These Sunscreens Won't Break You Out (We Tried Them)

Updated 06/20/17
best sunscreen for acne prone skin - oil free sunscreen

When it comes to wearing sunscreen, I'm embarrassed to admit I haven't always been particularly diligent. I go ham on skincare—applying essences, toners, serums, and moisturizers for more time than most, but somehow the importance of following up with a sunscreen took longer to seep into my consciousness. That is, until I started to notice sun damage and wrinkles beginning to creep up on my face.

Since that moment, I've been crazy about applying sunscreen each morning and throughout the day. The only thing is, there are so many on the market that cause breakouts. I've tried and tried to find the perfect formula. So I reached out to the editors at Byrdie HQ to hear about their best picks for acne-prone skin. Below, we each describe our favorite sunscreen and why it'll never cause breakouts (or stress).

cerave sunscreen - best sunscreen for acne prone skin
CeraVe Sunscreen Face Lotion $11

"CeraVe Sunscreen Broad Spectrum Face Lotion ($13) is the best drugstore sunscreen money can buy. It's water-resistant and great for sensitive skin, and it's oil-free, non-greasy, and noncomedogenic, meaning it's specifically designed not to break you out." — Amanda Montell, associate features editor

vera bella cucumber aloe moisture screen - best sunscreen for acne prone skin
Vera Bella Cucumber Aloe Moisture Screen $48

"I couldn't be more in love with this little bottle of goodness. I've been struggling for a long time trying to find a really great sunscreen that doesn't cause breakouts. I don't have particularly oily skin, but the added layer of greasy, chalky product has done me in time and time again.

"That is, until a fellow editor suggested I try her favorite L.A.-born secret. Vera Bella has found a way to seamlessly work SPF into the most calming, soothing, feel-good moisturizer I've ever applied to my face. It smells like cucumbers, it's fast-absorbing, and it keeps my skin completely clear. I'm officially a convert, and if you haven't tried it, you should." — Hallie Gould, senior editor

tatcha sunscreen - best sunscreen for acne prone skin
Tatcha Silken Pore Perfecting Sunscreen $65

"Tatcha Silken Pore Perfecting Sunscreen ($65) is the only sunscreen I've ever tried that actually feels like it's mattifying my skin. It's ridiculously silky, weightless, and fragrance-free. Every time I run out of the stuff, an angel dies." — Amanda Montell, associate features editor

Sunforgettable Loose Mineral Sunscreen - best sunscreen for acne prone skin
Colorscience Sunforgettable Loose Mineral Sunscreen Brush $57

"I keep one of these mineral powder sunscreens in every purse so I'm never without it. Not only does it protect my skin from the sun, but it doesn't ruin my makeup when reapplying throughout the day. And for those of you worried about using a powder atop makeup, I can assure you that this formula blends right in for a flawless, non-cakey finish." — Katharine McEntee, editorial assistant

la roche-posay melt-in sunscreen milk - best sunscreen for acne prone skin
La Roche-Posay Anthelios 60 Face & Body Melt-In Sunscreen Milk $35

"I'll admit it: I don't wear sunscreen nearly as much as I should, mostly because it's another step in my routine, and I'm always in such a rush in the morning, but also because it tends to be too greasy, chalky, or boasts that sunscreen smell and I'd like to reserve that for beach days—not the office. But when I heard this offering from La Roche-Posay was the only sunscreen to earn a perfect score from Consumer Reports, I figured it was worth a shot. Indeed, it's feather-light, has an almost undetectable scent, and it doesn't turn my skin off in the slightest.

I feel comfortable knowing that I'm protecting my skin without affecting the way my makeup lies (you know, priorities)." — Lindsey Metrus, managing editor

sun bum face stick - best sunscreen for acne prone skin
Sun Bum Face Stick $11

"I tossed this cute little stick into my bag for a music festival a few weeks ago mostly because it was the only sunscreen small enough to fit. I was intrigued by the stick form, but wary because a lot of stick products tend to feel goopy and thick once you actually apply. Not so the case with this little guy. I swiped it across my forehead, cheeks, and nose throughout the day, and it went on silky smooth, almost like a primer. It didn't break me out or leave my skin oily by the end of the day. Plus, it smells like bananas." — Faith Xue, editorial director

elta md uv daily - best sunscreen for acne prone skin
Elta MD UV Daily Broad-Spectrum $27

"This daily formula is super silky and lightweight—perfect for sensitive or acne-prone skin. Most dermatologists will recommend it over any of its more expensive counterparts, too. Rachel Nazarian, MD, says, 'Everything in the entire line is oil-free, so no flaring of acne or rosacea conditions will occur.'" — Hallie Gould, senior editor

Related Stories