticed that the Sunny Face facial cream goes on a little splotchy at first. Just give it 30 seconds and then continue to rub in, and it will disappear into your skin perfectly, I promise!


  • Cream (3.4 oz tube) – SPF 30 – $14.95
  • Spray (6 oz bottle) – SPF 30 – $21.99
  • Sunny Face (3.4 oz tube) – SPF 30 – $17.99 (this is the only Garden Goddess product I’ve tried)
  • See more on the website

Note: The only Goddess Garden product I’ve personally tried is the Sunny Face cream but many other bloggers I respect have given the whole Goddess Garden line a big thumbs up.

BuyIt: Goddess Garden products can be found at Whole Foods Market, Abe’s Market online as well as the company’s online store. Get 20% off your order with code mindfulmomma (good through 6-30-14).

Do you struggle with sunscreen application on your kids? Any tips for making it easier?

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Image credit: Jeff Miller Photography with permission

(Disclosure: I received free samples of Bare Belly Organics and Goddess Garden sunscreen products in exchange for my honest opinion.)

About Micaela

Micaela Preston is a marketing and communications consultant specializing in natural, organic and eco-friendly products and the health and wellness space. Micaela is available as a social media manager, green lifestyle writer, public speaker, brand ambassador and marketing manager.


  1. We’ve used Goddess Garden lotions and sprays and love them! I like the idea of bars too. Especially for faces. Anything to make sunscreen application (esp. with little kids!) easier.

  2. I’ve never tried Bare Belly, I’ll check them out! I like Garden Goddess too, they have a good spray on suncream!

  3. I love that these come in stick form!

  4. I would love to try that stick…my boys HATE getting sunscreen on!

  5. That stick is interesting. I wonder how long it will last and if you can tell that you have good coverage?

    • Hi Jen – I think you have to be careful about coverage – as with any sunscreen. Once it’s on you can rub it around to make sure it’s spread evenly. Not sure yet how long the stick lasts since we just started using it! My son used it this morning for an outdoor field trip. That will be a good test for us!

  6. Honest Company and Beautycounter are also both great. Very different product lines but both are easy to apply and rated safe. The Beautycounter ones are a little pricey but they smell awesome and feel amazing.

    • Hi Dori – I just met Mia from Beauty Counter last week! The products sound very nice but I haven’t tried them yet. Glad to hear you like the sunscreen.

  7. Love the goddess garden products. My boys loved the spray version. Spray and go.

    • Yes – I’ve noticed my boys prefer the spray type as well Anna! At least Goddess Garden is a safer version than most spray sunscreens!

  8. Tried the sunny baby. It protected my skin, no burn. It does make your skin look white though. It did not rub in clear.

    • Hi Nan – sorry for the confusion on the Sunny Baby sunscreen. It doesn’t rub in clear but it doesn’t leave a thick white film like so many other zinc & titanium based sunscreens do. I found a little bit of whiteness remains but not much – it’s all relative!

  9. Angelia says:

    I find the goddess garden spray very white and hard to run in. I look like a ghost and so does my son it takes so much rubbing. Don’t know if I like it❔

    • Sorry to hear that Angelia. The safer sunscreens are never going to rub in quite as easily as the conventional brands – but I’ve found Goddess Garden to be one of the better ones. Definitely give the company your feedback – they are always looking to improve on their formulas!


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