The Eight Best Sunscreens For Sensitive Skin

Beauty


This is your friendly but firm reminder that you should be applying sunscreen daily. Rain or shine, black or white, it might just be the most important step in your beauty routine. It’s even more important for those with sensitive skin who can burn up before you can even say, “It’s so nice out!”

So what should you look for in a sunscreen? “Physical sunscreens containing zinc oxide and titanium dioxide are best for sensitive skin because they don’t irritate as easily as chemical sunscreens do,” explains dermatologist Rachel Nazarian of Schweiger Dermatology Group in New York City. “Also look for ingredients that are naturally calming and anti-inflammatory—think niacinamide, hyaluronic acid, and green tea extract—which can soothe easily inflamed skin.” Or don’t, because we’ve already done the work for you.

1

Avene Mineral Light Hydrating Sunscreen Lotion

This sunscreen’s minerals (zinc oxide and titanium dioxide) work by deflecting the sun’s UV rays. The water-resistant formula delivers eight hours of coverage and because it’s a silky fluid that absorbs almost instantly, it can be layered seamlessly under makeup.

Avene Mineral Light Hydrating Sunscreen Lotion, $36; dermstore.com

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2

La Roche-Posay Ultra Light Sunscreen

Mineral blockers zinc and titanium dioxide do most of the heavy-lifting, but a non-irritating blend of chemical screens help amp up the protective factor in this non-comedogenic, fragrance free liquid.

La Roche-Posay Ultra Light Sunscreen, $33.50; dermstore.com

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3

Cotz Sensitive Sunscreen

An impressive 20 percent blast of zinc oxide that somehow, miraculously, sits sheerly atop the skin. Glycerin and vitamin E make sure it feels quenching, not dry or gritty.

Cotz Sensitive Sunscreen, $17.59; target.com

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4

Neutrogena Sensitive Skin Sunscreen

The mineral-based sunscreen is completely naturally sourced to provide UVA/UVB protection. While some non-chemical blockers can be greasy or thick, Neutrogena’s broad spectrum protection is particularly matte and sheer.

Neutrogena Sensitive Skin Sunscreen, $7.99; target.com

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5

Supergoop Everyday Sunscreen Broad Spectrum

A sunscreen that’s also a serum and a perfume. Apart from the UVA, UVB, and IRA ray protection, the product boasts unique oat-beta-glucan that delivers lasting moisture and helps fight the sun’s effects after prolonged exposure. The added lemon, orange, and basil team up for a zippy citrus scent. It’s important to note this product is not chemical free, but still provides gentle, non-irritating protection.

Supergoop Everyday Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 50, $19; sephora.com

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6

Shisedio Ultimate Sun Protection for Sensitive Skin & Children

If it’s good enough for children (they are our future) this should be just fine for your sensitive skin. For starters, it’s free of chemical agents, fragrance, and alcohol. And the sun protection factor comes from the mineral-based formula, but it also contains Shiseido’s WetForce technology which actually makes the sunscreen more powerful for 15 minutes after exposure to water or sweat.

Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protection Lotion, $42; sephora.com

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7

​Vanicream Sunscreen Broad Spectrum

This lightweight formula absorbs into the skin quickly, but won’t clog your pores or leave any of that embarrassing chalky residue. Zinc oxide sits on the skin to create a barrier that reflects and absorbs UVA and UVB rays. The product also uses omega fatty acids and vegetable squalane to combat redness and irritation.

Vanicream Sunscreen Broad Spectrum, $14.37; amazon.com

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8

​Suntegrity Natural Mineral Sunscreen

The secret ingredient in this sunscreen? Green tea. The zingy leaves work to protect against free-radical damage as zinc oxide repels and absorbs rays. The formula also includes soothing aloe vera and cucumber.

Suntegrity Natural Mineral Sunscreen, $24; amazon.com

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9

Blue Lizard Sunscreen for Sensitive Skin

The 10 percent zinc oxide base shields your skin for the UV rays and works to absorb the heat. Plus, the patented BPA-free plastic cap is UV photo-sensitive so it changes color when harmful rays are present—a handy visual reminder to lather up.

Blue Lizard Sunscreen for Sensitive Skin, $14.85; amazon.com

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