Sunscreen is a year-round must-have, but especially helpful when the weather gets warmer and the sun stays out longer. Even if you’re working from home every day and saving your leisurely walks or daily run for the early evening, having the best sunscreens for 2021 on hand ensures that your skin is shielded from sun damage, seen and unseen. And this year, the options are more expansive than ever.
Understandably so, sunscreen isn’t exactly fun to apply. The ones we used as kids smelled weird and added an extra step to our routines. Sadly, a lot of them still leave behind an ugly white-gray cast that only looks worse when we attempt to cover it with makeup. Thankfully, brands have been upping their game in recent years so we’re not stuck with the old-school traditional formulas we tend to skip. Now, we have setting sprays infused with SPF protection, mousse and mist formulas that leave us feeling refreshed and lightweight lotions that blend down into a clear finish.
Ahead, I’ve gathered some of the best sunscreens to launch so far this year for every budget, some of which also provide protection from the blue light pollution emitted from our laptops and phone screens.
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Mara Algae + Zinc Sea Kale Sunscreen Serum
You can improve your skin and protect it at the same time. Algae, zinc, blue sea kale and hemp seed hydrate skin, while mineral, non-nano zinc oxide provides broad-spectrum UVA / UVB SPF 30 sun protection.
Hero Superlight Sunscreen SPF 30
ZitSticka Megashade Breakout-Proof SPF Serum
Another fave pimple patch brand has expanded into stellar skincare and lightweight sunscreen. This chemical-mineral hybrid is a sensitive- and acne-prone-skin serum but leaves behind a pretty dewy glow.
Tula Mineral Magic Mineral Sunscreen Fluid Broad Spectrum SPF 30
This oil-free, non-comedogenic formula has a soft matte finish so it’s great under makeup.
Blue Lizard Mineral Sunscreen Sensitive SPF 50+ Spray
Mineral sunscreen in an easy-to-use spray? Yes, please! We especially love this unscented version for sensitive skin. And of course, it has broad-spectrum UVA/UVB SPF 50+.
Australian Gold Plant Based SPF 50 Face Lotion
The cult-fave brand rolled out sunscreen packed with nourishing aloe vera and coconut oil to soften skin. Of course, the full-spectrum SPF 50 protects skin against UVA and UVB rays, as well as blue light and infrared light, as well.
Cetaphil Sheer Mineral Sunscreen Lotion for Face & Body
This lightweight, unscented sunscreen was designed for even the most sensitive skin. It provides daily sun protection with sheer zinc oxide and titanium dioxide with prebiotics and skin-soothing vitamin E.
Sunday Riley Light Hearted Broad Spectrum Spf 30 Sunscreen
It’s hard to believe this is Sunday Riley’s first-ever sunscreen but the brand wanted to ensure it packed a two-for-one punch. It’s both a physical and chemical sunscreen, with a 99.99 percent oil-free formulation for all skin types. Broad-spectrum SPF 30 protects skin with octisalate, octocrylene and zinc oxide—without a white cast. Plant-based xanthophyll provides blue light defense while antioxidant turmeric offers that environmental protection.
La Roche-Posay Anthelios Mineral SPF 30 Moisturizer + Hyaluronic Acid
Hydrate and protect your skin from the sun all at the same time. This non-comedogenic sunscreen (meaning, it won’t clog your pores) contains UVA/UVB filters and antioxidants, as well as hydrating hyaluronic acid and glycerin.
Kate Somerville Daily Deflector Mineral Sunscreen SPF 40 PA++++
Non-nano zinc oxide provides the physical protection you need against harmful UVA/UVB rays, as well as shields against blue light. Of course, there’s also broad-spectrum protection whether outside in the sun or working from home in front of the window.
Colleen Rothschild Beauty Triple Defense Sunscreen Broad-Spectrum SPF 40
Don’t sleep on this mineral sunscreen with UVA/UVB coverage, as well as Hikari Bleu to defend against blue light, SkinBlitz as a barrier against pollutants and vitamin C to help brighten skin. Available 4/22.
Australian Gold Plant Based Face Lotion SPF 50
Made with aloe vera and coconut oil, this lotion nourishes skin while it protects it from UVA and UVB rays.
Alba Botanica Facial Sheer Shield Sunscreen SPF 45
Here’s a sheer, lightweight, and easy-blend formula that blends down into a clean dry and matte finish. Layer this under makeup or wear alone for water-resistant protection for up to 80 minutes. The formula is also biodegradable, gluten-free, and reef-safe.
Dermalogica Invisible Physical Defense Sunscreen SPF 30
The non-nano zinc oxide in this versatile sunscreen protects against outside UV rays as well as blue light pollution from phone and tablet screens. Notable ingredients include a mushroom complex for reducing redness, green tea for targeting inflammation, hyaluronic acid for hydration.
Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench Hyaluronic Hydrating Moisturizer SPF 45
For those who find traditional sunscreen to be drying, this cream-to-water formula is a 30 percent hyaluronic acid complex and an exclusive Pentavitin technology that helps keep the skin hydrated for up to 72 hours.
Coola Full Spectrum 360° Refreshing Water Mist Organic Face Sunscreen SPF 18
Mist and “reset the day” with this mostly organic sun protecting-mist formulated with multiple ingredients that shield the skin from outdoor UV rays and indoor blue light pollution.
Coola Classic Body Organic Sunscreen Spray SPF 50 Fragrance-Free
The standout function of this skin-nourishing sunscreen is its ability to cover every part of your body, even as you flip it upside down to apply in hard-to-reach places.
Clinique Superdefense City Block SPF 50+ Daily Energy + Face Protector
This facial sunscreen works for all skin types is quick-absorbing with just a hint of tint for easy application and a glowy finish when you’re on the go.
Supergoop! Play Body Mousse SPF 50 with Blue Sea Kale
You’ll want to keep applying this irresistible whipped formula all over your body for a hit of sun protection and moisture, all thanks to coconut oil and antioxidant-rich blue sea kale.
Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protector Cream SPF 50+ Face Sunscreen
This face and body can keep up with an active lifestyle thanks to its exclusive “synchro shield” technology that kicks into overdrive when you’re in heat or water.
Biossance Squalane + Zinc Sheer Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30 PA +++
This sunscreen is a first of its kind 100 percent non-nano zinc oxide formula infused with calming water lily and moisturizing squalane.
Tula Protect + Glow Daily Sunscreen Gel Broad Spectrum SPF 30
Gently exfoliate and shield your face from sun damage simultaneously with this gel, powered by probiotics and fruit enzymes.
Solara Suncare Glow Getter Nutrient Boosted Daily Sunscreen
This multi-beneficial sunscreen is dermatologist-approved for its effective mineral formula and added (responsibly-sourced) mica for a subtle shimmer effect.
Soap & Glory Urban Legend Green Tea & Vitamin C Antioxidant Day Cream SPF 30
A sunscreen and moisturizer in one infused with green tea to ward off redness and vitamin C for a gradually brighter complexion.
Sun Bum SPF 30 Scalp & Hair Mist
Don’t forget your scalp is skin, too. This lightweight mist provides protection to your head without weighing down the hair.
Native Sunscreen With Zinc Oxide Broad Specturm SPF 30
Choose from this yummy fragrance or unscented and get both a face and body sunscreen that feels ultra-lightweight for every day.
Youth Corridor Soothe & Defend SPF 30
A combo of zinc oxide, octisalate and octocrylene provide well-rounded sun protection, while antioxidant-rich vitamin E protects skin and green tea and aloe treat and repair any damage.