Discover all the information you need to keep your skin safe from the sun’s rays this summer.
Every year, dermatologists stress the value of sunscreen to protect us from the sun’s harsh rays, but it’s important to know what you’re buying, so you can make the best choice for you and your family.
We’ve broken it down to what you need to know and where to buy our top picks for sunscreen.
Which sunscreen is best?
The best sunscreen will depend on your individual needs. There is no one best product for everyone. Instead, consider what you want from a sunscreen and use that criteria to help you choose which product will suit you best. Below are our suggestions for the best sunscreens for different needs.
Best everyday sunscreen
Supergoop! Everyday Sunscreen
Best sunscreen for your face
EGO SunSense Daily Face Invisible Tint
Best sunscreen for children and babies
Neutrogena Sheer Zinc Baby Sunscreen Lotion SPF50
Best sunscreen for your pets
Dr. Zoo’s Natural Zinc-Free Sun Cream
Best vegan-friendly sunscreen
Goddess Garden Organics Vegan and Biodegradable Sport SPF 30 Natural Sunscreen
Best sun protection for your hair
Aveda Sun Care Protective Hair Veil
Best SPF50+ sunscreen
Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch, SPF 85+
How safe is sunscreen?
Not protecting your skin can lead to serious damage or even skin cancer, so ultimately (with the exception of allergies) the risk of not using an approved sunscreen is far worse than any problems that may arise from the products themselves. Having said that, it’s important to know what to look for on the bottle to make sure your sunscreen is appropriate for you.
As sunscreen is designed to cover our bodies very extensively, we need to ensure that there’s no risk of ingesting or absorbing harmful chemicals.
Are the ingredients in sunscreen safe or toxic?
Most of the concerns about sunscreen stem from confusion over its chemical makeup and whether there are substances within the products that could actually be harmful to the skin over the long run.
The two main types of sunscreen have different active ingredients. One type contains organic chemical filters and the other contains inorganic metal filters. The latter is considered better for UV protection and overall coverage due to the presence of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide nanoparticles that scatter UV rays and prevent them from being absorbed into the skin. Chemical filters are less popular as they can occasionally cause allergies and some people believe them to be harmful to your hormones; however, they are still regarded as effective UV-radiation blockers.
Unless you suffer from skin sensitivity or allergies, you shouldn’t experience any issues with sunscreen. If you’re worried, then just be mindful of the ingredients before you purchase any and ensure you use your product correctly for maximum protection.
What is sunscreen?
Sunscreen is one of the best methods of protecting your skin from the sun. Depending on the type and brand, sunscreens can either absorb or reflect UV rays from the sun, keeping your skin cells safe from harm. It is sold as a lotion, a gel, a stick, a cream or a spray and can even be mixed in with some makeup formulas so that you can look fantastic AND protect yourself.
There are two different types of sunscreen: regular and broad spectrum. Broad spectrum sunscreens protect from both UVA and UVB rays. Both types of rays are responsible for severe skin damage, ageing and skin cancers, but the main differences between the rays lie in the frequency and aesthetic effect. UVA rays occur almost all the time and tend to cause tanning, while UVB rays are dependent on location and time and are responsible for burning or reddening.
How do you understand what’s on the sunscreen label?
There are a lot of confusing terms on the back of most sunscreen bottles, but it doesn’t all have to seem like a completely different language. Here are the most commonly used terms, and what they really mean:
How does sunscreen work with makeup and other beauty products?
If you’re the kind of person who rocks a full face of makeup every day, it’s important that you keep your blank canvas safe underneath. But that doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your routine in order to keep sun safe. A number of brands offer face products with SPF protection, including tinted moisturizers, BB creams and even setting sprays.
If you aren’t sold on swapping out any of your regular products for those with SPF, just pop on your sunscreen before your primer and you’re good to go. When it comes to reapplying, a setting spray or mist with SPF is your safest bet and won’t cause any issues with your look.
One of the most frustrating deterrents that come with SPF is flashback. This occurs when the SPF within the product reflects the light from flash photography, giving off a chalky, ghostly look. The best way to avoid this is to have a separate foundation for day and night use. During the day, you won’t have to worry about flash photography, but at night you can use an SPF moisturizer underneath a non-SPF foundation and powder.
Where to buy sunscreen
There’s a variety of everything available from this online giant.
But we think you’ll be pleasantly surprised to find your favorite sunscreen brands and more here.
- Free shipping as long as you spend $25 or more.
- Free two day shipping for Prime members.
- Secure and trusted.
We all know how incredible the makeup is at Sephora, but the skincare is pretty impressive too.
If you’re after something that will really treat your skin as well as protect it, Sephora carries a lot of brands that will give you that luxe feeling. You’ll find brands like Algenist, Alpha-H, ARCONA, Burberry Beauty, Caudalie, Dr. Jart+, Estée Lauder, For Beloved One, IT Cosmetics, Lancôme, Mirenesse, Moonshot, Murad, SK-II, tarte and more at Sephora.
- Designer brands.
- Free 2 day shipping all year with a $10 membership.
- Flexible returns.
It’s all about the choices.
With easily the widest variety of brands that have SPF products, StrawberryNET is absolutely packed with options. You can find Chantecaille, Clarins, Clinique, Colorescience, CosMedix, Dermablend, EltaMD, Guinot, Kiehl’s, La Roche-Posay, Shiseido and many, many more at StrawberryNET.
- Low prices.
- Huge selection.
Pick up some SPF on your next shopping trip or on the easy to shop Walmart website.
Walmart carries sunscreen year round. Check out the selection near the pharmacy section of your local store or shop online.
- Easy, no fuss returns.
- Low prices.
- Trusted retailer.