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You may have to rethink many aspects of your daily routine because of your pregnancy. You probably never ate saltine crackers for breakfast, or planned your day around bathroom breaks, or cried during diaper commercials.

You may be looking at your personal care routine. Many pregnant women wonder about the safety of the products they use on their face, hair, and skin.

Sunscreen may cause hesitation. There have been allegations about the safety of sunscreen in the past.

But the American Academy of Dermatology is very clear that sunscreen is necessary to protect your skin from burns, premature aging, and all types of skin cancer.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists also encourages you to keep using sunscreen during pregnancy, as it can help reduce dark spots on the skin known as melasma.

There are a lot of sacrifices you make for the good of your baby (see you in 9 months, spicy tuna sushi roll), but protecting your skin from sun damage doesn’t have to be one of them.

There are safe sunscreen choices, and you should definitely use them during your pregnancies.

Yes, short answer.

It is important to wear sunscreen when you are pregnant to protect yourself from sun damage. You should be more aware of the ingredients in the sunscreens you are using.

Primarily, you’ll likely want to avoid the ingredient oxybenzone. Some research on animals suggests it may cause changes to the mammary glands.

Instead, sunscreens that contain zinc oxide may be a better option for both you and baby. Zinc oxide is a safer alternative to chemicals commonly found in sunscreens since it works by scattering the sun’s rays, ultimately preventing UV radiation from penetrating and damaging the skin.

How can you shop with confidence? Can you protect yourself and your baby at the same time?


The good news is that only two sunscreen ingredients, PABA and tolamine salicylate, have been found dangerous by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). And these ingredients are illegal in sunscreens sold in the United States.

Some other sunscreen ingredients — including oxybenzone, avobenzone, ensulizole, octisalate, homosalate, octocrylene, and octinoxate — have been used in U.S. sunscreens for many years. But the FDA has called for more studies on these ingredients to confirm their long-term safety.

“The FDA has established that zinc oxide and titanium dioxide are generally safe for use by all people. Natural minerals block the sun’s harmful rays from getting to your skin.”

Mineral sunscreens are made with zinc oxide and titanium dioxide.


Mineral sunscreens are the best for children, people who are pregnant or breastfeeding, and those with sensitive skin.

Mineral sunscreens are more expensive than their chemical counterparts. Typically products start at $6 and go up to $50 per tube or bottle. You can sometimes buy in bulk.

Broad spectrum and water-resistance

SPF 30 or higher is water resistant and should be applied 15 minutes before you go outside and reapplied every 2 hours.

There are many options when it comes to sunscreen. You have plenty on your mind as a new mom. We picked some great products to keep your skin healthy while you are busy.

We only used minerals as the active ingredients in our products. Mineral sunscreens are not absorbed into your bloodstream like chemical ingredients can be, so they are the safest option for your baby.

We also chose that sunscreen.

  • Highly rated.
  • Broad spectrum coverage protects against the harmful rays of the sun.
  • Have SPF 30 or higher.
  • There are different price points for them.

Is one sunscreen really better than another?

“We aren’t saying that one brand has been proven better or more effective than the others. We are looking at ingredients, SPF, price, brand reputation, availability, feel on the skin, and more to suggest our favorites.”

One SPF 30 sunscreen with zinc oxide is going to be the same as another SPF 30 sunscreen with zinc oxide. It is fair to prefer one over the other.

Price guide

  • $ = under $15
  • $$ = $15—$20
  • $$$ = over $30

We have the top picks for safe sunscreen for pregnant women.

Best overall

Thinksport Safe Sunscreen

  • Price: $
  • Key ingredients: non-nano zinc oxide

Made famous by their top-rated baby-safe sunscreen (Thinkbaby), Thinksport is the adult edition. (It’s worth noting that you certainly can use the baby version, and then keep using it for your baby too, once they’re 6 months old!)

Featuring a 20 percent zinc oxide formula, this SPF 50 sunscreen offers maximum protection from harmful rays and is classified as “very water resistant” — it provides protection for up to 80 minutes, even in the water. Users rave about the non-white, non-greasy, non-stinky formula. It’s also available in a stick applicator. It doesn’t get much better than that!


  • This formula is free from harmful substances.
  • Even in the water, this sunscreen can last up to 80 minutes.
  • This formula is tailored to people with sensitive, reactive skin who are prone to break out when wearing sunscreen.


  • The sunscreen can leave a white film on the skin for the first hour because it is a thicker consistency.

Best face sunscreen for use during pregnancy

Drunk Elephant Umbra Tinte Physical Daily Defense Broad Spectrum Sunscreen SPF 30

  • Price: $$$
  • Key ingredients: sunflower shoot extract, astaxanthin-rich algae extract, raspberry seed oil

“Drunk Elephant is known for its commitment to clean ingredients. The tinted face formula has zinc oxide, which is great for sun protection, and it is tinted so it doesn’t leave your face white. Users rave about how it looks and feels.”


  • “Reviewers say this sunscreen blends in well and won’t leave a white cast on your face.”
  • The ingredients are designed to blend together.
  • Users said this sunscreen makes a great base.


  • Reviewers have found that this sunscreen can peel off the skin.

Best makeup with SPF for use during pregnancy

Supergoop! (Re)setting 100% Mineral Powder SPF 35

  • Price: $$$
  • Key ingredients: mineral zinc oxide, ceramides, olive glycerides, coated silica

There are very few makeup products with mineral sunscreen that offer protection over SPF 30. This zinc oxide-containing powder from renowned sunscreen company, Supergoop, provides a high level of coverage in a powder formula that oily mamas especially love.

Some people found that the packaging was poorly made and created a powdery mess during application, but in general, reviews are positive.


  • You can apply sunscreen with one product.
  • This is a great sunscreen for people with oily or combination skin.


  • The application of the product can leave a mess.

Best sunscreen for use under makeup during pregnancy

La Roche-Posay Anthelios Ultra-Light Sunscreen Fluid SPF 50

  • Price: $$$
  • Key ingredients: thermal spring water, zinc oxide, titanium dioxide

This super-lightweight liquid sunscreen is made with zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, and antioxidants for broad spectrum, skin-friendly coverage. Many people love the fast-absorbing formula that makes it ideal for wearing under your regular makeup.

Other users found that it still felt too greasy or altered the texture of their makeup more than they liked.


  • The texture is lightweight and easy to blend.
  • It can be water resistant for up to 40 minutes.
  • Reviewers found this sunscreen to be a good base product to wear under makeup.


  • This sunscreen is more expensive than others.

Best natural sunscreens for use during pregnancy

Earth Mama Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 40

  • Price: $$
  • Key ingredients: shea, zinc oxide

Earth Mama is a brand loved by many moms for its nipple butter and belly butter products. Their zinc oxide-based sunscreen also features organic red raspberry seed oil and organic argan oil.

Many users loved the soft, all-natural formula for their dry pregnancy skin. Others found that it was a little too greasy or left white residue.


  • It is water-resistant for up to 40 minutes.
  • Users found the sunscreen was thick and kept them from getting sunburned.
  • Customers who were pregnant loved how this sunscreen smoothed out their dry skin.


  • It was difficult to get the sunscreen out of the tube.

Badger Clear Zinc Sport Sunscreen SPF 35

  • Price: $$
  • Key ingredients: clear zinc oxide

This zinc oxide-based sunscreen from Badger features a 98 percent organic, plant-based ingredient base, as well as being hypoallergenic and free from a number of harmful or irritating ingredients. It actually only contains five ingredients.

It comes in several SPFs, a water resistant sport version, and a daily version that isn’t water resistant but is a little less sticky.


  • Many users say this is a great sunscreen for playing sports or doing physical activity outdoors.
  • This sunscreen is made from 98 percent organic ingredients and is suitable for sensitive skin.


  • It feels heavy on the skin for some users.

Best stick application

Babo Botanicals Super Shield Sport Stick SPF 50

  • Price: $
  • Key ingredients: avocado, jojoba, shea butter

This zinc oxide stick sunscreen is easy to throw in your purse or bag for easy application out and about. It’s full of organic, safe ingredients that are good for your skin and safe for baby.

Some users found the white residue was a little hard to rub in, and others mentioned that the product was smaller than expected.


  • This sunscreen is easy to pack and travel-friendly because of its small size.
  • The stick roll-on form makes it easy to rub in.


  • “Some users said it didn’t provide enough sun protection.”

Best spray sunscreen

Supergoop! 100% Mineral Sunscreen Mist

  • Price: $$$
  • Key ingredients: sunflower seed, marigold extract, chamomile

Although Supergoop! is a pricey option, many mamas love this non-aerosol, mineral-based, spray-on sunscreen. It’s lightweight and sprays on white — but then blends in invisibly.

It’s SPF 30 and full of skin-friendly ingredients like marigold extract, vitamin E, and omega-3 fatty acids.


  • This sunscreen will absorb into your skin even though it is sprayed on white.
  • Many users with sensitive skin say this works well.


  • “The nozzle got stuck, so some users couldn’t get the sunscreen to spray.”

Best budget sunscreens

Neutrogena SheerZinc Face Dry-Touch Sunscreen

  • Price: $
  • Key ingredients: zinc oxide

Many people love the powder-dry feeling of this zinc oxide sunscreen lotion from Neutrogena. It’s free of fragrances, which can be irritating to pregnant noses.

It’s available in SPF 30 or 50, free of harmful ingredients, and a great price for a mineral sunscreen — especially one that looks and feels good to boot.


  • “The sunscreen doesn’t feel heavy on the skin and users love it.”
  • It can be water resistant for up to 80 minutes.
  • Many users have said that the zinc oxide in this sunscreen absorbs really well and makes for a great mineral sunscreen.


  • Users with darker complexions have said that it leaves a white stain on the skin.

Alba Botanica Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30

  • Price: $
  • Key ingredients: zinc oxide

This SPF 30, zinc oxide-based sunscreen lotion from Alba Botanica is one of the best deals out there for a physical (mineral) sunscreen. It still has tons of plant oils and skin-friendly vitamins, while being free of harmful chemicals and easy on the wallet.

Despite claiming to be fragrance-free, this sunscreen has some users who feel it has a bothersome scent.


  • People with sensitive or inflammatory skin can benefit from the natural ingredients.
  • Many users thought this was a good sunscreen to wear.


  • Some pregnant customers were irritated by a scent.

Sunscreen Price SPF Type Customer rating
Thinksport Safe Sunscreen $$ 50 liquid 4.5 stars
Drunk Elephant Umbra Tinte Physical Daily Defense $$$ 30 liquid 3 stars
Supergoop! (Re)setting 100% Mineral Powder $$$ 35 powder 4 stars
La Roche-Posay Anthelios Ultra-Light Sunscreen Fluid $$$ 50 liquid 4.5 stars
Earth Mama Mineral Sunscreen Lotion $ 40 liquid 4 stars
Badger Clear Zinc Sport Sunscreen $$$ 35 liquid 4.5 stars
Babo Botanicals Super Shield Sport Stick $ 50 stick 4.5 stars
Supergoop! 100% Mineral Sunscreen Mist $$$ 30 spray 4 stars
Neutrogena SheerZinc Face Dry-Touch Sunscreen $ 50 liquid 4.5 stars
Alba Botanica Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen $ 30 liquid 4 stars

Before buying sunscreen, you should check to see if your skin has changed while you are pregnant.

For example, some people find their skin becomes more sensitive, or they develop acne. If this is the case for you, find a sunscreen that addresses these concerns.

It is beneficial to choose a sunscreen based on how much you use it, what grade of SPF you need, and its price.

If you plan on using makeup with sunscreen, you should take into account what sunscreen will layer best with the products you use.

Which sunscreens are not safe during pregnancy?

A 2018 study on pregnant or lactating mice found the use of oxybenzone caused changes to the mammary glands.

While this study was only done on animals, you should steer clear of any formulas with this ingredient.

In fact, many sunscreen manufacturers are moving away from including it in their formulas because it may damage coral reefs.

There is not a lot of research on what sunscreens are best for pregnant women. You should still choose a formula that has a higher SPF.

Which ingredients are the best in sunscreens for pregnant people?

When you are pregnant, it is best to avoid chemical sunscreens and use physical sunscreens. You should look for a sunscreen that contains titanium dioxide or zinc oxide.

Mineral sunscreens are also recommended for breastfeeding.

At what stage of pregnancy should I start using sunscreen?

It is recommended that you wear sunscreen during your entire pregnancy.

“If you can’t wear sunscreen during the day, try to stay out of the sun during the day.”

Sunscreen is important for everyone, including pregnant people. It helps protect your skin from all types of skin cancer, premature aging, wrinkles, dark spots, and burns.

The FDA regulates sunscreens. Zinc oxide and titanium dioxide are minerals that are safe.

There are a number of sunscreens that can protect your skin and baby from harmful rays. It is important to use these sunscreens. Get that bumped out for some fresh air.