What type of look would you like to create?
This will help us personalize your experience.

The 16 Best Mineral Sunscreens You’ll Actually Want to Wear

best-mineral-sunscreen-Thumbnailbest-mineral-sunscreen-Header
Flying Colours Ltd/Getty Images

Mineral, or physical, sunscreens have skyrocketed in popularity in recent years thanks to their reputation for being reef-safe and for being tolerable on most skin types. Thanks to zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, or a combination of both active ingredients, these formulas are known to be gentle—but, they can also be tough to rub in and often leave behind a white or grey cast—especially on darker skin tones. Sunscreen technology has grown leaps and bounds in recent years to keep up with new demands, but it can be tough to know just what formula will work for your skin.

One thing's for certain: wherever you stand on the Great Sunscreen Debate—i.e. mineral vs. chemical—the most important thing is to always wear SPF (yes, even if you aren’t in direct sunlight) to help prevent sunburns and long-term sun damage that may lead to skin cancer. If you’re looking to try out a mineral SPF and need some guidance, we’re sharing 16 sunscreen products that will not only protect your skin from those UVA and UVB rays, but also have other benefits too. Keep scrolling for our picks.

16 Best Mineral Sunscreens

1. Best all-around:

BIOSSANCE Squalane + Zinc Sheer Mineral Sunscreen

BIOSSANCE Squalane + Zinc Sheer Mineral Sunscreen
Courtesy of BIOSSANCE

Feeling more like a lotion than a sunscreen, you may actually look forward to applying this hydrating formula. With SPF 30, moisturizing squalane, and cooling water lily, it’s worth stocking up on (which is why we’re thrilled they make it in a jumbo size).

2. Best facial sunscreen:

COCOKIND Daily SPF

COCOKIND Daily SPF
Courtesy of COCOKIND

In addition to zinc oxide, which gives this sunscreen its SPF 32 protection, it also has blue phytoplankton and microalgae to help fight the effects of blue light and pollution, respectively. Best of all, it leaves skin with a smooth, shine-free finish before you move onto makeup (or not!).

3. Best sunscreen stick:

AVEENO Positively Mineral™ Sunscreen Stick, SPF 50

AVEENO Positively Mineral™ Sunscreen Stick, SPF 50
Courtesy of AVEENO

With SPF 50 and nourishing oat essence, this little water-resistant sunscreen balm is handy for getting spots like your ears and neck. It will also save your skin on those days you’re underneath the sun’s rays longer than you planned—throw one in every bag you own.

4. Best spray sunscreen:

BEAUTYCOUNTER Countersun Mineral Sunscreen Mist SPF 30

BEAUTYCOUNTER Countersun Mineral Sunscreen Mist SPF 30
Courtesy of BEAUTYCOUNTER

When you’re in a hurry, nothing beats the ease of a continuous-spray bottle. Unlike sport-style sprays that go on clear, this one does apply white so you’ll still need to give it a good rub, but that’s also how you’ll know you didn’t miss a spot later on.

5. Best for sensitive skin:

SHISEIDO Ultimate Sun Protection Lotion WetForce for Sensitive Skin and Children SPF 50+ Sunscreen

SHISEIDO Ultimate Sun Protection Lotion WetForce for Sensitive Skin and Children SPF 50+ Sunscreen
Courtesy of SHISEIDO

If you’d qualify your skin as “sensitive skin not unlike a baby’s,” this is the sunscreen for you. Even better, the technology makes it more effective—not less—when exposed to water or sweat, so it’s particularly safe for hot days spent outside or at the pool.

6. Best for oily skin:

TATCHA Silken Pore Perfecting Sunscreen

TATCHA Silken Pore Perfecting Sunscreen
Courtesy of TATCHA

With its lightweight texture and matte finish, think of this tube as a makeup primer that happens to be a sunscreen. And because it’s Tatcha, you can also count on bonus skin-loving ingredients like antioxidant-rich loquat leaf extract and Japanese wild rose to refine texture.

7. Best for dry skin:

PAULA’S CHOICE Redness Relief SPF 30 Mineral Moisturizer for Normal to Dry Skin

PAULA’S CHOICE Redness Relief SPF 30 Mineral Moisturizer for Normal to Dry Skin
Courtesy of PAULA’S CHOICE

If the reason you avoid applying sunscreen is that it irritates your already irritated skin, you officially no longer have an excuse. This hydrating, redness-reducing formula has a cushiony texture and emollient ingredients to soothe stressed skin, all while providing SPF 30 protection.

8. Best scalp sunscreen:

SUPERGOOP! Poof 100% Mineral Part Powder SPF 35

SUPERGOOP! Poof 100% Mineral Part Powder SPF 35
Courtesy of SUPERGOOP!

Any dermatologist will tell you one of the most frequently missed areas when it comes to sunscreen is the scalp. This genius powder is spritzed directly onto the scalp and massaged in like dry shampoo, so you get a nice little hair zhuzh along with your sun protection.

9. Best scented sunscreen:

COOLA Mineral Body Organic Sunscreen Lotion SPF 30 - Tropical Coconut

COOLA Mineral Body Organic Sunscreen Lotion SPF 30 - Tropical Coconut
Courtesy of COOLA

This sheer sunscreen is as good as any you’ll find, and it has a yummy coconut fragrance that makes you feel like you’re at the beach—even if you’re just walking the dog.

10. Best tinted sunscreen:

DRUNK ELEPHANT Umbra Tinte™ Physical Daily Defense SPF 30

DRUNK ELEPHANT Umbra Tinte™ Physical Daily Defense SPF 30
Courtesy of DRUNK ELEPHANT

Sunscreen technology has come leaps and bounds in the last few years, but those with darker skin tones may still see a white cast with many mineral options. Drunk Elephant offers their best-selling sunblock in a tinted version that blends to match a number of skin tones and leaves a hint of a glow (if you’re more fair, you may prefer their non-tinted version).

11. Best skincare-sunscreen hybrid:

KINSHIP Self Reflect Probiotic Moisturizing Sunscreen Zinc Oxide SPF 32

KINSHIP Self Reflect Probiotic Moisturizing Sunscreen Zinc Oxide SPF 32
Courtesy of KINSHIP

Many formulas on this list offer some degree of skincare benefits, but Kinship takes it to the next level. They pack in plant-based probiotics to support a healthy skin barrier, as well as soothing turmeric. And did we mention it smells like vanilla?

12. Best non-greasy:

NEUTROGENA Sheer Zinc Dry-Touch Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 50

NEUTROGENA Sheer Zinc Dry-Touch Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 50
Courtesy of NEUTROGENA

Neutrogena is practically synonymous with sun protection, and now they’ve made a great mineral formulation for those who want to wear sunscreen, without feeling like they’re wearing sunscreen. Plus, it’s oil-free, non-comedogenic, and is water-resistant for up to 80 minutes.

13. Best high SPF:

KIEHL’S Super Fluid Daily UV Mineral Defense

KIEHL’S Super Fluid Daily UV Mineral Defense
Courtesy of KIEHL’S

One issue with mineral formulas is that they become more opaque as the sun protection factor climbs, while chemical sunscreens can remain transparent. But magically, Kiehl’s made one that’s SPF 50+ and still fairly translucent (the barely-there tint helps).

14. Best bronzing:

PACIFICA Mineral Bronzing Face Shade Coconut Glow

PACIFICA Mineral Bronzing Face Shade Coconut Glow
Courtesy of PACIFICA

Two-in-one alert! By combining bronzer with SPF, you kill two summer-beauty steps with one stone—and avoid the dreaded white cast altogether. Plus, it has aloe vera and coconut probiotic blended right in.

15. Best anti-aging sunscreen:

KATE SOMERVILLE Daily Deflector™ Mineral Face Sunscreen

KATE SOMERVILLE Daily Deflector™ Mineral Face Sunscreen
Courtesy of KATE SOMERVILLE

We can always count on Kate Somerville for the skincare benefits we didn’t know we needed, and sunscreen is no exception. With a solid SPF 40, ceramide complex to strengthen skin, and vitamin E to nourish, it’s the perfect addition to any anti-aging routine.

16. Best highlighting SPF:

VOLITION BEAUTY Mineral Prismatic Luminizing Shield SPF 35

VOLITION BEAUTY Mineral Prismatic Luminizing Shield SPF 35
Courtesy of VOLITION BEAUTY

Like the bronzer, this formula aims to avoid leaving a cast by replacing it with something else—in this case, a gorgeous pearlescent finish. Kiwi fruit water also helps reduce the appearance of age spots, making it ideal for evening out skin tone in the short term and over time.

Want to try summer beauty products tailored to you with the IPSY Glam Bag? Take our Beauty Quiz now to get started. Already an Ipster? Refer your friends to earn points, which you can use toward products. Either way, don’t forget to check us out on Instagram and Twitter @IPSY.

Like this article? Share it with your friends by clicking the icons below!

About the author
lindy-segal-headshot
Lindy Segal
Lindy is a contributor at IPSY, a beauty and lifestyle writer, and Real Housewives aficionado. She was an editor at People and Glamour, and her freelance work has appeared in Harper’s Bazaar, Who What Wear, and Cosmopolitan, among other publications.
Share Article
Article Last Updated June 28, 2021 12:00 AM