You already know how important it is to apply (and reapply) sunscreen all over your face and body, especially during these stifling summer months. Even the most meticulous of SPF enthusiasts, however, often forget to protect their scalp and hairline, only to come home after a day in the sun to find a painful burn developing right on the top of the head. If you’ve ever burnt your scalp and dealt with a stinging and peeling hairline for days (if not weeks), then you know how key is it to protect your head from the harsh UV rays. After all, not only is a tender, burnt scalp extremely uncomfortable, but it puts you at risk for sun damage, and once it starts peeling, it’s also rather unsightly.
A hat is a great way to protect your head and hair the sun, but sunscreen is also an important factor. The issue is that people rarely think to put sunscreen on their part and hairline, largely because it feels like a nuisance and there aren’t near as many SPF products specifically geared towards the scalp. You can always just slather your go-to SPF onto your part (or wherever on your head needs protection), but we get that applying lotion to your hair isn’t ideal, nor is spraying a thick sunscreen onto your mane.
Luckily, there are several sunscreens that are great options for hair and scalp SPF, including a few that are intended exclusively for that area. Other great scalp SPF alternatives include powder sunscreens and certain stick sunscreens, in addition to ultra-fine mists. If you feel like your hair is starting to get weighed down from all the product (sunscreen included) you’ve had to use lately, a quick pro tip—get a high-quality clarifying shampoo to use every so often for a deep cleanse.
Below, see the best scalp sunscreens to help protect yourself from UV rays all year long—and don’t forget about that hat.
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Sun Bum Scalp & Hair Mist SPF 30
Sun Bum’s sheer SPF 30 spray is specifically made to protect your scalp and hair from harsh sun rays; it’s lightweight but also nourishes your hair, and doesn’t leave a greasy film.
EltaMD UV Stick Broad-Spectrum SPF 50+
A stick sunscreen is a great option to use on your scalp and hairline; just apply it directly to the exposed part of your head. EltaMD’s mineral SPF 50 stick is good for sensitive skin, too, and is easy to keep with you for seamless reapplication.
Colorescience Sunforgettable Total Protection Brush-On Shield SPF 50
A brush-on powder SPF is incredibly easy to apply just about anywhere, and we love that you can use this on your face and scalp.
Soleil Toujours Clean Conscious Set + Protect Micro Mist Sunscreen SPF 30
This mist is actually technically a setting spray with SPF, which makes it great for your scalp and hairline, too, since it’s so light.
Supergoop Poof 100% Mineral Part Powder SPF 35
Supergoop’s Poof mineral part powder is another formula that’s specifically made for that hard-to-reach scalp area. Just spritz it on the same way you would dry shampoo.
Coola Scalp & Hair Mist Organic Sunscreen SPF 30
You’ll actually enjoy spraying on this organic and water-resistant scalp and hair sunscreen; it has the loveliest ocean-reminiscent scent.
SkinBetter Sunbetter Sheer SPF 56 Sunscreen Stick
This SPF 56 stick is ultra-sheer, so it won’t leave a noticeable or sticky white residue in your hairline.
Isdin Isdinceutics Mineral Brush
I’m a big fan of Isdin’s mineral SPF for my face, but their mineral brush formula is a great choice to protect your hairline and scalp.
Summer Camp Mineral BFF Face Face and Lip Sunstick SPF 50
This multitasking mineral sun stick is already great for face and lip protection, but you can also use it for your part and scalp.
Ulta Mineral Hair & Scalp Power SPF 45
If you’re looking for a powder formula, try Ulta’s SPF 45, which is made for your hair and scalp. You’ll likely want to use this one in the morning before you head out, as you will need to brush it out so you don’t have any residue.
Jane Iredale Powder-Me SPF 30 Dry Sunscreen
This physical powder SPF 30 comes in a few different shades, and we love that it’s refillable, too.