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.
Goddess Garden: Kid's Spray, Baby, and Kid's Cream
Ease of Application
EWG rating: 1 (baby), 2 (kids), 3 (kid’s spray). The spray sunscreen (NOT continuous spray) has a few ingredients rated 4-6 at EWG, but I think it might be unfairly labeled with a higher number simply because it’s a spray, but it’s not aerosolized. EWG’s rating system ranks the same ingredient as more dangerous when it’s a spray, but the site still says the particles of minerals are >100 NM, which is good.
Active ingredient(s): titanium dioxide (6-7%), zinc oxide (6%) in kids, zinc oxide (20%) in baby, non nano particles all around
Other ingredients: Aloe Vera, Glycerin, Glyceryl Caprylate, Glyceryl Stearate, Glyceryl Stearate Citrate, Glyceryl Undecylenate, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Helianthus Annus (Sunflower) Oil, Iron Oxide, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Lecithin, Polyhydroxystearic Acid, Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Stearic Acid, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Xanthan Gum Certified Organic
Antioxidants added: Vitamin E, green tea and more
Ease of application: +/- depends on style, see below
Scent: kids = very light lavender; baby = unscented
Water resistant? The baby version could still be seen after a full hour of swimming; the others state “water resistant” on them, but I couldn’t be as sure as they blend in better.
My experience: We’ve been around and around on this one as to whether we’d recommend it or not.
UPDATE: demoted to this section from “recommends” July 2013. Too many questions about the size of the particles, although I think this is still a good product. There are just plenty of good ones that I’m more sure about.
The kids versions are both fairly creamy (the website says they use a “sheer zinc oxide” but assures us it’s non-nano), and I admit that when it got warm this spring (2012) I grabbed the Goddess Garden spray first because of ease of use. There’s no easy way to pack the bottle for long travel (see photo above), but oh my – one hand grab and squirt is great! You do still have to rub the lotion IN with your hand, unlike some of the spray style chemical sunscreens.
The baby version, unfortunately, was extremely hard to rub in. Not just that it stays white, but it got very clumpy and cakey, really quite yucky on the skin.
All of the bottles/tubes have stayed emulsified and nice over the winter, so I think I’d still recommend the spray particularly, just for its convenience. Realize that as with ALL zinc-based creams, you’re still going to have a harder time making it actually disappear than a chemical screen.
Lots of people love Goddess Garden, and it always surprises me – but perhaps they’re slowly improving? Is that possible?
See for yourself in this video on Facebook demonstrating 8 of the sticks in this review!
Star Feature: Great list: reef safe, vegan, gluten-free, non-nano particles, organic ingredients, run by moms who care! The baby sunscreen has good intentions with the ingredients: only zinc oxide, no nut oils, unscented – but it just doesn’t rub in well.
- Vegan, gluten-free, organic
- Spray option that isn’t aerosol
- Most rub in well
- Baby formula doesn’t rub in
- Questions about size of particles
- Kids has titanium dioxide
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!