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The Cheap Sunscreen You Should Be Using on the Kids and Yourself

Photograph by Twenty20

If you're still looking for the right sunscreen for your family, don't let the presence of Anna and Elsa fool you. The 8-ounce, Pure Sun Defense Disney "Frozen" sunscreen lotion with SPF 50 may seem like it's only made for kids, but judging from a recent string of positive reviews for children and adults, if you come across a bottle, do not let it go, moms.

The hype started when Consumer Reports released their 2017 list of top sunscreens and a study that revealed what you see on a sunscreen's packaging isn't always what you'll get. Of the 58 lotions, sprays and sticks rated, 20 of them had less than half of the SPF advertised on their label.

For sunscreens that actually work as promised, the Pure Sun Defense "Frozen" one was one of the ones that topped Consumer Reports' list. The cartoon-themed lotion scored 98 percent during testing when compared to its labeled SPF (anything above 85 percent was rated excellent). Plus, it has both UVA and UVB protection and is water-resistant, PABA- and fragrance-free and hypoallergenic. Oh, did we also mention that it's only about $6 at Target or Walmart?

That's like the price of a really expensive latte, except a bottle of sunscreen can last a little longer than 10 minutes. (Just be sure to look for the Pure Sun Defense logo, as not all sunscreens graced with the sisters' or lovable snowman's presence are created equal.)

If your kids aren't into "Frozen," Pure Sun Defense's other formulas, including Captain America, Minions and "Star Wars," also scored high marks. And if for some reason, looking at cartoon characters is for some reason just too offensive for you or your kids, Consumer Products' list also includes other great options like Coppertone Water Babies SPF 50, Equate Sport Lotion SPF 50 and La Roche-Posay Anthelios SPF 60 Melt-In Sunscreen Milk (though this last one's a little on the pricier end).

Whatever you do, just don't go for the 14 worst sunscreens for kids and babies, as ranked by the Environmental Working Group.

And remember: Always test out products on a small patch of skin first and choose sunscreens based on skin types, not just age groups. Reapply every two hours and follow rules for young infants versus older children, and for the the first time in forever, you'll be one relieved mama.

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