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If there’s one skincare statement that every dermatologist can agree on, it’s this: the easiest way to prevent premature aging is to slather on sunscreen regularly. Don’t get us wrong—catching some rays is a job that many of us would gladly do full-time, but baking without protection is extremely damaging for your skin. Think effects like wrinkles, sagging, discoloration, sun spots, and even more serious, skin cancer. Combine this with a sensitive complexion and you’ve got quite the challenge to tackle.
There are all different types of sunscreen formulas, but not all are made for fussy skin types. Thankfully, with more research and improvements, formulations just keep getting better and better. Not only are they super effective and backed by rigorous testing, but they’re now offered in a slew of different textures with multiple uses. Sunscreen certainly isn’t the sexiest thing about summer, but it is the best way to keep your biggest organ shielded, supple, and soft.
Below, find the best sunscreens for sensitive skin that do it all and more.
Best Overall: La Roche-Posay Anthelios Cooling Water Sunscreen Lotion SPF 60
Once this coveted formula makes contact with skin, it instantly feels cooling with its weightless texture. Made with the brand’s iconic Thermal Spring Water, this sunscreen is a refreshing experience, especially when reapplied after spending time outside in the sun. It’s a favorite among users as it doesn’t cause irritation, has a light, clean scent, and doesn’t leave you with the dreaded white cast.
Best Budget: Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Liquid Sunblock SPF 70
Cult-favorite + glowing reviews = one of the most awarded sunscreens around. What makes this formula special is Neutrogena’s famed Helioplex® Technology, a powerful combo of ingredients that blocks both UVA/UVB rays from harming your skin. And a little goes a long way—a dime-sized amount is enough to cover your face. Just remember to reapply throughout the day. Our favorite perk: no ghostly residue in sight.
Best Under Makeup: Kiehl’s Super Fluid Daily UV Defense SPF 50+
The worst thing a sunscreen can be is sticky and this one definitely isn’t that. The thin, almost watery, texture glides smoothly onto the face and never feels like it’s “slipping”. This formula is meant to be applied as the last step, right before makeup, and with good reason—users love that it sits flawlessly underneath their foundation, similar to a primer. Because it’s so light, it immediately soaks into skin with no wait time. In addition to its sun protection, it also fights against pollution and free radicals—two major skin saboteurs.
Best Waterproof: Sun Bum Sunscreen Lotion SPF 70
From the deck to the pool to the sand to the beach and back again—when you’re all over the place in the summer, it’s important to find a sunscreen that’ll stay with you through it all. Enter: a waterproof and sweatproof formula that’s just as active as you are. Users love its creamy consistency, gentle (but pleasantly sweet) smell, and its long-lasting effectiveness. Plus, it’s moisturizing properties keep skin feeling plump and looking healthy.
Best for Acne-Prone Skin: EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46
With over 20,000 (!) sold on Dermstore, it begs the question: is this thing a miracle-worker or what? In short: yes. Hyaluronic acid intensely moisturizes while lactic acid flushes out your pores. Plus, you’ll find no stickiness or goopiness here—just a smooth, healthy finish.
Best for Dry Skin: Eve Lom Daily Protection SPF 50
Though it comes with a higher price tag, this luxurious sunscreen includes a number of beneficial anti-aging ingredients. Vitamin B3 reduces the look of wrinkles and encourages new collagen growth, making the complexion appear fuller. It also has tightening benefits thanks to Paracress flower extract. The best part is its sheer consistency, which can be worn alone under makeup or underneath your daily moisturizer.
Best for Combination Skin: Drunk Elephant Umbra Daily Defense Sunscreen SPF 30
This sunscreen feels so weightless, you’ll almost forget you slathered it on. Formulated with 20% zinc oxide, this powerful protector works well for those who are oily, dry, sensitive or a combo of all three. Plant extracts, like algae and sunflower sprout, work together to shelter skin from outside forces, like free radical damage. Users note that this formula works best with little to no makeup.
Best Tinted: Coola Mineral Face Matte Tint Moisturizer SPF 30
Users call this tinted SPF a game-changer, smooth as silk, and acne-friendly. If that doesn’t convert you, maybe it’s a plethora of product awards will. Made with hydrating shea butter, the formula is moisturizing and soothing, but also mattifying so it doesn’t leave skin looking shiny or feeling oily. The hint of coverage is perfect for those who like more of a fresh, still-your-skin look.
Best CC Cream: Supergoop! CC Cream Daily Correct Sunscreen SPF 35
When it comes to double power, this product reigns supreme. As a color-correcting cream and SPF in one, this satiny formula provides broad spectrum protection and a natural-looking coverage. Heavier than a tinted moisturizer, but lighter than a traditional foundation, it’s perfect for daily wear in summer because it’s super breathable. All it takes is a few dabs and swipes for a youthful glow.
Best Spray: Alba Botanica Very Emollient Mineral Spray Sunscreen SPF 35
Formulated specifically for sensitive skin, this fragrance-free sunscreen spray is incredibly handy when it comes to application. The air-powered mist gets every inch at every angle, making it convenient when you’re on-the-go or struggling to get sunblock on little ones. Plus, the green warrior in you will be happy to know that the formula is also biodegradable (score!).
Best for Body: Pacifica Mineral Body Butter SPF 50
This body sunscreen checks all the boxes: a hydrating and buttery texture, 100% vegan and cruelty-free, and a tropical scent that really puts you in that summer mindset (or at the very least, makes you crave a colorful cocktail). The best part: it lasts all day—even in water, sand, and sweat. Users love that it absorbed quickly and left a subtle glow.
Best Balm: Avène Hydrating Sunscreen Balm SPF 50+
Travelers and minimalists, this easy-to-use stick is exactly what you need in your carry-on. Packed into this tiny balm is SPF 50+, moisturizing shea butter, and soothing lavender extract. With 24-hour hydration and 80 minutes of water resistance, this mini is great for trips of all kinds this summer—whether you’re camping, going out of the country, or hiking at your local park. All there is to do is pop the top open, swipe onto areas where you need protection, and you’re good to go.