CeraVe Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30
Hydrates as it protects
Blends in smoothly
Can cause a bit of greasiness throughout the day
Tint comes in only one shade
CeraVe Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30
We put the CeraVe Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30 to the test after receiving a complimentary sample from the brand. Keep reading for our full product review.
My relationship with sunscreen is fairly new. Like many women of color, I previously assumed I didn’t need sunscreen because of my skin tone. I’ve now learned that the sun doesn’t discriminate, and protecting your skin from UV rays is important no matter the amount of melanin you have.
Once I started putting sunscreen on my face daily, I made many mistakes before getting it right. My number one mistake was using body sunscreen as a moisturizer. This method ultimately clogged my pores and made my skin look greasy. On the other hand, finding an inclusive sunscreen hasn’t been easy as many SPF formulas give me a white cast.
I was excited to try out CeraVe's Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen with SPF 30 to see if it would put an end to my woes. The beloved drugstore skincare brand's face wash has worked wonders for my skin during its toughest times, so I hoped this tinted sunscreen formula would do the same. Keep reading to learn if it lived up to the test.
Best for: Dry to normal skin types
Uses: A hydrating daily tinted sunscreen that provides SPF 30 protection.
Active ingredients: Titanium dioxide (5.5%), zinc oxide (10%)
Clean? No; contains PEGs and triethanolamine
About The Brand: Founded in 2005 and developed by American dermatologists, CeraVe offers a range of skincare and body care products focused on the barrier-balancing properties of ceramides. Developed with accessibility in mind, CeraVe products are easy to find in most drugstores.
About My Skin: On the drier side
Thankfully, my skin doesn't have any major visible damage from being a late-bloomer sunscreen user. Now that I am using sunscreen, I'm paying close attention to what my skin enjoys the most. My complexion is on the drier side, so I prefer hydrating sunscreens that aren't too greasy. Sunscreens are thick and overall easier to work in with a bit of slip—plus, it's more comfortable for my skin.
Chemical vs. Mineral Sunscreen
Sunscreen formulas come in two main types: Chemical and mineral. True to its name, CeraVe's Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen is the latter. But what's the difference? Chemical sunscreen uses chemicals to filter out the sun's rays, while mineral sunscreen physically blocks UV radiation with titanium dioxide or zinc oxide. Which one is better all depends on you and your needs. I typically prefer mineral sunscreen, as it works well for my hyperpigmentation from past breakouts.
The Ingredients: Mineral SPF and signature ceramides
CeraVe's Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen does have two active ingredients: Titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. Both help protect the skin from UV rays, minimizing sun damage in all its forms with proper use. Also, as a CeraVe product, this formula features ceramides to restore and maintain barrier health. Hyaluronic acid and niacinamide round out the pack for a calm, glowing finish.
This sunscreen isn't quite Byrdie Clean due to the inclusion of PEGs and triethanolamine, and the slight fragrance may not be ideal for those who find scented products to be irritating.
The Scent: A stereotypical sunscreen aroma
Speaking of scent, I wish I had a better description of the scent of this product. But, to be honest, it just smells like sunscreen. In my opinion, the fragrance is pretty bland and unproblematic; if anything, the scent brings back memories of going to the beach with my family. The fragrance isn't strong enough to be a widespread problem for sensitive skin, but those concerned should be sure to check out the ingredients list to be sure there's nothing likely to bother your skin.
The Feel: Hydrating with a smooth slip
CeraVe's Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen has a nice slip to it, which I'm excited about. Few things are more frustrating than sunscreen that's dry and hard to work through. The consistency here is similar to a hydrating serum, and it truly felt comfortable as I worked it against my skin. While the smooth, hydrating texture may not be everyone's preference (especially for oily skin types), I didn't mind the extra moisture.
The Results: Sheer, dewy protection
When I applied CeraVe's Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen to my skin, I noticed it had a sheer tint, which made me a bit nervous. I don't usually opt for tinted sunscreen formulas, especially if I plan on wearing makeup that day. That day, I was opting for a fresh face anyway, and as I worked the product into my skin, the sheer tint slowly disappeared into my skin tone. However, I don't know if all skin tones will have the same experience—the product only comes in one shade.
After applying the sunscreen, I looked like I had done a 10-step skincare routine. My skin had a dewy finish that I appreciated, and I had just the amount of hydration I needed. But although I enjoyed the hydration of this product, the formula does have a bit of weight to it, so I can understand if someone with oily skin would prefer to stay away.
Over the day, this sunscreen made my skin appear a bit greasy. When this happened, I would touch up my skin with a blotting sheet, which did just the trick. It's also important to note that I did reapply mid-day, which is important for maintaining protection no matter which sunscreen you use. CeraVe recommends applying the product every two hours. I found it ideal to use a blotting sheet beforehand each time to minimize the greasiness I had experienced.
The Value: Fairly affordable and worth it
At $17 for 1.7 oz., CeraVe's Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen is on the higher end for a drugstore product, though still affordable compared to niche and luxury brands. In my eyes, you can't put a price on skin health, and finding a sunscreen that works for your routine is key to preventing damage. Beyond protecting your skin, this formula is a multitasker with its ceramides, hyaluronic acid, and niacinamide, making fostering an overall healthy, nourished complexion easier. You can find more affordable sunscreens if budget is your priority, but this one is a pretty good deal for a formula full of skin-loving ingredients.
Similar Products: You've got options
Supergoop Mineral Sheer Screen: If you’re not much into tinted sunscreens, try Supergoop’s Mineral Sheer Screen ($36) for a protective shield with a minimal profile. This sunscreen has hundreds of rave reviews for a good reason: The coverage is high, the quality is amazing, and the packaging keeps it simple.
Pipette Mineral Sunscreen: This mineral sunscreen ($15) is a baby-friendly, lightweight, and non-sticky formula made from plant extracts. Gentle enough for the whole family while fiercely shielding skin from UV rays with SPF 50, this non-comedogenic formula is great if you have sensitive skin or are looking for something simple yet effective.
While I like CeraVe's Hydrating Mineral sunscreen, I feel 50/50 about whether it's the best one for me. The formula is moisturizing, has a serum consistency, and is a great value for all the benefits it provides. However, I could have done without the tint, and the product made my skin a bit oily later in the day. I will use this sunscreen when I'm not wearing makeup, but I wouldn't use it every day. Ultimately, though, it gets the job done and protects my skin, and that's all that matters.
- Product Name Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30
- Product Brand CeraVe
- Price $17.00
- Weight 1.7 oz.
- Full Ingredient List Active: Titanium Dioxide - 5.5% Zinc Oxide - 10%. Inactive: Water, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Isohexadecane, Isononyl Isononanoate, Dicaprylyl Ether, Peg-30 Dipolyhydroxystearate, Triethylhexanoin, Polyglyceryl-4 Isostearate, Dicaprylyl Carbonate, Ethylene/Acrylic Acid Copolymer, Triethanolamine, Silica, Poly C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate, Stearic Acid, Ceramide Np, Ceramide Ap, Ceramide Eop, Carbomer, Niacinamide, Cetearyl Alcohol, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Sodium Chloride, Salicylic Acid, Sodium Hyaluronate,Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Cholesterol, Aluminum Stearate, Alumina, Aluminum Hydroxide, Iron Oxides, Phenoxyethanol, P-Anisic Acid, Chlorphenesin, Tocopherol, Disodium Edta, Disodium Stearoyl Glutamate, Propylene Carbonate, Citric Acid, Caprylyl Glycol, Capryloyl Salicylic Acid, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Diethylhexyl Syringylidenemalonate, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Xanthan Gum, Phytosphingosine, Polyhydroxystearic Acid, Ethylhexylglycerin.