4 Facial Sunscreens Worth Smiling About

Sunny, cloudy, or hazy, every day in the outdoors needs sunscreen. Fortunately, keeping the sun’s rays off your face is as easy as putting on face sunscreen and wearing a hat. As the levels of ultraviolet rays hitting the earth continue to rise, applying facial sunscreen should be in your daily routine. Back in 2004 when the EPA decided the sun’s rays were becoming extreme, they adjusted the high on the scale and increased it from 10 to 11. Your face is beautiful – the first thing people see and the last thing they remember. Keep it safe from the long UVA and shorter UVB rays with a high-quality face sunscreen.

Luxury Pick

This product isn't thick and goopy. It's also vegan and fragrance-free.

When applying sunscreen on your face, why not add a little rejuvenation? This SPF 46 sunscreen also contains hyaluronic acid to reduce the look of fine lines. With both physical protection – minerals including zinc oxide – and chemical protection, this broad spectrum of facial sunscreens provides both UVA and UVB protection. In case you weren’t aware, there are UVC rays, too, and they are mostly absorbed by the ozone layer. Safe for sensitive skin, this 1.7-ounce pump facial sunscreen is lightweight and won’t clog pores or aggravate acne. Vegan, oil-free, and fragrance-free, this sunscreen will protect you on sunny and cloudy days, since 80 percent of the sun’s harmful rays make it through those puffy white clouds.


  • Active ingredients: zinc oxide, octinoxate.
  • For skin types: sensitive, acne-prone, rosacea.

Buy: EltaMD UV Clear SPF 46 Face Sunscreen

Family Choice

Made with homosalate and meradimate that blocks the sun’s rays and octinoxate that absorbs UVB rays, this powerful potion will have your bunch beach and boat ready.

Face it, every day in sunny weather your face needs protection, not just May 27th, which is National Sunscreen Day. If looking for a product for the whole family, this SPF 30 face sunscreen ticks all the boxes. In addition to the screening elements, it’s got the fancy face lotion ingredients hyaluronic acid and niacinamide (Vitamin B3), and ceramides (natural skin lipids) to keep your skin hydrated and happy. This three-ounce face sunscreen is both fragrance-free and oil-free, so applying it to all those cute smiling faces won’t be a challenge.


  • Lightweight formula with three essential ceramides (1, 3, 6-II).
  • Oil-free, Fragrance-free, paraben-free.
  • Non-comedogenic and ideal for normal to oily skin.
  • 3-year use.

Buy: CeraVe AM Facial Moisturizing Lotion

Better Than Oranges

From the land down under comes this nourishing product with fruits, flowers, and algae to give your skin a dewy glow.

Crafted to be good for both your skin and the environment, this vegan face sunscreen is free of chemicals, oil, dye, alcohol, and parabens, and is hypoallergenic. With mineral barriers of zinc and titanium dioxide, this SPF 50 sunscreen protects from both UVA and UVB rays even in the water. To keep your visage from looking washed out, they’ve added a tinted moisturizer that works like a foundation. Made with antioxidant-rich Kakadu Plum that has the highest levels of Vitamin C of any fruit – 100 times more than an orange – it supports collagen formation for healthy skin. It’s also got copper and iron that cells need every day. The 3-ounce tube of face sunscreen won’t clog pores or annoy sensitive skin.


  • 100% mineral fragrance-free sunscreen.
  • Seamlessly blends into medium to tan skin tones.
  • Oil-free lotion is mattifying and provides light coverage that can double as foundation .
  • Non-nano, oxybenzone Free, alcohol-free, dye-free, phthalate-free, PABA free
  • Vegan, cruelty-free, and never tested on animals.

Buy: Australian Gold Botanical Sunscreen

Known for its coconut and mango fragrance, we love this lightweight option.

Face-friendly, animal-friendly, and reef-friendly (that means it skips those chemicals that degrade sensitive aquatic zones), this SPF 30 sunscreen is perfect for a day at the beach. While sunscreen needs to be reapplied every few hours, the moisturizers in this face lotion last all day long. The broad spectrum formula protects your face from the sun’s damaging UVA and UVB rays and goes on smoothly with a mixture of coconut, grapeseed, and olive oils. Hard to believe that over 50 years ago, Ron Rice brewed the first batch of Hawaiian Tropic sunscreen in a Kentucky garbage can, and now the company is valued at over 80 million dollars.

  • Provides 12 hours of moisturization.
  • Premium airless pump bottle.
  • Reapply after 80 minutes of swimming or sweating. Reapply immediately after towel drying.

Buy: Hawaiian Tropic Silk Hydration Weightless Sunscreen Face Lotion

Frequently Asked Questions

Who needs sunscreen?

Everyone. It helps prevent skin cancer by protecting you from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays. Sunscreen can also help prevent premature skin aging, wrinkles and age spots.

What kind should I use?

Medical experts recommend products that meet the following criteria: Broad-spectrum with a SPF 30 or higher; low potential for irritation; minimally perfumed or fragrance-free; non-comedogenic.

Do I need sunscreen on cloudy days?

Yes. Even in the cooler seasons and cloudy days, the sun emits harmful UV rays. Even on cloudy days, up to 80 percent of the sun’s harmful UV rays can penetrate the clouds.

How should I apply sunscreen?

Apply it to all skin not covered by clothing. Apply it to dry skin 15 minutes before going outside. Use a lip balm or lipstick on lips. Reapply the sunscreen every two hours or sooner if swimming.

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