Looking for a reef-safe sunscreen that uses only zinc oxide as an active ingredient? You’re making a smart choice!
My family has tested over 100 natural mineral sunscreens over the last 10 years, so we know what really works. This brand is pretty good, but in my opinion, if you’re looking for the cleanest ingredients and smoothest application, then head over to my ultimate guide to natural mineral sunscreens and grab one of my top recommended zinc oxide sunscreens instead. My standards are really high though, so this one is still pretty good. 🙂
You can read all the details below to find out why this safe sunscreen brand did not make my top recommended list.
Babo Botanicals Clear Zinc Sunscreen and Sport Stick
Ease of Application
Price Range: $$$$
EWG rating: 1 for cream, 4 for stick (although no ingredients are over a 2)
Active ingredient(s): non-nano zinc oxide (22%)
Other ingredients: Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter*, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract*, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract*, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Caprylhydroxamic Acid, Caprylyl Glycol, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract*, Natural Fragrance, Glycerin, Glyceryl Stearate, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Methylcellulose, Nasturtium Officinale Flower/Leaf Extract*, Pueraria Lobata Root Extract*, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil*, Sodium Bicarbonate, Spiraea Ulmaria Flower Extract* , Stearic Acid, Water, Xanthan Gum. *Certified Organic Ingredients
Antioxidants added: sunflower oil, green tea extract (jojoba oil, cocoa butter and Vitamin E in the stick)
Ease of application: + nice and creamy, spreads nicely. The stick is VERY thick and hard to apply, made only for small areas like cheeks or lips.
Scent: the fragrance-free lotion just smells like lotion; the stick is kind of strong like the beeswax I guess
Water resistant? The stick is very resistant, even after washing dishes with it on my hand; the lotion actually came off on my finger when wet, so I don’t hold much hope for that one
My experience: I’ve only had these samples in my hands a few days, so we haven’t field-tested them. The stick holds a lot of promise for tough areas like cheekbones, lips, ears, but I would not want to use it all over. It would take forever to rub in. The lotion glides on well, but I’m curious how it would hold up to swimming. As for ingredients, the stick has nicely pure ingredients through and through in my opinion, but the lotion leaves a bit to be desired. It doesn’t have anything that’s been proven to be harmful, but compared to some others that I’ve reviewed that have 100% food-grade or plant-and-mineral-sourced ingredients, I don’t love seeing sodium benzoate and potassium sorbate in there, two preservatives that are sourced naturally but have questionable reputations.
UPDATE 2016: I told you I’d come back to test better! Over the winter the stick formed a really solid kind of “seal” on the top such that the first use I had to throw away ½ centimeter or so. And then it was really gooey and didn’t go one nicely at all. This one doesn’t have lasting power! The cream wintered fine and is still creamy, but it really needs to be rubbed in immediately for best results. It makes streaks if you don’t. I’d say it rubs in exactly like Goddess Garden‘s creams. Plus we had two different instances where we wondered if this one was allowing burns through more quickly than other similar creams. I’m just not sure it’s to be trusted.
UPDATE 2018: We retested the stick, and as long as you buy the oblong version (Super Shield Sport Stick SPF 50) and not the circle, it’s MUCH better. It contains 17% zinc oxide and goes on great, comparable to other “top recommended” sticks we tested.
- Good ingredients and water resistance for the stick
- Lotion doesn’t seem to be waterproof, has some questionable ingredients, and can go on streaky
- Stick does not overwinter well and is only made for very small areas
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!