You already know how important it is to wear sunscreen every single day, and especially so during these ridiculously hot summer months. Sunscreen is your best defense against sun damage, including premature signs of aging like wrinkles, fine lines and dark spots. Most importantly, SPF is key in protecting your skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays that can cause skin cancer.
Sine sunscreen is so crucial, it’s essential to find a formula that you like and will actually use. There’s a lot of debate over what makes a good sunscreen, including the benefits of chemical versus mineral SPFs, but the truth is that the best sunscreen is one that you will actually use.
So, what’s the big difference between mineral and chemical formulas? Mineral (also known as physical) sunscreens typically contain just two active ingredients (titanium dioxide and zinc oxide), which essentially sit on top of skin and act as a physical blocker from UV rays. Chemical sunscreens, on the other hand, often are composed of several other active ingredients aside from just titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, and actually absorb the UV rays.
If you’re not sure which SPF is best for you, take a look at your skin concerns. Mineral sunscreens tend to be less irritating for those with sensitive or reactive skin, including conditions like rosacea, eczema and acne, as they’re more gentle. In my personal experience, I’ve found that if you’re blemish-prone and have generally sensitive skin (like me!), a mineral SPF is your best bet, especially for face sunscreen.
While mineral SPFs have long had a reputation for a thick, chalky and unblendable consistency, there have been major strides in formulations over the past several years, and there are now plenty of mineral sunscreens that won’t leave that dreaded white cast. Still, remember that mineral sunscreens are, for the most part, going to require a little more work to fully rub in than a chemical formula. Everyone’s skin is different, and a mineral SPF that’s a dream for one skin type might not be for another.
If you’re not sure where to start, don’t fret—we’ve done the hard work for you, and found the top mineral face sunscreens you’ll want to use every single day.
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Tatcha The Silk Sunscreen: Broad Spectrum SPF 50
Tatcha’s silky smooth SPF is a sheer, blendable, offers broad spectrum sun protection and happens to be great as a primer. It’s one of the best options for a variety of skin tones, though it’s definitely on the pricier side.
Colorescience Total Protection Face Shield Glow SPF 50
This mineral SPF 50 is another reliable, blendable option, and it also leaves behind the loveliest luminescent glow, for a highlighter-sun protection combo.
Live Tinted Hueguard
The beauty industry has a long ways to go in terms of inclusivity, especially in expanding their shade ranges for darker skin tones. Live Tinted is considered one of the best options for darker skin tones, as it has a minimal—if any—white cast.
Summer Fridays ShadeDrops Broad Spectrum SPF 30 Mineral Milk Sunscreen
Summer Fridays just debuted this mineral SPF this year, and it’s gotten rave reviews for good reason. It has a lightweight, milky texture, and also contains hydrating squalane and antioxidants.
Bliss Block Star Mineral Daily Sunscreen
Bliss’ latest mineral SPF is lightweight, hydrating and has a minimal (if any!) cast, depending on your skin tone.
Eminence Organics Lilikoi Daily Defense Moisturizer SPF 40
Eminence Organics is behind one of my all-time favorite SPFs; it’s an ultra-moisturizing mineral formula that doesn’t irritate sensitive skin and has a delightful natural fragrance that’s decidedly un-sunscreen-like. It’s a great moisturizer-SPF duo.
Clark's Botanicals Invisible Hero SPF 30 Anti-Aging Sunscreen + Hyaluronic Acid
I have not one bad thing to say about this sunscreen, which is from one of my all-time favorite brands (the Youth Serum and Eye Cream are *chef’s kiss*), and leaves zero white cast. It’s admittedly on the more expensive side, but it’s also packed with nourishing and hydrating ingredients like hyaluronic acid and niacinamide, because you know how much we love a good hybrid product over here. It has a nice dewy finish, too.
Isdin Eryfotona Actinica Daily Mineral SPF 50+ Sunscreen
Isdin’s Eryfotona Actinica SPF is easily one of the most lightweight, water-like consistencies of any mineral SPF I’ve ever tried. It’s also incredibly blendable, though it does have a bit of a scent. Not only will it protect you from the sun, but it also works to repair existing sun damage thanks to a special blend of DNA repairsomes.
Murad Correct and Protect Serum Broad Spectrum SPF 45
Use Murad’s mineral SPF serum as the last step in your skincare routine; it has a satiny, lightweight texture and works to both protect your skin and help correct discoloration and pigmentation from prior sun damage.
Evereden SPF 50 Premium Mineral Sunscreen
Evereden’s hydrating SPF 50 is another lightweight and blendable option, but does have a bit of that classic sunscreen scent. It’s one of the most conveniently packaged sunscreens for those on the go, since you can simply clip it onto your bag.
Native Face Sunscreen SPF 30
Native’s unscented mineral face sunscreen is great for those with super sensitive skin, and while it definitely takes a minute to rub in, it doesn’t leave behind a major chalky cast once you’ve blended it out.
Sun Bum Mineral SPF 30 Face Lotion
Sun Bum’s non-tinted mineral SPF is technically fragrance-free, but still has that delightful coconut-banana-esque scent that the brand is known for. This is a matte finish sunscreen that’s great for oily and sensitive skin, and also works well as a primer.
Hydration Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen Lotion SPF 30
This SPF 30 is a solid, ultra-hydrating choice for anyone with dry and sensitive skin.
Soleil Toujours Mineral Ally Daily Face Defense SPF 50
This lightweight SPF is just plain luxurious; it blends like an absolute dream and is so nourishing. We also love the brand’s sunscreen body mist and shimmery oil, for an effortless, bronzed glow.
EltaMD UV Glow Broad-Spectrum SPF 36
For a lightweight tinted mineral sunscreen, you can’t do much better than EltaMD’s glowy SPF 36, which is one of my favorite formulas when I want a bit of coverage and sun protection all in one. It has a dewy, bronzy finish, so it’s best if you’re not going for a matte complexion.
Supergoop Mineral Sheerscreen SPF 30
Supergoop’s Sheerscreen is always a reliable choice; my only complaint is how fast I go throw the rather small bottle.
I absolutely love a good multitasking product, and Saie’s Sunvisor is a total powerhouse—it’s a serum, moisturizer, SPF and oil all in one. It blends beautifully and has the perfect glazed donut finish.
Project Reef Mineral Sunscreen SPF 50
Project Reef’s SPF 50 is packed with aloe vera, coconut, sea buckthorn oil and antioxidants including green tea, pomegranate and raspberry extract, which protect, hydrate and even out skin tone. Even better, for every bottle purchased, the brand removes a pound of plastic from the oceans.
Obagi Sun Shield Mineral Broad Spectrum SPF 50
Even the most reactive and sensitive skin types can rely on this mineral SPF, as it’s specially made for post-procedure skin.
Grown Alchemist Natural Hydrating Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 30
This Australian brand’s natural sunscreen truly melts into your skin; it’s hydrating, moisturizing, protective and even has firming properties.
MDSolarSciences Mineral Crème SPF 50
If you have oilier skin or simply prefer a matte finish, try this creamy SPF 50. It does contain vitamin C, so if you’re sensitive to the antioxidant, it might not be the best choice for you.