The Right Face Sunscreen That Won't F*ck Up Your Skin

Betches may receive a portion of revenue if you click a link and purchase a product or service. The links are independently placed and do not influence editorial content.

The days of laying out in the sun and monitoring the UV index like it’s our full-time job are quickly approaching. While this may be a more enjoyable task (who doesn’t like being tan?), something many of us avoid or simply forget to do before basking in the sun is apply sunscreen. And, TBH, I’m not trying to look like I’m fresh out of a tanning bed circa 2007 (Playboy bunny sticker an all). You can easily avoid a lobster-red sunburn by just applying a little SPF, especially to your face–one of the first areas of your body the sun reaches. Because the only time it’s okay to be a lobster is if you’re quoting Phoebe from Friends

Choosing the right face sunscreen is crucial for all skin types to help protect your skin from the sun. Not sure which sunscreen is best for your skin type? It feels like there are so many kinds that fuck up your skin, so here’s a quick cheat sheet.

Acne-Prone Skin

If you have acne-prone skin, finding any sunscreen that doesn’t completely irritate your skin probably seems impossible. Sticking to an oil-free sunscreen will save you from a horrendous breakout.

UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF

This fragrance-free sunscreen is specially made to provide light hydration and broad-spectrum sun protection. It contains lactic acid and sodium hyaluronate which helps clear pores, moisturize the skin, and prevent any further dreadful breakouts.

Shop it: EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF, $41, Dermstore

Anthelios Clear Skin Dry Touch Sunscreen

This dry-touch formula sunscreen is made with perlite, which is a powder that comes from volcanic rock and is known for it’s oil absorbing properties so your skin won’t look greasy AF. 

Shop it:La Roche-Posay Anthelios Clear Skin Dry Touch Sunscreen SPF 60, $19.99, Dermstore

Sensitive Skin

Any sunscreen made with chemical UV blockers can aggravate your face, which is a nightmare for anyone with sensitive skin. Nobody wants stinging, burning, or redness. So if you’re on the sensitive side, look for a mineral sunscreen.

PLAY 100% Mineral Lotion

Made with zinc oxide, this 100% mineral sunscreen will protect your skin from the harsh sun, while the clean, plant-based ingredients will help nourish and shield your skin from all angles.

Shop it: Supergoop PLAY 100% Mineral Lotion SPF 30 with Green Algae, $14, Supergoop

Oil Control Moisturizer

Hydrate, repair, and protect your sensitive skin with this non-comedogenic (aka won’t clog your pores), dermatologist-tested, and synthetic fragrance-free SPF. This 4-in-1 formula helps absorb oil, reduce shine, hydrate and provide sun protection. Get yourself a sunscreen that can do it all.

Shop it: Cetaphil Oil Control Moisturizer, $17.89, Target

Dry Skin

With dry skin, you want to look for a sunscreen with hydrating ingredients, such as hyaluronic acid and sodium hyaluronate. Also, you should avoid anything with fragrances—they can be irritating.

Water Drench Broad Spectrum SPF 45 Hyaluronic Cloud Moisturizer

The extremely lightweight sunscreen shields your skin against harsh UV rays. Once applying, your dry skin will feel moisturized, hydrated and feel silky soft – all without irritating your skin.

Shop it: Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench® Broad Spectrum SPF 45 Hyaluronic Cloud Moisturizer, $55, Dermstore

Pro-Collagen Marine Cream SPF 30

This cult-favorite sunscreen is clinically proven to increase your skin’s hydration while also reducing the appearance of wrinkles, which makes it totally worth the price tag. Bye-bye sun damage, hello glowy skin. 

Shop it: Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine Cream SPF, $132, Dermstore

Oily Skin

When you have oily skin, you should use an SPF that has a high concentration of Zinc Oxide—at least 5%. This is important as it helps mattify oily skin.

Block Star Daily Mineral Sunscreen

This lightweight, silky, 100% sheer mineral sunscreen blends into skin effortlessly without clogging your pores or leaving behind streaks or white residue. It’s made to help control excess oil that may get worse over the summer and minimizes the appearance of pores.

Shop it: BlissBlock Star Daily Mineral Sunscreen, $21.99, Target

Acne Control Oil and Pore Control Mattifier Broad Spectrum SPF

Murad’s SPF is made with oil-trapping microspheres that mattify your skin and deliver smooth, soft skin. It’s formulated to control oil and shine for 10 hours while protecting your skin against the sun.

Shop it: Murad Acne Control Oil and Pore Control Mattifier Broad Spectrum SPF 45, $49, Murad

Wrinkles and Fine Lines

One of the downfalls of basking in the sun is how much it can age your skin. Luckily, using a broad spectrum formula sunscreen everyday can protect your skin from the sun’s rays and delay damaging and premature aging effects of sun exposure.

A Perfect World SPF 40 Moisturizer

This SPF moisturizer will hydrate your skin while helping delay any signs of aging. It’s antioxidant-rich white tea-infused formula will nourish your skin and further protect its youthful appearance. 

Shop it: Origins A Perfect World SPF 40 Moisturizer, $52, Target

Resist Youth-Extending Daily Hydrating Fluid

A daily hydrating, broad-spectrum SPF that works to promote healthier, younger looking skin. The water-light formula visibly reduces fine lines and wrinkles while helping to prevent further signs of aging. 

Shop it: Paula’s Choice Youth-Extending Daily Hydrating Fluid SPF 50, $37, Dermstore

Editor’s Note: This post has been updated with new information in April 2023. It was originally written by Sydney Wingfield

Image: Pansfun Images /

Abbey Westlin
Abbey Westlin
Abbey Westlin is a self-proclaimed iced coffee enthusiast, practitioner of beauty, and fashion connoisseur. By day, she makes a living by creating Fashion and Lifestyle content for Betches Media. By night, she enjoys cooking intricate meals, sipping a glass (or four) of rosé, and keeping up with the news. Follow her on Instagram @abbey_westlin.