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Mineral Sunscreen Review: Alba Botanica Green Tea and Kids Sunblocks

Looking for a reef-safe sunscreen that uses only zinc oxide as an active ingredient? You may want to keep looking!

Safe Natural Mineral Sunscreens that are just awful. Over 100 brands tested by one family.

With over 100 natural mineral sunscreens tested by my family of six in the past 10 years, we’ve had our share of miserable failures. White out? Paint drying? Sticky, chalky, makes you look like an alabaster statue or Casper the ghost?

I will tell you this: it’s entirely possible to find a zinc oxide sunscreen that is reef safe, really works, and goes on smoothly.

This brand is not one of them.

Read the full review below to find out all of its transgressions, and then be sure to go to my ultimate guide to natural mineral sunscreens to find a safe sunscreen that really works.

Alba Botanica Hawaiian Green Tea Natural Sunblock and Alba Botanica Very Emollient Sunblock – Kids
  • Ease of Application
  • Clean Ingredients
  • Water Resistant


Alba Botanica Green Tea Hawaiian Sunscreen Review Price Range: $$$$

EWG rating: 3

SPF: 45

Active ingredient(s): homosalate (10%), Octocrylene (10%), Octinoxate (7.5%), Octisalate (5%), Titanium Dioxide (2%)

Other ingredients: Aqua (water), aloe barbadensis leaf juice, caprylic/capric triglyceride, dimethicone, ethylhexyl palmitate, sorbitan sesquioleate, glycerin, butyrospermum parkii (shea butter), helianthus annuus (sunflower) seed oil, simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) seed oil, polyglyceryl-3 ricinoleate, vitis vinifera (grape) seed oil, calendula officinalis flower extract, chamomilla recutita (matricaria) flower extract, magnesium sulfate, silica, sodium chloride, tocopheryl acetate, benzyl alcohol, …

Antioxidants added: Vitamin E

Where to purchase: Amazon, for Canada, HerbsPro

Ease of application: + Rubs in easily and forms no visible barrier, creamy, slightly greasy

Scent: both very pleasant, “smells like candy” says a friend (Kids)

Water resistant? Claims to be, but it didn’t seem like it.

My experience: It was interesting to be able to pit these safer chemical sunscreens (they don’t contain oxybenzone) again the mineral-based ones. There wasn’t one time when someone burned on the mineral side and didn’t with this one, and in fact, my husband’s friends thought that the Badger SPF 30 worked better than this one.

Katie’s thoughts: If you have to have a chemical sunscreen, Alba has some decent options, but EWG score-wise, there are others that are better (see the end of the post for some examples).


  • No oxybenzone
  • Smells like candy


  • Chemical sunscreen
  • Allowed some burns

Wondering if this one is the very best natural sunscreen for your family?

I organized alllll the sunscreens we reviewed in each one’s recommendation category – one page, at-a-glance to find out what is safe to buy AND works! Print it or save to your phone for reference!

The guide also includes answers to questions people ask me all the time:

  • Which brand rubs in the clearest?
  • What’s the best for all day outdoor sports?
  • How do I save money on natural sunscreens?
  • What looks good on ladies’ faces?
  • Is there an option that is FAST to apply to wiggly kids?

I’ll send a copy to your email so you can see it right away and find it again later!

Have you tried this sunscreen? Was your experience similar to mine?

Unless otherwise credited, photos are owned by the author or used with a license from Canva or Deposit Photos.