Physical sunscreens: Burt’s Bees vs Badger


Burt’s Bees is a brand of affordable natural personal care products that I loved until last year when the local distributor shared with me some bits of information about the line.  The information, along with news that the company was acquired by the bleach producing company Clorox,  created some unease for me and sort of killed my interest in their products.  I still use some of their lip balms and body lotion but I stopped buying anything new from them.   

But today, I gave them a look-over again, after learning that they’ve introduced the new Burt’s Bees Chemical-Free Sunscreen SPF 30, described as a 100% natural, non-whitening formula that provides broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection using titanium dioxide.  

I was curious as to how the new Burt’s Bees Chemical-Free Sunscreen SPF30 measures up against Badger SPF30 Sunblock, currently rated the safest and most effective sunscreen by the Environmental Working Group since I view both of the brands in the same market positioning.

Zinc Oxide Vs Titanium Oxide
Without testing the new Burt’s Bees sunscreen, I can only compare based on their active ingredients and it looks like Badger SPF30 Sunblock provides better broad spectrum UVA and UVB sunscreen because the sunscreen contains 20.5% zinc oxide while Burt’s Bees Chemical-Free Sunscreen SPF30 contains 8.58% titanium dioxide. 

While both are physical sunscreens (also referred to as mineral sunscreens) which means they use titanium dixoide and or zinc oxide as active ingredients to form a film on top of the skin that reflects or scatters UV light and are effective immediately upon application, the mineral zinc oxide is a more superior sunscreen ingredient compared to titanium dioxide to provide the best broad spectrum UVA and UVB sunscreen (source).   And by looking at the concentration, Badger SPF30 Sunscreen is definitely more protective against long-wave UVA.  Just refer to the following rating compiled by Environmental Protection Agency.


However, even though zinc oxide is less white compared to titanium dioxide at a given concentration, Badger SPF30 Sunblock does not do better in that regards because of the high concentration with 20.5% zinc oxide.  I have also tested the product and it left an unsightly white cast upon application.     

Well, I’m currently use the Mexoryl-based sunscreens but I really prefer physical sunscreens over chemical sunscreens because much research have revealed the latter to be free radical generators containing gender-bending estrogenic chemicals.  But would I buy the new Burt’s Bees SPF30 Sunscreen just because it’s chemical-free? 

I think the answer is obvious.

So what would you buy since both products cost about the same?


  1. Tracy says:

    can i get burt’s bees products in singapore?

  2. Happyfeet says:

    You can see a variety of Burt Bee’s pdts at Marina Square level 1 Honey World. They have a selection of Burt Bee’s. I don’t buy the Burt Bee’s pdts but I get my supply of honey there. As in other places, maybe viva woman can supply more info?

  3. sesame says:

    Hi Ladies,

    I always get mine from at Dargon Dors Cosmetics #03-1126, 32 New Market Road (People’s Park Complex). Another resource is

  4. Jasmine says:

    The prices at Dragon Dors Cosmetics are overpriced. Also I dont’t think they are very credible cos some of the aunties there are quite rude.

    Jasmine: Aunties? I don’t see any. I’ve always dealt with the mum and son directly. They’re fine people! As for the prices, yes, they maybe expensive based on the price tags, but I always get 20% off cos I’m a member so it’s actually reasonable to me.

  5. Thumbelinared says:

    Hey Jasmine, I shop at Dargon Dors Cosmetics as well. The mum and son team are nice and friendly and for regulars they extend 20% off. Am happy with the Nature SO Tea elements Hydrating One Step Cleanser. Hopefully, can find a cheaper source in Singapore. Glad I found your website and realised Jason’s Sunblock is cheaper at

    Thumberlinared: Hey, I also reflected to Dargon Dors that some of their items are cheaper at Whoopeekiddies and the son actually told me they supply to the online store. But I have only bought once at Whoopeekiddies and was a little annoyed when the items arrived but I have to say they rectified the problem very quickly upon my feedback.

  6. Rachel says:

    I think I would definitely still go with Badger sunscreen.

    Rachel: It’s great in terms of ingredients. But it’s too greasy for my liking though.

  7. Kay says:

    I’ve been using Badger for a few weeks now and I’m not really liking how thick it is. Even if I use a small amount, it never really blends in and I look shiny. Does anyone have any tips on how to stop that? I live in the state that produces Burt’s Bees products and it’s available at almost every drug store. I think I’ll look it into it.

    Kay: I find the ingredients in Badger’s are too rich. That’s why the shine. This is why I don’t use it even though it’s highly rated.

  8. Cecilia says:

    To use badger, you would have to squeeze a little from the tube into your palm, dub/rub until the consistency nice and runny. Then tap/dab it into skin.

    Badger is good for dry skins, definately not oily ones like mine.

    Cecilia: Yes, agree. It’s good for dry skin. Doesn’t work well for mine either.

  9. Lauren says:

    I use (and love) tons of Burt’s Bees products, but I was disappointed with this sunscreen, in fact, I’m still suffering from the sunburn it did NOT protect me from getting. I am very fair-skinned, and I’ve always burned easily, so I am VERY diligent about sunscreens. I was at the beach the other day for only two and a half hours, and I applied Burt’s Bees sunscreen multiple times. Each time, my sweat washed it off almost immediately. Reapplying it many times did not seem to work; I got an AWFUL sunburn that has lasted for several days now. It may work well if you can get it to stay on your skin, but I need something that I can sweat it without it all washing off.

  10. sesame says:

    Oh that’s a shame! You need something that is water resistant because of the perspiration.

  11. Amy says:

    Think I wont use either one of this 2 brands cos I do not like greasy sunscreen or whitish-looking after application.That’s why though I used Avene skin care but I do not use their sunscreen as it is so creamy and hard to apply too. Currently I’m using Sunplay brand sunscreen. Sesame , any opinion about this Sunplay range of sunscreen ?

  12. sesame says:

    I haven’t looked at the ingredients but I’ve read some comments and they seem good. If it has zinc oxide or titanium dioxide, then it should be quite okay.

  13. Amy says:

    thanks for the info. Been using SUNPLAY for some times now, it suit my sensitive skin. Until now, I yet to find other sunscreen that suit my skin.

  14. sesame says:

    I think there are various versions of Sunplay. If it works for you, then you should keep to it. If I’m not mistaken, Sunplay is a Japanese brand right? So if it has that +++, it should provide sufficient coverage.

  15. Katie says:

    I use badger and blend it with burts bee’s tinted moisterizer (which I think is no longer available) in the deep shade. I blend the two together to get my skin color. Looks nice and not white

  16. nora says:

    I’m using Sunplay again after trying Netrogena. Netrogena way too greasy for me. Need to blot my face a few times for a day.

    I used to use Sunkiller sunscreen, I think no more in Singapore. It was as good as Sunplay. I think my skin suits using Japanese sunscreen better.

  17. sesame says:

    Most of the Japanese sunscreens have alcohol and that’s why you find the texture less greasy.

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