The 11 Best Drugstore Moisturizers with SPF for Hydrated, Protected Skin

We independently research, test, review, and recommend the best products. Healthcare professionals review articles for medical accuracy. Learn more about our process. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.

No matter where you live or what time of year it is, wearing SPF every day is crucial—even in the winter, and yes, even if you spend 98% of your day inside. A good moisturizer with SPF makes it easy to practice safe sun, and there are tons of affordable drugstore options on the market for all skin tones and types. If you don't have one you love, we're here to help. Look for options that won't leave a white cast, or clog pores and lead to breakouts. Depending on your skin type, you'll probably want a hydrating option that won't feel greasy or pill up under makeup. Finally, options with broad spectrum protection—meaning they protect against both UVA and UVB rays—are key.

Read on for a rundown of the best drugstore moisturizers with SPF.

What to Look for in a Drugstore Moisturizer with SPF

Level of SPF

If you get a lot of direct sun exposure on a daily basis, aim higher in terms of your SPF coverage. According to board-certified dermatologist Dr. Anna Guanche, low protection is considered anything with an SPF below 15, while medium protection ranges from SPF 15 to 29. An SPF measuring between 30 and 49 offers high protection, and anything over SPF 50 is considered to be very high protection. “SPF 50 should block out 99% of UV when applied correctly,” she says.

Broad-Spectrum Protection

Not all SPF is created equal. While many people focus on protecting against UVB rays, UVA rays are also to blame for premature aging of the skin due to sun exposure, and can even lead to the development of skin cancer. A broad-spectrum sunscreen provides protection from both UVA and UVB rays, keeping skin protected from burning and premature aging. Broad-spectrum SPF will be clearly labeled on the bottle or product page.

Ingredients

Keep your skin type in mind when shopping for your SPF-infused moisturizer and check the ingredient list for any potential irritants or pore-clogging ingredients. This is particularly important if you have acne-prone, oily, or sensitive skin. Thankfully, there is an array of products catered to each specific skin type. And it goes without saying, but a good daily moisturizer should nourish your skin and help replenish its moisture. Look for ingredients like vitamin E, which helps protect skin and repair its barrier, and hydrating ceramides. Other notable ingredients that can be found on this list include moisture-rich glycerin and skin-healing allantoin.

Lightweight Formulas

Save the heavy, greasy creams for nighttime, if you wish to use them. A good daily moisturizer should be lightweight and absorb well so makeup can apply smoothly over it. We picked the options on this list partially because they are non-greasy and suitable for all skin types, particularly oily and acne-prone.

The Finish

Certain ingredients in sunscreen—zinc and titanium oxides—are notorious for giving a white cast to skin or pilling when applied under makeup. Some drugstores may not have testers handy for you to see it for yourself, so be sure to check the ingredients and read through online reviews beforehand to determine whether or not the formula has a white cast, if avoiding that is important to you.

Best Overall: Bolden SPF 30 Brightening Moisturizer

4.9
Bolden
What We Like
  • Provides antioxidant protection

  • No white cast

  • Lightweight

What We Don't Like
  • Contains fragrance

Not only does Bolden's Brightening Moisturizer SPF 30 protect skin from UVA and UVB rays, but it contains nourishing ingredients, too—including vitamin C, a complexion-brightening antioxidant that can reduce hyperpigmentation, dark spots, sun spots, age spots, and other signs of sun damage. With melanin-rich complexions in mind, this moisturizer dries clear without any white residue. It's suitable for oily, dry, combination, and sensitive skin types, offering all-day hydration and balance. And the smooth, skin-firming formula can be worn on its own or under makeup.

Active Ingredients: Homosalate, octisalate, avobenzone, octocrylene, vitamin C, squalane, safflower oil | Skin Type: All | Size: 2 fluid ounces | SPF: 30 | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Best Budget: CeraVe AM Facial Moisturizing Lotion SPF 30

3
Cerave AM Facial Moisturizing Lotion SPF 30
What We Like
  • Restores skin barrier

  • Non-comedogenic

  • Lightweight

What We Don't Like
  • Can pill

CeraVe has been a drugstore staple (not to mention a favorite among dermatologists) since its launch in 2006. It's no wonder, then, that in terms of drugstore moisturizers with SPF, you can't do much better than this one. Formulated with three time-release ceramides, this facial moisturizer protects and hydrates skin all day. Its broad-spectrum SPF 30 sun protection contains InVisibleZinc technology, meaning the super-fine zinc formula spreads easily without leaving a white cast. It's also non-comedogenic, meaning it shouldn't clog pores and cause breakouts.

Active Ingredients: Homosalate, meradimate, octinoxate, octocrylene, zinc oxide, ceramides, niacinamide, hyaluronic acid | Skin Type: All | Size: 3 fluid ounces | SPF: 30 | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Runner-Up, Best Budget: Eucerin Daily Protection Face Lotion SPF 30

Eucerin Daily Protection Face Lotion SPF 30

Courtesy of Amazon

What We Like
  • Non-comedogenic

  • Absorbs quickly

  • Fragrance-free

What We Don't Like
  • Can pill

For a reliable, hydrating moisturizer with sun protection that doesn't break the bank, reach for this Eucerin face lotion. The extra-gentle, quick-absorbing, fragrance-free formula is ideal for sensitive skin, and it provides 24-hour hydration without feeling greasy. It's also non-comedogenic and light enough for everyday wear, both on its own or under makeup. Most importantly, this dermatologist-recommended product has zinc and titanium dioxide for broad-spectrum UVA and UVB protection.

Active Ingredients: Ensulizole, octinoxate, octisalate, titanium dioxide, zinc oxide | Skin Type: Dry, sensitive | Size: 4 fluid ounces | SPF: 30 | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Combination Skin: La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt-In Milk Sunscreen SPF 60

4.7
La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt Sunscreen Milk SPF 60

Courtesy of Amazon

What We Like
  • Absorbs quickly

  • Lightweight

  • Non-comedogenic

What We Don't Like
  • Can irritate eyes

Have both dry and oily patches? This SPF will wear comfortably across your entire face. Infused with skin conditioning vitamin E, it leaves skin feeling silky soft—minus any heavy or greasy residue.

Active Ingredients: Cell-Ox Shield Technology, vitamin E, glycerin, dimethicone, La Roche Posay Thermal Spring Water | Skin Type: All | Size: 3 fluid ounces, 5 fluid ounces | SPF: 60 | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Dry Skin: Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisture with Sunscreen

Neutrogena Oil-Free Daily Long Lasting Facial Moisturizer
What We Like
  • Non-comedogenic

  • Fragrance-free

  • Lightweight

What We Don't Like
  • Can feel sticky

If you've got dry skin, give this Neutrogena moisturizer a go. Its lightweight, non-greasy formula contains glycerin and other skin-softening ingredients to help smooth rough, dry skin and keep it moisturized for 12 hours—and, with broad-spectrum SPF 35, it shields your skin from sun damage and premature aging. It's also hypoallergenic and free of alcohol, dyes, and fragrances.

Active Ingredients: Avobenzone, octisalate, octocrylene, oxybenzone | Skin Type: Dry, sensitive | Size: 4 fluid ounces | SPF: 15 | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Oily Skin: Cetaphil DermaControl Oil Absorbing Moisturizer SPF 30

4.7
Cetaphil DermaControl Oil Control Moisturizer SPF 30
What We Like
  • Reduces shine

  • Matte finish

  • Recommended by the Skin Cancer Foundation

What We Don't Like
  • Can irritate eyes

Cetaphil is another drugstore mainstay, but we love the brand's DermaControl moisturizer for anyone with oily skin. Its four-in-one formula works to hydrate the skin, reduce shine, and provide sun protection, all while keeping oil under control. The hero ingredient is the brand's Micropearl technology, which helps create a matte finish without overdrying or irritating the skin—an ideal feature for anyone with oily skin (and dry skin, too).

Active Ingredients: Micropearl technology, Oleosome technology, avobenzone, octisalate, octocrylene | Skin Type: Oily, sensitive | Size: 4 fluid ounces | SPF: 30 | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Acne-Prone Skin: Differin Oil Absorbing Moisturizer with SPF 30

differin oil absorbing moisturizer

Courtesy of Walmart 

What We Like
  • Reduces shine

  • Non-comedogenic

  • Counteracts dryness from acne treatments

What We Don't Like
  • Can feel greasy

Differin used to be a prescription-only product, but to the relief of many, it's now sold over the counter in the U.S. If you have acne-prone skin, stock up on the brand's Oil Absorbing Moisturizer with Sunscreen. It offers much-needed hydration and broad-spectrum SPF 30 protection against UVA and UVB rays while working to reduce oil and shine. This drugstore moisturizer is made for those with oily skin, but it's suitable for all skin types. The oil-free, fragrance-free, hypoallergenic, and non-comedogenic formula is gentle on sensitive skin. While it doesn't have adapalene (the retinoid in Differin Gel), it does contain allantoin, which helps generate skin turnover—plus, it pairs well with most prescription and over-the-counter acne treatments.

Active Ingredients: Micropearl technology, oleosome technology, avobenzone, octisalate, octocrylene | Skin Type: All | Size: 4 ounces | SPF: 30 | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Sensitive Skin: Olay Complete Daily Moisturizer with Broad Spectrum Sunscreen SPF 30

Face Moisturizer by Olay Complete Daily Defense All Day Moisturizer With Sunscreen
What We Like
  • Lightweight

  • Provides antioxidant protection

  • Fragrance-free

What We Don't Like
  • Can pill

If you've got sensitive skin, we recommend Olay Complete Daily Moisturizer with Broad Spectrum Sunscreen SPF 30. The gentle formula is lightweight and contains vitamin E and aloe to help protect the skin from free radicals throughout the day. It's also fragrance-free and has SolaSheer Sensitive Technology to provide eight hours of non-irritating hydration. In terms of sun protection, this moisturizer contains zinc oxide for broad-spectrum SPF 30 protection.

Active Ingredients: Vitamin E, aloe leaf extract, avobenzone, homosalate, octisalate, octocrylene, zinc oxide | Skin Type: Sensitive | Size: 2.5 ounces | SPF: 30 | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Best Mineral Formula: CeraVe Hydrating Sunscreen SPF 50 Face Lotion

cerave hydrating sunscreen for body

Courtesy of Ulta

What We Like
  • Restores skin barrier

  • Lightweight

  • Non-comedogenic

What We Don't Like
  • Leaves a white cast

Unlike chemical formulas, mineral sunscreens (AKA physical sunscreens) create a physical barrier against UVA and UVA rays. CeraVe Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen with broad-spectrum SPF 50 shields the skin from harmful rays with titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. It also contains three moisture-locking ceramides, which help revitalize your skin's natural barrier and keep it hydrated for hours. This moisturizing facial sunscreen is non-irritating and suitable for all skin types. It doesn't have any oils, parabens, fragrance, or oxybenzone—the latter of which makes it Hawaii-compliant.

Active Ingredients: Titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, ceramides, niacinamide | Skin Type: All | Size: 2.5 fluid oucnes | SPF: 50 | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Dark Skin Tones: Black Girl Sunscreen SPF 30

Black Girl Sunscreen SPF 30

Ulta

What We Like
  • Water-resistant

  • No white cast

  • Lightweight

What We Don't Like
  • Can feel greasy

Black Girl Sunscreen is a lightweight lotion made for people of color by people of color. It has broad-spectrum SPF 30 to protect the skin from sun damage without leaving a white residue—plus, it doubles as a nourishing moisturizer. This sheer cream is filled with natural ingredients, like avocado oil, jojoba oil, cocoa butter, carrot juice, and sunflower oil. The formulation dries clear and is gentle enough for everyday use while helping to soothe, moisturize, and heal the skin.

Active Ingredients: Avocado oil, jojoba oil, cacao butter, carrot juice, sunflower oil, avobenzone, homosalate, octisalate, octocrylene | Size: 3 fluid ounces | SPF: 30 | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Best Smoothing: No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Day Cream SPF 30

No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Day Cream SPF 30

Courtesy of Ulta

What We Like
  • Firms skin

  • Reduces wrinkles

  • Boosts radiance

What We Don't Like
  • Contains fragrance

If you're looking to improve the appearance of fine lines or prevent premature signs of aging, check out this No7 moisturizer. Recommended by Byrdie senior editor Hallie Gould, this ultra-rich cream smoothes the complexion while firming the skin—thanks in part to the brand's Matrixyl 3000 technology, which contains powerful peptides to help reduce the look of wrinkles and protect skin from sun damage and other environmental stressors. After two weeks of use, this facial cream can provide a refreshed, healthy-looking glow.

Active Ingredients: Matrixyl 3000+, No7 Double Defence Technology, avobenzone, octisalate, octocrylene | Size: 1.6 ounces | SPF: 30 | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Keep your skin type in mind when shopping for your SPF-infused moisturizer and check the ingredient list for any potential irritants or pore-clogging ingredients. This is particularly important if you have acne-prone, oily, or sensitive skin. Thankfully, there is an array of products catered to each specific skin type. And it goes without saying, but a good daily moisturizer should nourish your skin and help replenish its moisture. Look for ingredients like vitamin E, which helps protect skin and repair its barrier, and hydrating ceramides. Other notable ingredients that can be found on this list include moisture-rich glycerin and skin-healing allantoin.

Save the heavy, greasy creams for nighttime, if you wish to use them. A good daily moisturizer should be lightweight and absorb well so makeup can apply smoothly over it. We picked the options on this list partially because they are non-greasy and suitable for all skin types, particularly oily and acne-prone.

Certain ingredients in sunscreen—zinc and titanium oxides—are notorious for giving a white cast to skin or pilling when applied under makeup. Some drugstores may not have testers handy for you to see it for yourself, so be sure to check the ingredients and read through online reviews beforehand to determine whether or not the formula has a white cast, if avoiding that is important to you.

FAQ
  • Should you wear moisturizer with SPF every day?

    Yes. The FDA recommends wearing a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 15 every day and reapplying every two hours. Broad-spectrum sunscreen is noted as a way to help prevent skin cancer and premature aging related to UV radiation.

  • Is SPF 20 enough?

    Everyone should wear SPF 15 or higher, according to the FDA. Many of the moisturizers on this list exceed the recommendation and offer SPF 30 or above.

  • Where should I apply sunscreen?

    You should apply liberally to any area that isn't covered by clothing, including your nose, ears, neck, lips, hands, and feet, says the FDA. You can also wear clothing with built-in sun protection to protect areas usually covered by your clothing.

  • Why do I need SPF in my moisturizer?

    Products containing sunscreen help protect your complexion against the sun’s UV rays, which can damage your skin and lead to wrinkles, a loss of elasticity, and hyperpigmentation. By using a moisturizer that already has SPF in it, you’re eliminating an extra step in your skincare routine and getting a product that multitasks in the best way.

  • How often should I reapply SPF?

    “Sunscreen should be applied every morning, and reapplied every two hours—no matter the SPF, sunscreen should always be reapplied,” says Dr. Guanche. If you’re using a moisturizer with SPF underneath your makeup, consider setting sprays or brush-on loose powders infused with sun protection for your touch-ups.

  • Are drugstore brands good?

    Absolutely! Some drugstore brands perform just as well (if not better, in some cases) than their higher-priced counterparts, so don’t disregard them. Better yet, at accessible price points, drugstore products are more economical to restock, since you’ll be applying frequently.

Article Sources
Byrdie takes every opportunity to use high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial guidelines to learn more about how we keep our content accurate, reliable and trustworthy.
  1. Sage E, Girard PM, Francesconi S. Unravelling UVA-induced mutagenesis. Photochem Photobiol Sci. 2012 Jan;11(1):74-80. doi: 10.1039/c1pp05219e. Epub 2011 Sep 8. PMID: 21901217.

  2. Mancuso JB, Maruthi R, Wang SQ, Lim HW. Sunscreens: An Update. Am J Clin Dermatol. 2017 Oct;18(5):643-650. doi: 10.1007/s40257-017-0290-0. PMID: 28510141.

  3. Thiele JJ, Ekanayake-Mudiyanselage S. Vitamin E in human skin: organ-specific physiology and considerations for its use in dermatology. Mol Aspects Med. 2007 Oct-Dec;28(5-6):646-67. doi: 10.1016/j.mam.2007.06.001. Epub 2007 Jul 3. PMID: 17719081.

  4. Prager W, Gauglitz GG. Effectiveness and Safety of an Overnight Patch Containing Allium cepa Extract and Allantoin for Post-Dermatologic Surgery Scars. Aesthetic Plast Surg. 2018 Aug;42(4):1144-1150. doi: 10.1007/s00266-018-1172-4. Epub 2018 Jun 14. PMID: 29948103; PMCID: PMC6097777.

  5. He H, Li A, Li S, Tang J, Li L, Xiong L. Natural components in sunscreens: Topical formulations with sun protection factor (SPF). Biomed Pharmacother. 2021 Feb;134:111161. doi: 10.1016/j.biopha.2020.111161. Epub 2020 Dec 24. PMID: 33360043.

Related Stories