Confused by the types of sunscreens available?

With so many types of sunscreens on the market, it's no wonder we get overwhelmed at the drug store when we go to stock up for summer.

The types of sunscreen you choose is really a matter of personal choice.

You need to decide:

    • What feels best on your skin.

    • Which is easiest to apply and re-apply.

    • What activities are you participating in? (e.g. Running, biking, hiking, swimming, surfing, skiing or sun bathing).

    • Are you using it on your face or body?

Sunscreens are available in many forms including:

  • Gel sunscreen
  • Cream sunscreen
  • Sunscreen lotions
  • Sunscreen wipe
  • Spray sunscreen
  • Colored sunscreen
  • Powder sunscreen

Some people complain that certain types of sunscreens make them break-out, are too oily, cause allergic reactions, dry their skin out or are full of harmful chemicals.

Over the last few years the advancements in many new types of sunscreen have eliminated many of these problems.

We recommend broad spectrum sunscreen with UVA and UVB protection, a SPF rating of 30 or higher and is gentle enough to wear everyday.

If you have sensitive skin:

Look for all natural sunscreen:

  • Paba free sunscreen - most sunscreens are now PABA-free
  • oil-free sunscreen -
  • hypoallergenic, fragrance free sunscreen, chemical free sunscreen
  • mineral based sunscreen - the minerals titanium dioxide and zinc oxide sit on the skin instead of being absorbed into it

You might want to try:

Many parents opt for sunscreens made for sensitive skin to use on their children. For more information about sunscreen for children, click here:

If you're acne-prone:

look for:

  • Light, oil free lotions will not clog pores
  • With chemical sunscreens avobenzone and oxybenzone
  • Non-comedogenic (meaning it won't clog pores) and is fragrance-free

You might want to try:

If you have oily skin, look for:

  • Mineral oil-free sunscreen
  • Non-comedogenic sunscreen
  • Sunscreens that are oil free are usually water or gel based

You might want to try:

Good common sense tips for Acne-prone, oily and sensitive skin:

  • Don't use the same sunscreen meant for your body on your face
  • If you are using a topical acne treatment? Apply it first, wait 20 minutes or so and then apply your sun protection over the top
  • Remember to wash your face before going to bed to prevent pores from clogging

If you’re a swimmer or outdoor sports “person”, look for:

  • Water-resistant or waterproof sun protection
  • The highest SPF you can find ( No sunscreen is 100 % water and sweat proof )
  • Keep away from your eyes
  • Re-apply after you get out of the water or every 2 hours

You might want to try:

If you've got dry skin, look for:

  • Try creams or lotions with extra hydrating ingredients like glycerin and aloe.
  • Avoid sprays and gels with alcohol

You might want to try:

If you want all organic, look for:

  • Products contain herbs, minerals, and plants only
  • Chemical-free

You might want to try:

Also look for:

Which type of sunblock is better: Chemical vs.Physical?

The key to finding the best types of sunscreens for you is to shop around. If you don’t like one product, try another, and another until you find the ones you like.

Read some reviews on all different types of sunscreens here:

Learn some quick facts about sunscreen here:

Find sunscreen brands and sunscreen ratings here:

Learn about the effectiveness of sunscreens and does sunscreen expire?

SPF - The sun protection factor rating system – Explained:

Find tips on how to apply sunscreen properly.

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