Can you take sunscreen on a plane? - The family vacation guide (2023)

Written byJames Brockbankan// Last updated on

Thinking of flying into the sunset soon? Whether your destination is a beach, city, desert, campground, or hiking trail, most summer destinations have one thing in common. No matter where you go, when there is sun, you need sunscreen.

But it's easy to get confused when trying to figure out how to package this sunscreen.

TSA policies change from time to time (and some just seem to change) and there is also a lot of misleading information out there. This can add unnecessary stress to planning a fun vacation.

But no worry!

We've done all the research for you and put together a handy guide to help you decide whether to pack sunscreen in your checked or carry-on baggage. We've also included helpful information on what size and types of sunscreen are allowed on flights, and different ways to store your sunscreen in your luggage.

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We understand how stressful it is preparing for the unknown when information seems vague and unreliable. Knowing what to expect in advance and being prepared, with knowledge of TSA rules and regulations, can really help reduce the stress that often accompanies traveling on airplanes. It's good to know what to expect when you come across a TSA checkpoint.

Table of Contents:

  • Yes you can
  • No, sunscreen bottles cannot be full size
  • You have options!
    • roll-ons and sunscreen sticks
  • Are sunscreen sprays allowed on planes?
  • Reusable Bottles
  • Finally
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Yes you can

The important things first.

And;you canBring sunscreen on a plane. TSA guidelines state that the administration allows storing sunscreen in your carry-on baggage. Bottles of sunscreen must be equal to or smaller than 3.4 ounces (100 ml).

If you're also trying to be more economical and bring your own full-size bottles for your trip, you can always pack them in your checked baggage.

Can you take sunscreen on a plane? - The family vacation guide (1)

No, sunscreen bottles cannot be full size

As we alluded to above, sunscreen sizing regulations appear to have changed over the past year, with the TSA erroneously posting information on its website that passengers can now carry full-size sunscreen on flights. But unfortunately! It was a mistake on the part of the TSA. The inclusion of full-size sunscreen in the list of medically necessary liquids was a sad mistake.

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The administration announced the correction on its website, adding that travelers should comply3-1-1 rulewhen packing hand luggage. That means those 3.4-ounce (or smaller) bottles must be packed together in a single quart-sized resealable bag. Keep in mind that this is only one resealable bag per traveler, but you are allowed to fit as many bottles in one bag as possible.

In addition, the TSA has published detailed guidelines and advice for prospective passengers on these rules.TSAurges passengers planning to travel with larger quantities of sunscreen or other liquids or aerosols to place them in their checked baggage for use at the desired destination.

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If you're wondering why the TSA implemented the 3-1-1 rule, it's about passenger safety on all flights. It turns out thatstudiesConducted in the early 2000s, suggested that a certain amount of liquid is required to create an effective explosion. So it makes sense to limit bottled liquids to make flying safer for all travelers.

Can you take sunscreen on a plane? - The family vacation guide (2)

You have options!

When it comes to miniature bottles of lotions, potions, and other liquids, you have plenty to choose from. Sunscreens are no exception; They come in cute little bottles and even in roll-on form. Here's a list of sunscreen brands and protection levels that we've found that come in the required size of 3.4 ounces (100 ml) or smaller:

  • Banana Boat Sports Extra, SPF 30, three fl oz
  • Neutrogena Ultra-Sheer Dry-Touch, 45 SPF, drei fl oz
  • Coppertone Sport 4-in-1, 50 SPF, Three fl oz
  • COOLA Organic Sunscreen, 30 SPF, Three Fluid Ounces
  • Sun Bum Original Sunscreen, 70 SPF, Three fl oz
  • Hawaiian Tropic Everyday Active, SPF 15, 1,65 fl oz
  • Reef Repair Sonnencreme, 50 SPF, 1,7 fl oz
  • Banana Boat Ultra Defense 100 SPF, drei fl oz
  • Love Sun Body Glow Natural (Tinted Sunscreen) 30 SPF, Three fl oz
  • La Roche Posay Anthelios Melt-In Milk Face & Body Sunscreen 100 SPF, drei fl oz
  • Aveeno Protect and Hydrate Sunscreen, 70 SPF, Three Ounces
  • Think Baby Body & Face Sunscreen, 70 SPF, Three Ounces

roll-ons and sunscreen sticks

We also wanted to include a section on roll-on and stick sunscreen because we love the idea of ​​having something inevitable in our carry-ons and we think you could too! Many of these sticks can also be used on wet or dry skin, which makes them all the more practical for families traveling with children, especially as most of them also claim to be waterproof.

As an added benefit, many types of sunscreen in stick and roll-on form are also kid-friendly in the sense that they are tear-free, hypoallergenic, and safe for marine and reef life. Here are some sticks and roll-ons that come in travel sizes (although they don't have to follow the same rules and regulations as liquids; they're in the same category asparty Deodorants):

  • Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Face and Body Stick Broad Spectrum SPF 70, 1,5 oz
  • Banana Boat Kids Stick, Tear Resistant, Waterproof, SPF 70, 0.5 oz
  • TropicSport Reef Friendly Mineral Sunscreen SPF 70, 0,49 oz
  • CeraVe Sonnencreme, LSF 50, 0,47 oz
  • Coppertone Sport Sunscreen Stick, SPF 40, 1.5 oz
  • Cetaphil Sunscreen Stick, SPF 50, 0.5 oz
  • Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen Stick, LSF 50, 0,5 oz
  • Sun Bum Original Face Stick Sunscreen, SPF 30, 0.5 oz
  • Neutrogena Beach Defense Stick, LSF 50, 0,5 oz
  • Aveeno Positively Mineral, LSF 50, 0,5 oz
  • Babyganics Rollerball Sunscreen, 50 SPF, Three Ounces
  • Sun Bum Original Roll-On Sunscreen 50 SPF, Three Ounces
  • Project Sunscreen Roll-On Sunscreen for All, 50 SPF, Three Ounces
  • Supergoop! GlowStick, 70 SPF, 0,5 oz
Can you take sunscreen on a plane? - The family vacation guide (3)

Are sunscreen sprays allowed on planes?

Some people prefer their sunscreen to come in a spray or aerosol form. Are they allowed on flights? Yes. The TSA allows spray sunscreen in carry-on baggage on planes as it is considered a toiletry item.

Sunscreen spray bottles must conform to the 3-1-1 (i.e., no larger than 3.4 ounce or 100 mL bottles packaged in a resealable clear bag). As with other liquids, larger bottles of sunscreen spray or aerosol bottles must be packedchecked baggage.

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Reusable Bottles

There are good reasons to choose to transfer your larger bottles of skin care products or other toiletries into reusable plastic bottles. You may be trying to do your bit for the environment by using fewer disposable plastic items, generally transporting food and beverages in reusable containers, and want to apply the same logic to bathroom products.

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Or you may have noticed that smaller bottles of toiletries tend to have poorer value per fluid ounce than larger ones. Buying in bulk will save you money in the long run, especially with longer-lasting products like beauty products and other toiletries, as they usually take a lot longer to expire.

Whatever your reasoning, it's certainly not a bad idea to usereusable bottleswhen choosing a liquid or gel sunscreen, especially with a little research beforehand to make sure they're of good quality and have the right capacity. TSA rules allow liquids and gels to be carried in carry-on baggage without the original manufacturer label, so don't worry about that.

Many of the container brands claim to be TSA approved, although this seems a bit difficult to verify. It's also worth noting that it's a good idea to shop around and read reviews to find the bottles or packs that don't leak. Even if your liquids are packed in plastic bags, it's probably still nicer not to spill anything in your carry-on!

Can you take sunscreen on a plane? - The family vacation guide (4)


Wherever you're heading on vacation this summer, you'll want to protect yourself and your family from the sun and all its ravages: painful sunburns, unsightly peeling, premature aging, skin cancer and sunspots. It's good to know that you don't have to pack your sunscreen in your checked baggage, you can bring it with you on the plane.

Now you know that you can always have some sunscreen on hand, even on a plane. You can plan and relax as you approach your travel date. You can also reapply before disembarking. Just reach into your carry-on and grab that little bottle of sunscreen to get ready for the fun in the sun that awaits.

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So enjoy your travels this summer knowing that your sunscreen is easily accessible in your carry-on. Hopefully this article has helped you get one step closer to a hassle-free trip. Or, if that's not possible, a stress-free trip!



Can you take sunscreen on a plane? ›

Travelers still need to ensure liquids, gels and aerosols in carry-on bags meet the 3-1-1 requirements and are no larger than 3.4 ounces. TSA advises passengers who need larger quantities of sunscreen, or other liquids, gels and aerosols, to add them to checked baggage for use at their destination.

Can you take sunscreen in your cabin bag? ›

All liquid toiletry and cosmetic items such as shampoo, sun cream, perfumes and aftershaves in containers over 100 ml must be packed in hold baggage. Where oversize liquids are found inside cabin baggage, passengers will always have to abandon them at security, or make use of a 'mail and fly' service if available.

Why can't you bring sunscreen on a plane? ›

Are those allowed on flights? Yes. The TSA does allow sunscreen in spray form on planes in carry-on luggage since it is considered a toiletry item. Spray bottles of sunscreen must adhere to the 3-1-1 (i.e., no more than 3.4 ounces or 100 ml bottles, packed in one resealable, clear bag).

What is the limit for sunscreen on a plane? ›

The restriction on liquids by volume to no more than 100ml containers, is purely for cabin luggage. If putting any liquid/cream in your checked luggage, it's a good idea to reduce the contents slightly to allow for expansion;-) Never had any problem with sun cream expanding in its original container.

Can you bring a full bottle of sunscreen on a carry-on? ›

Be prepared for screening. Please ensure that all liquids, gels and aerosols in your carry-on baggage are in containers of 100ml or less and placed in a clear, 1L resealable bag.

How do you travel with sunscreen? ›

The FAA limits the total amount of restricted medicinal and toiletry articles, including aerosols, in checked baggage. The total aggregate quantity per person cannot exceed 2 kg (70 ounces) or 2 L (68 fluid ounces). The capacity of each container must not exceed 0.5 kg (18 ounces) or 500 ml (17 fluid ounces).

Can I take deodorant on a plane carry-on? ›

Stick deodorant is fine in any size. Well, almost any size… Powders and crystals are good to go as well. Spray, Gel, Liquid, Cream, Pastes, and Roll-On deodorants need to be in containers no larger than 3.4 ounces and placed in a clear quart-sized baggie.

Can sunscreen go in a clear container? ›

Sunscreens, typically, retain their effectiveness for up to three years. They are actually tested in their original containers for three months periodically. Because of the leaching effect of their plastic containers, over time, it is recommended that all sunscreen containers be opaque.

Can I bring a jar of moisturizer on a plane? ›

Yes, it is. All lotions must be in containers sized 3.4 oz or less. The same goes for toothpaste, shampoo, shaving cream, etc.

Does sunscreen go in liquids bag? ›

When traveling with sunscreen and SPF products in a carry-on. Passengers have to follow the TSA 311 rule which is: “Each passenger may carry liquids, gels and aerosols in travel-size containers that are 3.4 ounces or 100 milliliters. Each passenger is limited to one quart-size bag of liquids, gels and aerosols.”

What Cannot go in a carry-on bag? ›

What items are prohibited in carry-ons?
  • Liquids, gels, or pastes in bottles larger than 3.4 ounces (100 ml)
  • Guns and ammunition (including BB guns and cap guns)
  • Stun guns and tasers.
  • Sharp objects (knives, axes, razor blades)
  • Self-defense items (such as pepper spray, brass knuckle, billy clubs)
1 Feb 2022

What is not allowed in a carry-on bag? ›

Liquid or gel food items larger than 3.4 oz are not allowed in carry-on bags and should be placed in your checked bags if possible. TSA officers may instruct travelers to separate items from carry-on bags such as foods, powders, and any materials that can clutter bags and obstruct clear images on the X-ray machine.

What can you not take on a plane 2022? ›

Restricted Items NOT Allowed on a Plane in Your Carry-On
  • Sharp objects. ...
  • Sporting goods and athletic equipment. ...
  • Self defense items. ...
  • Gel-type candles. ...
  • Large quantities of alcohol (more than 3.4 ounces) ...
  • Guns and ammunition.
12 Sept 2022


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