The Best Sunscreen Sticks for Active Kids and Adults
Let’s state the obvious: sunscreen is essential for outdoor enthusiasts of all ages and skin tones. But when you’re three miles from your day hike or about to catch a big wave, you might forget that your initial layer of protection isn’t enough – sunscreen should be reapplied every two hours. , especially if you are wet or sweaty. Fortunately, a new generation of sunscreen sticks offers a portable solution. They’re small, spill-proof, and easy to use when you’re on the go, or just need to slip an extra layer of coverage over your nose.
These are our favorites to carry in our pockets and store in the car for quick use throughout the day. All but one are mineral formulas that rely on titanium dioxide or zinc oxide to physically block UVA and UVB rays rather than oxybenzone and octinoxate, ingredients more likely to irritate skin. sensitive and which can be toxic to fragile environments such as coral reefs.
Ideal to apply everywhere
All Good SPF 50+ Sport Mineral Sun Butter Stick ($17 for 2.75 oz)
This larger than average circular stick makes it easy to cover your chest, arms and legs with just a few passes. Its 25% zinc oxide concentration is on the higher end, which means a lot of work goes into erasing the telltale white cast iron. (Many dermatologist-approved mineral sunscreens are formulated with between 10 and 20 percent zinc, or mixed with titanium dioxide if they fall below 10 percent.) But the nourishing blend of coconut oils , calendula and jojoba of this stick is worth it.
Ideal for children
Super goof! Sunnyscreen 100% Mineral Stick SPF 50 ($24 for 0.7oz)
We were impressed by the ease with which this fine formula melts into skin making application quick on squirming youngsters. Its 21% concentration of zinc oxide offers very strong sun protection while the other ingredients, including shea butter, beeswax and flaxseed oil, are all hypoallergenic and approved by pediatricians. Bonus: The faint coconut scent is harmless, unlike some sunscreens that smell like chalk or like Pina Coladas.
Ideal for water Sports
Stream2Sea EcoStick SPF35+ ($14.95 for 0.5oz)
All of the mineral formulas here are water resistant, but Stream2Sea’s range of EcoSticks were the hardest to wash off during testing. Its unique application—the skin takes on a blue Where pink cast; once the color has faded, it’s time to reapply, making it easy to see how well your skin is protected even after hours in the ocean. Stream2Sea also proves its reef safety claims by testing the impact of its ingredients on aquatic ecosystems.
Super goof! Glow Stick SPF 50 ($25 for 0.7oz)
This shimmering, gel-like solid contains avobenzone, octisalate and octocrylene, benchmark ingredients for chemical sunscreens. The formula glides on skin so easily you almost don’t feel it and leaves a subtle, hydrating glow when dry. We especially liked using the Glow Stick to reapply face sunscreen several times a day.
Cetaphil Sheer Mineral Sunscreen Stick Broad Spectrum SPF 50 ($7.99 for 0.5 oz)
Cetaphil is known for its sensitive skin friendly products, and this new sunscreen stick is no different. It’s hypoallergenic, lightweight, and contains a blend of 6% titanium dioxide and 4.7% zinc oxide, just enough mineral protection to be effective, but not enough to spend several minutes rubbing it in.