Remember when you were little,
and your parents would apply sunscreen to you and then, instead of looking like you had been outside playing in the summer sun, you looked like you had been hanging out with ghosts? Yeah, me, too. It was really cool, said no one ever.
Fast forward a few years. I was so traumatized by the sunscreen scaries you'd think I'd actually seen ghosts instead of just looking like one. So, in true teenage rebellion, I went in the most opposite direction I could, and would basically only slather on tanning oil when I was outside (But like there was spf 4 in it so it was totally fine *NOT*).
Fast forward a few more years, and the sun spots on my face have me realizing maybe my spf should have a few other numbers in besides just a 4. So I set out on a mission to find a good sunscreen that would keep me looking like me, and, uh, you know, not like someone who could play the backup for Snapchat's logo. Which leads us to this here post, my favorite sunscreens (plus my thoughts on a few I tried and didn't like). I swear I've tested them all, I've searched high and low, here and abroad, and I've finally narrowed it down to a few favorites, based on a few criteria.
My sunscreen criteria:
*a clean ingredient list (or as clean as possible)
*blend in seamlessly, leaving no greasy traces or white shadows
*doesn't clog pores
*good for sensitive skin
*ideally unscented (although this is negotiable, depending on scent)
Other Favorites (Face)
This reminds me of the La Roche-Posay sunscreen, except it's specifically formulated for your face and it leaves your skin with a nice pearly, luminescent glow, which is great as is or under make-up.
Blends in nicely and is perfect if you're looking for a serum that provides SPF + protection against those additional environmental stressors skin is exposed to in city life.
This is a new-to-me product, but for the times I've used it, I don't have any complaints and it's done an amazing job keeping my makeup in place, even out in the sun. Plus, it smells lovely and it's nice to have a sunscreen option to put on after make-up since I don't always remember to put it on before. (Side note- the ingredient list probably isn't as clean as I'd like it to be, but I still really like the product so I'm including it in the list.)
Other Favorites (Body)
A great organic option that's also affordable. I haven't tried the spray version (but want to), but I always make an exception to my fragrance-free rule for their hawaiian sunscreen because it smells like absolute tropical heaven (but not in like a fake tropical way).
This has a nice, light scent, it blends in easily and doesn't feel greasy at all, even though it's an oil.
My All-Time #1 Favorite
Y'all this stuff is a DREAM! I mean honestly, I love it so much, I put it on even when I don't need sunscreen. I'm so extra, I know. But really, it's just amazing! It's super light and it literally melts right into your skin within seconds, no vigorous rubbing necessary. It feels very cooling, dewy and moisturizing but isn't greasy, messy, oily, or pasty in the slightest. Honestly, you'll forget you even have anything on. It also doesn't have a scent, it doesn't clog pores or breakouts, it's waterproof, it never causes rashes or breakouts on my super sensitive skin, you can now buy it at Target and it works perfectly on both face and body. Most importantly, it does it's job like the true gem that it is, as I've never gotten burned when I'm wearing it. This also comes in an SPF 60 and they have a variety of other products in their sunscreen line (i.e. ones for kids, sports, mineral, oil-free, a milky formula, primers just for face and tinted options) but this is their only one SPF product that I've tried, and TBH, I love it so much, I haven't felt the need to try their other products.
My Favorite Organic Sunscreen
By far the best, all-around, organic sunscreens I've tried. I honestly don't think there are cleaner sunscreen products on the market, and if there are, they sure don't work the miracles that these products work. I mean seriously, these actually make your skin look better, less red and more even-toned, glowing and moisturized while also protecting from sun and pollution AND fighting sun damage as it happens. I adore how they're loaded with antioxidants and all kinds of good products for your skin (You can peep all the deets on their site.) and, also, that they're fragrance-free and reef safe. In fact, I'm starting to think they leave me skin feeling softer and looking better than a lot of my other skincare products combined! Actually, recently, I've even been using the serum cream, instead of my regular rose hip oil and face cream, in the mornings, before applying makeup. The serum blends in a little easier and feels a little bit lighter, but does feel just a tad greasier at first, whereas the protezione feels a bit heavier and has just the slightest chalky tint, if not properly blended in, but, given all their other benefits, and the fact that they're 100% natural, I'm a-okay with that!
sunscreens I haven't tried (but want to) //
(I'll update this post as I try these products.)
Sunscreens to Skip (IMO) //
Coola products (I tested almost all of them and wanted so badly to like them, but just couldn't get into the textures/the lack of blendability/the greasiness/the scents.), Drunk Elephant (felt too thick and heavy), Josie Maran (smelled lovely, blended in easily, but just a tad too greasy for me + also super expensive for the amount), Supergoop! Unseen (far too greasy for me), Mineral Sunscreens and Everyday Sunscreen (they didn't rub in as easily as I would have liked them too and felt a tad heavy on my skin)