sunscreen for face

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There’re more than a few great reasons to switch to a mineral sunscreen, but if you have sensitive, oily or acne-prone skin, then your skin will definitely thank you. The thing is, chemical sunscreens can easily irritate your skin, possibly disrupt your hormones, and are known to kill coral – if they can kill coral, then imagine what they can do to your skin. So, even though there are some chemical sunscreens we like that cause no irritation, this year we’ve decided to make the switch to mineral sunscreens. Here are two good reasons why, and our top five mineral sunscreens.

1. Mineral sunscreen is good for your skin

Mineral sunscreens, which are made from zinc oxide or titanium dioxide, actually do good things for your skin. Zinc, in particular, has a calming and soothing effect on the skin and helps to control oil production, which means that if your skin is often oily, then you’ll definitely notice a decrease in midday shine when you switch to mineral – we definitely did! In contrast, we have found that in our own experience, chemical sunscreens can actually increase oil production for those that are oily-prone. Titanium dioxide is an earth mineral, and its main benefit is that it protects your skin without penetrating your skin at all, whereas chemical sunscreens can often cause skin reactions, especially if you’re acne-prone or have sensitive skin.

2. Mineral sunscreens work faster

Chemical sunscreens, like oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate, homosalate, octocrylene and octinoxate, work by absorbing UV rays whereas mineral sunscreens reflect UV rays. So when you use a chemical sunscreen, you’ll often be told to wait 20 minutes before going into the sun so that the chemical has time to absorb into your skin where it can work. However, mineral sunscreens work immediately, which means there’s no wait time from application to playtime.

Our Top 5 Mineral Sunscreens:

1. REN Clean Skincare Clean Screen Mattifying Face Sunscreen SPF 30, $38

REN Clean Skincare Clean Screen Mattifying Face Sunscreen SPF 30Source: REN Clean Skincare

This mattifying mineral sunscreen is packed with clean, good-for-your-skin ingredients. The formula protects against UV rays and blue light rays with zinc oxide while yellow passionfruit seed extract protects against pollution by bolstering your skin’s internal defense system with antioxidants. Rice Starch controls shine, absorbs oil and minimizes pores. This sunscreen takes a little rubbing in and it does leave a white cast, so we recommend using it every day before foundation. It makes a great base for makeup, and mattifies oily skin like nothing else!

2. Soleil Toujours 100% Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30, $39

Soleil Toujours 100% Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30Source: Soleil Toujours

Our new fave sunscreen, this mineral sunscreen feels like a chemical SPF, in that it blends easily into the skin without leaving any trace. Made with zinc oxide and aloe vera leaf, the formula is hydrating yet controls oil production. It also contains anti-inflammatory and anti-irritant, Mugwort plant extract, which is packed with amino acids and proteins that help reduce redness. The formula also contains Soleil’s EcoSun Complex® that’s packed with red algae, vitamin C ester, vitamin E and bisabolol that helps boost SPF efficacy, prevent loss of firmness, and increase skin smoothness. Green tea leaf extract also helps reduce oxidative stress by fighting cell damage caused by free radicals.

3. EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46, $35

EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46Soleil: EltaMD Skincare

This formula is always recommended to us by derms because it’s amazing for sensitive skin types and those prone to discoloration and breakouts associated with acne and rosacea. Zinc protects, and niacinamide (vitamin B3), hyaluronic acid and lactic acid hydrate and promote the appearance of healthy-looking skin. The lightweight, silky formula sinks into skin quickly and is oil-free, fragrance-free, and non-comedogenic, so it won’t block pores or cause breakouts.

4. Colorescience Sunforgettable® Total Protection™ Brush-On Shield SPF 50, $65

BEST MINERAL SUNSCEENSource: Colorscience

This award-winning SPF and derm-fave is ideal for when you’re on-the-go; the powder formula with a built-in brush that means you can easily apply it on top of your makeup and touch-up with it through the day – after all, you should reapply SPF every two hours when you’re in the sun.

Titanium dioxide and zinc oxide work together to reflect and scatter UV rays while iron oxides provide blue light protection. The hydrating, hyaluronic acid-infused powder also boasts mica, which catches and reflects light for a radiant natural finish. It’s great for topping-up your protection through the day and we love the subtle mattifying effect it has. The subtly-tinted powder comes in four shades from fair to deep.

5. Supergoop Zincscreen 100% Mineral Lotion SPF 40 PA+++, $42

best mineral sunscreenSource: Supergoop

As you probably guessed from the name, Supergoop’s new sunscreen protects with zinc. The lightweight lotion blends easily into the skin and has a subtle tint to it that doesn’t really leave any color residue but helps to balance the formula so that it doesn’t leave behind a white cast. It’s also formulated with winter cherry to protect against pollution and blue light, and blueberry rich in antioxidants that fights aging free radicals. It wears well under makeup and is a great option for oily, combo and acne-prone skin.

Do you guys use sunscreen every day? Let us know in the comments below.