Dad applying sun cream to his sons face
  • Baby & Child
  • Sun & travel

Which SPF is best for kids? SPF50 vs SPF30

Is SPF30 or SPF50 better for toddlers? Is SPF30 good enough for older children? We get asked questions like these all the time, and if you’re unsure which is the best sunscreen for your child, we’re here to help.

By Hannah Mepham

7 Minute read

We've created this comparison guide to help you decide which sun cream is best for your child.

We’ll explain the difference between SPF30 and SPF50, and introduce you to our natural and organic kids’ sunscreens.

Should kids wear SPF30 or SPF50 sun cream?

The first thing to know is that you're doing a great job encouraging your child to apply SPF from a young age. This means sunburn is not a part of their childhood memories and helps to protect their skin’s future health.

woman applying sun cream to child

Of course, newborns and young infants should not be exposed to direct sunlight, but toddlers, pre-teens and teens will all need to use a high-factor SPF when exposing their skin to sunlight.

In the UK, SPF30 and SPF50 are both considered high factors. Here’s how they differ:

  • SPF30 shields against 97% of skin-burning UVB rays
  • SPF50 shields against 98% of skin-burning UVB rays

Let’s take a look at our SPF50 kids’ sun cream and SPF30 kids’ sun cream in a bit more detail.

SPF30 vs SPF50

Organic Children

Organic Children

UVB rating

Shields against 98% UVB

Shields against 97% UVB

Protects against UVA




Lightly Lavender

Unscented and free from essential oils

Kind to sensitive skin



Water repellent



Browse them both on our children’s sun cream page.

Will children’s SPF50 protect against UVA and UVB?

Now, this is a common sunscreen misconception, and we are more than happy to clear up any confusion.

The SPF number only relates to skin-burning UVB rays, not UVA. For this, you need to look for the UVA symbol. This indicates that the product meets EU UVA standards.

Green People’s children’s (and adult!) sun creams are all broad-spectrum (meaning they protect against both UVA and UVB rays) and meet the EU’s UVA standards.

Shop SPF30 and SPF50 children’s sunscreen

Whether you choose to protect your child with SPF30 or SPF50, you should apply their sun protection liberally and frequently.

Organic Children Lavender Sun Cream SPF50

Our children’s SPF50 is a natural and organic sun cream is a super-gentle sun cream that can be used for children of all ages from 6 months.

Organic Children Lavender Sun Cream SPF50 tube in the sand

Easy to apply and non-drying, its soothing Lavender scent is a calming alternative to the strong artificial fragrances commonly found in kids’ sun creams.

If SPF50 gives you peace of mind that you’re giving your child the highest level of protection, then this is the best children’s SPF to choose.


Organic Children Scent Free Sun Cream SPF30  

If your child is sensitive to fragrance, struggles with sensory overload or regularly experiences prickly heat, you should choose our Scent Free Children’s Sun Cream SPF30.

A bestseller with 1000+ 5-star reviews, this natural kids’ sun cream is unscented and has a thinner formula that is ideal for prickly heat.

This gentle children’s sun cream is eczema-friendly and has been dermatologically tested to be kind to sensitive skin – great for kids who sometimes react to sun cream.

Remember, SPF does not stay on the skin all day, so regardless of which SPF you choose for you and your family, you’ll need to make sure that you apply enough and that you reapply it regularly.

Always follow sun safety rules and encourage your family to seek shade during peak sun hours, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Don’t forget the after sun!

You can help to keep your child’s skin soft and hydrated with our Organic Children Aloe Vera Lotion & After Sun.

Naturally rich in soothing Aloe Vera, this gentle organic lotion keeps young skin happy, healthy and hydrated.

Can adults use your SPF50 kids’ sun cream?

Yes, our SPF50 sun cream can be used by adults. But we do have a whole range of sunscreens that are designed for adult skin, so you might find a better fit there!

Here are some of our bestsellers for adults:

View the full sun collection.

We hope you have found this guide to SPF50 and SPF30 children's sunscreen helpful. For more help choosing the best SPF for your family, explore our SPF quiz or contact our friendly UK customer care team on 01403 740350 or via @GreenPeopleUK. 

Reviewed by:

This blog post has been reviewed by Charlotte Vøhtz, founder of Green People, who has 25+ years of experience in the natural and organic beauty industry. A recognised leader in the field of organic beauty, Charlotte helped inform the UK's first organic beauty standards and was voted the People’s Choice in the 2023 list of Who’s Who in Natural Beauty. A published author, she wrote the organic beauty bible ‘Naturally Gorgeous’. Previously, she qualified as a nurse and spent over 10 years working in pharmaceuticals.


The contents of this blog post should be treated as information only. Please consult a medical professional if you have any health-related concerns or symptoms.

If you wish to republish this content, please credit Green People as the original creator with a link to "Which SPF is best for kids? SPF50 vs SPF30.” Please do not use an affiliate link.

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