As people who spend a lot of time outside in the sun know, you can never have enough good sunscreen. This list of the best sunscreens for summer is put together with a few guidelines in mind. When choosing the sunscreen that’s best for you, opt for the closest SPF to 50 that you can find. Any higher than 50 doesn’t give your skin additional protection. Even if you have an SPF moisturizer like the Josie Maran argan oil one I use each morning, you still need to put on sunscreen every two hours. These chemicals can be very harmful to your skin if you wear them every day. Also, when possible opt for a lotion over a spray. It’s said they’re more effective. To be honest, I’ll keep a spray on hand for if I’m in a hurry or on the go, but I shouldn’t. I like to bring it on the SUP board as backup on really sunny SUP yoga days.
Best Sunscreens for Summer
Coola has been one of my favorite sunscreens for a few years now, and I was so excited to see that our local HEB started carrying it. In the past, it has been very difficult to find oxybenzone-free sunscreen at any local groceries or pharmacies. Anyway, you can find Coola on their website and sometimes it’s in stock on Amazon if your local stores don’t carry it. I find the spray to be a little greasy and dubious. The lotion takes a while to rub in, but it’s water-resistant and really does the trick.
We picked up a stick of this Headhunter while in Costa Rica, and it’s one of our favorites so far. It’s light brown, so if you put it on your face it just looks like heavy foundation – a nice alternative to the full white face block you’ll get from a zinc sunscreen. My only apprehension is that I tend to rub my nose when I’m surfing, which can rub off the faceblock even though it’s water-resistant.
Manda Naturals is an organic sun paste made from thanaka paste, which comes from the wood of a small tree in Myanmar. Additional organic ingredients include coconut oil, beeswax, shea butter, cocoa butter, cacao powder, cinnamon oil, and non-nano zinc oxide. Manda is free of ingredients like oxybenzone and other chemicals that are harmful for you and the creatures living in the water you swim in.
Alba is one of the more popular earth-friendly sunscreens that you can find at the local grocery store. It’s not as good as Coola in my opinion, but better for you than something like Neutrogena. They have a full line of skin products, of which sunscreen is only a small part. I appreciate that they are a responsible company that tries to reduce their environmental footprint and doesn’t do any animal testing.
Bullfrog is an old faithful for active water lovers. It’s been around forever! Most of the people that I know who use it are men, and fishermen at that. But I find that it’s incredibly effective if you’re going surfing or SUPing, and sometimes it’s the only really good waterproof option at a local gas station/market if you find yourself on the coast and forgot your sunscreen at home.
If you have to wear a sunscreen every day, in the long run it’s better to go for one of the safer ones even if it costs a little more. Many sunscreen chemicals can absorb into your skin and impair your health. The Environmental Working Group has a lot of really great information about safe sunscreens for kids and sports activities. If you want to know more about their recommended sunscreens, you can check their report out here.
You can easily buy one of my favorite sunscreens here:
There are plenty of other really great sunscreen products out there that I haven’t tried yet. Do you have a favorite sunscreen this summer? Let me know why and I’ll check it out!