The 20 Best Sunscreens For All Of Your Outdoor Summer Activities

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Many people only wear sunscreen when they go outdoors, but truthfully, you need to wear sunscreen every day, outdoors or indoors. The sun's UV rays damage healthy skin cells, and over time, you will see noticeable signs of sun damage such as skin cancer. Furthermore, free radicals prevent collagen production that can cause negative skin problems, including wrinkling and premature aging (via Medical News Today).

The American Academy of Dermatology Association (AAD) recommends that everyone wears sunscreen on all exposed parts of their body, including the lips, to protect themselves from the sun's harmful effects irrespective of skin tone. You want to choose a sunscreen that provides broad-spectrum protection, protecting you from UVA (causes aging) and UVB (causes burning) rays.

Wearing sunscreen is one of the best investments you can make to take care of your skin to keep it healthy and protected. Everyone over the age of 6 months needs to wear sunscreen; it's one of the best ways to protect yourself from the sun (via the Skin Cancer Foundation). There are two types of sunscreen — physical/mineral and chemical — depending on the type of active ingredient in it. Mineral sunscreen has ingredients like titanium dioxide and zinc oxide that reflect the sun's rays, and chemical sunscreen has ingredients like avobenzone and oxybenzone that absorb the sun's rays.

How we selected the sunscreens

Choosing the right sunscreen can be overwhelming because there are countless options on the market. You want to choose a sunscreen that fits your lifestyle, skin tone, skin type, and budget, and we are here to make it easier for you to choose the right one. In fact, Healthline notes that even pregnant women need to wear sunscreen, so it truly is for everyone. However, you want to avoid chemical sunscreens that have oxybenzone during this time, rather using a mineral sunscreen with zinc oxide as it's much "safer" for the mom and the baby. 

The sunscreens on our list are popular and have the best reviews, so you're in good hands. We've considered how easily they apply, their SPF numbers, and how flattering they look on real people. Depending on your skin type and tone — and whether you prefer cream, powder, or spray — we are here to help you find the best sunscreen you can wear all year round to protect you from UVA and UVB rays while still maintaining a sun-kissed glow. You may just find your perfect match on this list!

Best Overall Sunscreen

La Roche-Posay is known for making quality drugstore skincare products. One of their most popular products is the La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt-In Milk Sunscreen SPF 60, our pick for the best overall sunscreen because it's oil-free, non-irritating, fragrance-free, and water-resistant for 80 minutes. According to La Roche-Posay, it's the brand's best-selling sunscreen for the face and body. It has the Skin Cancer Foundation's stamp of approval and boasts an impressive 4.6 out of 5 stars on Amazon with over 8,000 reviews. One reviewer even said, "Probably the BEST sunscreen ever."

Purchase the La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt-In Milk Sunscreen SPF 60 on Amazon for $36.

Best Drugstore Sunscreen

If you're looking for quality sunscreen without breaking the bank, you can't go wrong with CeraVe Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen SPF 50. It's free of oils and fragrances, so it has the National Eczema Association Seal of Acceptance and is loved by the Skin Cancer Foundation. We are a fan of this budget find because it's infused with ceramides and hyaluronic acid to provide constant hydration without causing any irritation and is an excellent pick for people with sensitive skin, per CeraVe's official website. Being a mineral sunscreen, it's also suitable for pregnant individuals and nursing moms.

Purchase the CeraVe Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen SPF 50 at Walmart for $15.

Best Splurge Sunscreen

If you don't mind splurging a little on sunscreen with extra skin-loving benefits, try the Priori Adaptive Skincare Tetra fx251 Sunscreen Lotion SPF 55. This dermatologist-recommended sunscreen protects and heals your skin from the damage of free radicals. According to Priori, it also has GPF (genetic protection factor) to protect you from blue light, heat, and pollution, in addition to SPF. It comes in a universal tint that works on every skin tone.

Purchase the Priori Adaptive Skincare Tetra fx251 Sunscreen Lotion SPF 55 at Amazon for $85.50

Best Sunscreen Mist

Applying sunscreen in the morning is easy, but you can get lazy to reapply it as you might not want to touch your face or have makeup on. That's why sunscreen mists are convenient because you can spritz them on the go, and we love the Pacifica Set & C Protect SPF 45 Matte Sheer Setting Mist. This hydrating mist with SPF 45 sets your makeup and can be used as needed throughout the day without worrying about messing up your mascara. According to Pacifica, it's perfect for all skin types and even has the benefits of Vitamin C and sea minerals.

Purchase the Pacifica Set & C Protect SPF 45 Matte Sheer Setting Mist at Ulta for $16.

Best Powder Sunscreen

If you wear makeup and are out and about for hours, it can be hard to apply sunscreen all over your face to keep it protected; that's why powder sunscreen is helpful. In fact, this makes them perfect for summer. They can also help control the oil on your skin. You should try Colorscience Sunforgettable Total Protection Brush-On Sunscreen SPF 50 because it's water-resistant and non-comedogenic, so it's suitable for acne-prone and sensitive skin and super comfortable to wear, per Colorescience. It comes in four shades, so it's easy to find your perfect match.

Purchase the Sunforgettable Total Protection Brush-On Sunscreen SPF 50 at Walmart for $48.

Best Compact Sunscreen

If you prefer a compact sunscreen for touch-ups throughout the day, SkinBetter SunBetter TONE SMART SPF 68 Sunscreen Compact is ideal as it also acts as a primer and has SPF 68 to protect you from blue light and both UVA and UVB rays. Though it only comes in one shade, this sunscreen is known to blend into any skin tone, making for a smooth — and protective — finish.

Purchase the SkinBetter SunBetter TONE SMART SPF 68 Sunscreen Compact at SkinBetter for $65.

Best Sunscreen Stick

Another portable, easy around the eyes than powder, and convenient way to apply (or reapply) sunscreen is a sunscreen stick. They're great not only because you can apply them to more specific areas but also because they absorb well. You can't go wrong with Supergoop Sunnyscreen 100% Mineral Stick because it's gentle for all skin types, even those with sensitive skin, and babies can wear it, too (via Supergoop's official website). It's water-resistant and hydrating to boot.

Purchase the Supergoop Sunnyscreen 100% Mineral Stick at Supergoop for $24.

Best Foundation with Sunscreen

While you shouldn't just depend on makeup for sun protection, there is nothing wrong with a little extra help when you're outdoors. For fans of full-coverage with moisturizing benefits, It Cosmetics Bye Bye Foundation Full Coverage Moisturizer with SPF 50+ is one of the best. In addition to sun protection, It Cosmetics claims that it helps with "redness, pores, breakouts, dark spots, lines and wrinkles." Available in 12 shades, you can also use it as a concealer if you don't want the heavy feel. Plus, the skin around your eyes needs sun protection, too.

Purchase the It Cosmetics Bye Bye Foundation Full Coverage Moisturizer with SPF 50+ at Ulta for $42.

Best Tinted Sunscreen

Summer can get sweaty, and foundation might not be ideal for oily or acne-prone skin. However, if you want a little hint of color with sun protection, we guarantee you will love Tower 28 SunnyDays Broad Spectrum SPF 30 Tinted Sunscreen. According to Tower 28, this tinted sunscreen provides broad-spectrum protection and is infused with reparative prickly pear, anti-inflammatory white sage, and aloe to soothe the skin in the sun. It even has the National Eczema Association's Seal of Acceptance and comes in 14 shades, making it easier to find your perfect shade for light to medium coverage.

Purchase the Tower 28 SunnyDays Broad Spectrum SPF 30 Tinted Sunscreen at Tower 28 for $30.

Best Sunscreen for Dark Skin

Sunscreens have a reputation for looking chalky on most skin tones, and it's worse for those with darker skin tones. If you're struggling, you should try Black Girl Sunscreen, which blends in beautifully and is streak-free while keeping you safe from the sun all day. It also works as a great primer under makeup and has hydrating ingredients like shea butter and coconut oil, per Black Girl Sunscreen. One reviewer on Ulta even said, "This sunscreen goes on smoothly with no greasy feel. It actually made my face smoother as well once I removed it. I absolutely love this product."

Purchase the Black Girl Sunscreen Make It Matte Sunscreen – SPF 45 at Ulta for $18.

Best Mineral Sunscreen

If you want to avoid chemical sunscreens and don't want to deal with the white cast left by mineral sunscreens, we'd love for you to try the Australian Gold Botanical Sunscreen Mineral Lotion SPF 50. It's slightly tinted, so it'll leave zero chalkiness on your skin while evening your skin tone. People are fans of this skin-loving sunscreen with antioxidant-rich red algae, eucalyptus, and Kakadu plum, and it has over 26.5 thousand reviews on Amazon. One of the reviewers even said, "Long-lasting, no white cast, good mineral formula, no breakouts on sensitive skin." Sounds so perfect, doesn't it?

Purchase the Australian Gold Botanical Sunscreen Mineral Lotion SPF 50 at Amazon for about $14.

Best Dermatologist-Recommended Sunscreen

You know you can trust a sunscreen when tons of dermatologists love it. In fact, Miami-based board-certified dermatologist Christopher O'Connell told Allure, "My favorite sunscreen is EltaMD Clear," adding that the brightening ingredient niacinamide can "help give the skin a glow." This cruelty-free EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46 is awesome because it's a matte moisturizer with SPF protection that has hydrating sodium hyaluronate and lactic acid to unclog the pores, so no worries about breaking out when you wear this find. It's oil-free and a great choice for sensitive or acne-prone skin, all while continuing to protect all skin types from premature signs of aging.

Purchase the EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46 at Dermstore for $39.

Best Sunscreen for Sensitive Skin

It can be tricky to find the right sunscreen to be outdoors for those with sensitive skin because the last thing you need is to cause more irritation or inflammation. If you want quality protection without a hefty price tag, our vote goes to Blue Lizard Australian Sunscreen, Sensitive SPF 30+ if your skin is prone to extra sensitivity. It's also free of chemicals and fragrances that could cause irritation. Fun fact: the bottle turns blue in UV light, so you can't forget to reapply it. It's long-lasting, so it works for those who sweat a lot in the summer.

Purchase the Blue Lizard Australian Sunscreen, Sensitive SPF 30+ at Amazon for around $18.

Best Sunscreen for Acne-Prone Skin

Sunscreen can be goopy, and if you're prone to acne, you want sun protection without the extra pimples. Therefore, you want to watch out for fragrances and oils in your sunscreen. Neutrogena Ultra-Sheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen Lotion fits all the mentioned categories as it is oil-free and non-comedogenic with no fragrance. Hence, there is no chance of irritation either.

Purchase the Neutrogena Ultra-Sheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen Lotion at Amazon for around $8.

Best Sunscreen for Dry Skin

Dry skin can always benefit from extra hydration. According to Peter Thomas Roth, this water-resistant chemical sunscreen is infused with ceramides and hyaluronic acid for added moisturizing benefits and absorbs super quickly, leaving you with super hydrated and dewy-looking skin for a staggering 72 hours. One reviewer on Ulta commented, "I have very dry, sensitive, and very fair skin. But now I use this product every morning. NO breakout, no irritation, just soft, moist skin."

Purchase the Peter Thomas Roth Drench Cloud Moisturizer SPF 45 at Ulta for $55.

Best Sunscreen for Oily Skin

If you have oily skin, the last thing you need is to look extra greasy when you are outdoors basking in the sun. That's why you need the Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare All-Physical Lightweight Wrinkle Defense Sunscreen SPF 30 for oily skin because it's oil-free, lightweight, and has a non-greasy finish that blends beautifully into the skin and also works under makeup. Despite being a mineral sunscreen, it doesn't make you look ashy. Continued use can also see a reduction in fine lines and wrinkles. Eco-friendly peeps will love that it's reef-friendly and comes in recyclable packaging.

Purchase the Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare All-Physical Lightweight Wrinkle Defense Sunscreen SPF 30 at Sephora for $42.

Best K-Beauty Sunscreen

While most Americans love soaking in the sun, many Asian countries avoid it to maintain healthier skin, and their sunscreens are next level. This means that their cosmetic technologies are often more advanced than those in the U.S., making their products, including sunscreens, superior. Neogen Day-Light Protection Airy Sunscreen is among the best as it has SPF 50 and ingredients like skin-loving ingredients like avocado, aloe, hibiscus, and acai to keep your skin healthy and protected. It's one of the best sellers on Soko Gliz for a reason.

Purchase the Neogen Day-Light Protection Airy Sunscreen at Soko Gliz for $32.

Best Clean Sunscreen

Sunscreens are not all the same. While certain ingredients in chemical sunscreens aren't best for the environment or pregnant and nursing moms, some are verified safe by the Environmental Working Group (EWG). One of them is Biossance Squalane + Zinc Sheer Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30 PA +++, which would be our pick. Biossance shared this mineral sunscreen with zinc-oxide has squalane for extra hydration and water lily to soothe the skin. Its cruelty-free, vegan, and has recyclable packaging.

Purchase the Biossance Squalane + Zinc Sheer Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30 PA +++ at Sephora for $30.

Best Body Sunscreen

While our face gets all the love and sun protection, it's also essential to give the same level of TLC to the body. Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protector Lotion SPF 50+ is perfect for the body as it goes on completely invisible and is water- and- sweat-resistant for 80 minutes. According to Shiseido, its key ingredients are WetForce Technology and HeatForce Technology, which amp up the protection when exposed to water, sweat, and heat, and that's precisely what we need.

Purchase the Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protector Lotion SPF 50+ at Dermstore for $49.

Best Sweat-Resistant Sunscreen

If you're a fan of long hikes or runs outdoors, don't forget your sunscreen. That's why we have chosen Sungel SPF30 Eco Sunscreen because it's highly concentrated, so you don't need a lot, and it keeps you protected for a longer time. It absorbs quickly and is free of parabens and fragrance. Even pregnant women and babies can wear it because it's so gentle — but that doesn't mean it doesn't work.

Purchase the Skinnies Sungel SPF30 Eco Sunscreen at Amazon for about $35.