Choosing a Healthy Sunscreen

  • Healthy Sunscreen Reviews

    Wearing sunscreen is probably the most important thing you can do to stay healthy during the summer. It protects your skin from the sun’s ultraviolet radiation, preventing burns, aging, and skin cancer.

    Choosing a sunscreen can be difficult, and may depend on what—or who—you're buying it for. To help, we've looked at the options in a few different categories. You may also want to read this detailed guide on choosing a safe sunscreen, which includes the FDA’s new 2011 sunscreen guidelines. Click “next” to start the slideshow.

  • Choosing a Sunscreen for Babies

    Young babies should be kept out of the sun entirely. Infants older than six months should still wear something to keep their face in the shade, but they can start to wear sunscreen as well. "Look for a sunscreen with only zinc-oxide and titanium dioxide," suggests dermatologist Dr. Jeffrey Benabio. And try a tear-free, fragrance-free formula that won't sting the eyes.

    Click next to get Healthline’s recommendations.

  • Best Sunscreens for Babies

    Healthline Recommends: Armada Baby (SPF 50) offers excellent UVA and UVB protection in an all-natural, hypoallergenic formula that is extremely gentle—tender enough even for baby's skin. Our test baby loved it. It's also a good option for adults with very sensitive skin.

    Special Mention: Specialized baby sunscreens tend to be pricey, but Blue Lizard "Baby Lizard" (SPF 30+) is a good option at a lower price point and can be found at your local pharmacy.

    Learn more.

  • Choosing a Sunscreen for Kids

    Kids are active and finicky, so what they need is a long-acting, no-fuss sunscreen that won't wear off quickly and won't get in their eyes while they play. Using a waterproof sunscreen is important because, let's face it, your kids are going to get wet at some point.

    Click “next” to get Healthline’s recommendations.

  • Best Sunscreen for Kids

    Healthline Recommends: Coppertone Kids Pure and Simple (SPF 50) is a tear-free formula that is waterproof and free of all oils, fragrances, and dyes. It's utilizes the safest chemicals available and a gentle mineral formula to provide great UVA and UVB protection. It also rubs in easily without leaving too much residue, so you can get it on your child before he or she squirms out of your grip.

  • Choosing a Sunscreen for Acne-Prone Skin

    If you have the type of skin that requires special attention to prevent acne, you may be wary of putting more oily gunk on your face. Dr. Benabio suggests looking for a chemical-based sunscreen, as mineral-based ones can clog your pores. If you do have special skin concerns, always consult your dermatologist before trying out these products.

    Click “next” to get Healthline’s recommendations.

  • Best Sunscreens for Acne-Prone Skin

    Healthline Recommends: La Roche-Posay Anthelios (SPF 40) utilizes a new and proprietary ingredient called “mexoryl sx” that provides the best possible (and most photo-stable) UVA protection without clogging pores or causing breakouts. This technology has been available in Europe for years but was only recently approved in the U.S.

    Learn about other sunscreen options for acne-prone skin.

  • Choosing a Sunscreen for an Active Lifestyle

    If you're going to be running, hiking, shooting hoops, or playing any other outdoor sport, you'll need a sunscreen that is lightweight, durable, and water resistant. You don't want to work up a good sweat that will wash away your protection.

    Click “next” to get Healthline’s recommendations.

  • Best Sunscreens an Active Lifestyle

    Healthline Recommends: Beyond Coastal Active (SPF 30) goes on fast and dry. It's comfortable and nonobtrusive, and it is exceptionally sweat-resistant. (It'll hold up to even the most extreme athletics). And unlike other sport formulas on the market, Beyond Coastal uses all-natural, skin-safe ingredients and doesn't contain the dangerous chemical oxybenzone.

    Learn about other great sunscreens for an active lifestyle.

  • Choosing a Sunscreen for Sensitive Skin

    If you've had a hard time in the past with sunscreens or your skin typically responds poorly to beauty or skin care products, you should look for something chemical- and fragrance-free.

    Click “next” to get Healthline’s recommendations.

  • Best Sunscreen for Sensitive Skin

    Healthline Recommends: Mychelle Sun Shield (SPF 28) is an all-natural, highly effective mineral-based sunscreen that contains organic aloe and other ingredients to moisturize and soothe the skin. Its formula also includes antioxidants that can keep the skin looking and feeling fresh. And it feels nice on your skin. "It didn't feel greasy or oily, which made it great for a face sunscreen," says our tester.

    Learn about other great sunscreens for sensitive skin.

  • Choosing an Anti-Aging Sunscreen

    In many ways, sunscreen is already the best anti-aging beauty product. By blocking UV rays, you'll keep your skin looking younger longer. But there are some specialty products that combine anti-aging ingredients with sunscreens in one package.

    Click “next” to get Healthline’s recommendations.

  • Best Anti-Aging Sunscreen

    Healthline Recommends: While claims to anti-aging are often a little dubious, Ocean Potion Anti-Aging (SPF 30) does contain antioxidants like Vitamin C, tocopheryl acetate, and algae extract that neutralize free radicals in skin cells, leaving your skin feeling and looking fresh. Despite its natural sounding name, Ocean Potion is a chemical-based product, but it does not contain oxybenzone.

    Read more.

  • Bonus: Best Sunscreen to Keep in Your Pockets

    Protecting yourself from UV rays is one the most important steps you can take to keep your skin healthy. So why not make it even easier on yourself?

    California Baby Sunblock Stick-No Fragrance (SPF 30+) has no chemicals, fragrances, or other unnatural agents, and it has a stable formula that provides long-lasting UVA and UVB protection. It’s affordable and it also comes in a convenient 0.5 ounce stick that'll fit in your purse, gym bag, or pocket and applies without the mess of a lotion or spray. 

    Learn about other great portable and travel-ready sunscreens.

  • Staying Healthy During the Summer Season

    Summertime screams healthy: hiking outdoors, swimming at the local pool or lake, playing outdoor sports, and no excuse to put off a daily walk or jog. But you can always improve this healthiest of seasons:

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