Sunscreen should be applied every day—yes, literally every day—even if you're not going outside, even if you're spending all day watching movies, and especially if you are going to embrace the great outdoors and expose that precious skin to the harsh sun. Okay, I love the sun, she's a great lady, but she does some *stuff* to our skin.
But because life can be complicated enough, why not consolidate steps in your skincare routine by using a sunscreen/moisturizer hybrid? Hydrating formulas give you the benefits of sun protection without the white, streaky aftermath.
Check out a sneak peek of the best moisturizers with SPF here:
- Mineral or chemical SPF: dermatologist and Women's Health advisory board member Mona Gohara, MD, prefers mineral sunscreens over chemical sunscreens because they work for all skin types (even acne-prone or sensitive skin), aren't as irritating, and create a barrier to block UV rays. Mineral sunscreens reflect the sun's rays off the skin but chemical sunscreens absorb them.
- Ingredients: Sunscreen filters like titanium dioxide and zinc oxide are the main players that protect your skin against UV damage, so they're the most important ingredients to look for. "They're the most valuable for skin health and cosmetic benefit, seeing as a majority of the signs of aging come from unprotected UV exposure," Dr. Gohara says.
- Formula: Over everything, you'll want to choose a formula that you'll enjoy wearing. So, maybe a serum or gel is your jam if you have oily skin or like using more lightweight products. If you have dry or sensitive skin, opt for a more traditional cream formula.
- SPF number: Aside from the ingredients, the next-most important thing is to choose a broad spectrum SPF 30 or higher so that the face is protected from all of the sun's rays, says Dr. Gohara.
To get the protective benefits of SPF, you have to make sure you're wearing it correctly: “You need at least a nickel-size drop of sunscreen or SPF moisturizer to cover your face every morning," Dr. Gohara adds.
Here are the 15 best moisturizers with SPF that you won't mind applying every day.
1. La Roche-Posay Toleriane Double Repair Face Moisturizer SPF 30
Have acne-prone skin? Then this moisturizer is for you. "This moisturizer contains thermal spring water to help calm the skin and maintain a healthy microbiome," with its prebiotic blend of ingredients, says dermatologist Joshua Zeichner, MD. Plus, you’ll get just the right amount of SPF to protect your skin.
2. CeraVe Hydrating Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 50 Face
If you're prone to an oily T-zone, this hydrating sunscreen is for you. Ceramides and niacinamide nourish your skin without making it feel greasy, and the mineral SPF ingredients (it contains both titanium dioxide and zinc oxide) keep your skin safe. "It provides broad spectrum UV protection in a formula that contains ceramide to keep the skin barrier strong," Dr. Zeichner adds.
3. Paula’s Choice Essential Glow Moisturizer SPF 30
Whether you're new to adding SPF to your skincare routine or you're a veteran looking to cut your skincare steps down, this moisturizer makes protecting your skin simple. The creamy texture melts into your skin without leaving a greasy feeling behind. "This moisturizer uses mineral protection against UV light along with a blend of antioxidants to neutralize free radical damage," Dr. Zeichner says. "Niacinamide also helps brighten the complexion." Although it's a mineral-based formula, there is no white cast, which creates a smooth canvas for makeup application.
4. Pixi Sun Mist SPF 30
For an easy sunscreen refresh midday, try this sun mist from Pixi. "This broad spectrum spray sunscreen also delivers chamomile extract and aloe for soothing and antioxidant benefits," Dr. Zeichner says. Not only does it provide your skin with a much needed SPF 30 boost, it also contains ingredients to calm and condition your skin. It's the perfect afternoon moisture and sunscreen mist.
5. Saie Slip Tint Dewy Tinted Moisturizer SPF 35
"This product provides both UV protection, cosmetic coverage with a variety of shades, and skin benefits with plumping hyaluronic acid and soothing licorice root extract," Dr. Zeichner explains. If you're looking for a bit of coverage and a dewy finish, this Saie Tinted Moisturizer is the one for you. With sweet pea extract and 100% mineral zinc oxide, this moisturizer is ready to take care of all of your needs. Mineral-based sunscreen tends to create a white cast, but since this is a tinted moisturizer, it blends in with any skin tone.
6. Fenty Skin Hydra Vizor Invisible Moisturizer SPF 30
This oil-free, lightweight moisturizer blends right in so fast you'll forget if you even applied it. It "protects the skin from UV light in a formula that also hydrates and and brightens with a blend of niacinamide, hyaluronic acid, and botanicals," Dr. Zeicher notes.
And if you don't want to listen to WH about wearing sunscreen, maybe you'll take a page out of Rihanna's book: “You gotta protect your skin from the sun no matter what your skin color is," she says on the Fenty site. "If you have discoloration, guess what, you can get that from the sun. I think a lot of people with darker skin tones think because they’re not burning that they don’t need SPF but we can still get sun damage."
7. Dr. Jart+ Cicapair Tiger Grass Color Correcting Treatment SPF 30
This triple threat corrects redness, moisturizes, and protects your skin from UV damage. Centella asiatica (an herb native to Asia) is the hero ingredient that works to protect the skin from environmental stress that can lead to irritated, inflamed skin. It "helps neutralize redness and calms inflammation with tiger grass extract," Dr. Zeichner notes. While the cream goes on green, it quickly turns into a neutral shade to blend into your skin tone for a more even complexion.
Our commerce editor tried this trendy product out. You can read her review here.
8. Glossier Invisible Shield SPF 35
Does your skin start looking greasy at the mere thought of applying sunscreen? This one is for you. "This ultra-light water gel formula contains broad spectrum sunscreen in a hydrating serum that contains fermented yeast to neutralize environmental aggressors," Dr. Zeichner says. The clear, gel formula absorbs fast and blends in without leaving behind any white cast or weighing your skin down. Dare we say it almost even mattifies the skin?
9. Dermalogica Prisma Protect SPF 30
If you love the sun but love your skin more, give this high-tech moisturizer a try. The light activates the moisturizer to engage the intelligent drone technology in the formula to give your skin a subtle glow. You’ll also find sage in the formula that evens and smoothes the skin.
"This broad spectrum sunscreen delivers matcha extract, a potent form of green tea with antioxidant effects to protect against free radical damage," Dr. Zeicher adds.
10. Black Girl Sunscreen SPF 30
Made by Black women for Black women, you can trust that this sunscreen/moisturizer hybrid isn't going to leave any white streaks behind. "It fully rubs in without leaving behind a white cast or an ashy appearance, so it is ideal for those with darker skin types," Dr. Zeichner says. Avocado, jojoba, and sunflower oil all contribute to the rich, hydrating texture that sinks in without clogging pores or leading to breakouts.
11. UnSun Mineral Tinted Face Sunscreen
Specially formulated for those with darker skin tones, this mineral-based moisturizer won't leave a white cast. The tinted sunscreen multitasks by adding protection against harmful rays and color-correcting hyperpigmentation. It "invisibly blends into the skin with a light tint to even skin tone," Dr. Zeichner says. "Shea butter, Vitamin E, and coconut oil hydrate, soften and protect the skin barrier." Nice!
12. Aveeno Absolutely Ageless Daily Moisturizer SPF 30
Most derms recommend a combination of sunscreen and an antioxidant product (to fight aging free radical damage from UV exposure) for the best daily protection. This lightweight lotion has it all in one. It hydrates, has SPF 30, and "the combination of blackberry and dill extracts help even discoloration and brighten the complexion," Dr. Zeichner says.
13. Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Lotion SPF 50
Hate the feeling of thick, greasy sunscreen? Meet the complete opposite. This gel sunscreen hydrates (thanks to hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and vitamin E) and protects (thanks to a combo of proven chemical sunscreen ingredients) all while feeling like nothing on your skin. "Hyaluronic acid acts like a sponge to pull in hydration and moisturize the outer skin layer," Dr. Zeichner explains.
14. Murad Oil And Pore Control Mattifier SPF 45++++
Ever feel like your sunscreen is leaving your skin looking like an oil slick? Meet your new SPF BFF. Not only does it protect your skin from UVA (what causes aging) and UVB (what causes your skin to burn) rays, it also claims to minimize pores by 54 percent and keeps your skin matte for up to 10 hours. That's because it "contains mattifying ingredients to reduce shine along with willowbark to balance oil production," Dr. Zeichner says.
15. L'Oréal Paris RevitaLift Bright Reveal Brightening Day Moisturizer SPF 30
If you're starting to see hyperpigmentation, then you need to up your SPF game. Start with a brightening product like L'Oréal's. This sunscreen lotion contains SPF 30 to stop new dark spots from forming and a combination of glycolic acid, vitamin C, and retinol to treat any existing discoloration and brighten your complexion, Dr. Zeichner says. Plus, "broad spectrum UV filters protect the skin from sunlight," he adds.
Neha Tandon is the senior commerce editor of Women's Health—she's an expert in discovering the best products and services you can buy and giving recommendations. She discovered her love for magazines when as a teen, she started stealing her mother's magazines. Determined to see more women who look like her and her family members on the glossy covers of magazines, she was guided by seasoned editors and mentors to write for brands including New York Magazine, Cosmopolitan, BRIDES, Harper's Bazaar, Business Insider, Byrdie, and Well+Good. When she’s not grilling dermatologists about the latest skincare trends, she’s doing candlelit yoga or watching Humphrey Bogart movies over vegan pizza. Follow her on Instagram.
Addison Aloian (she/her) is an editorial assistant at Women’s Health. When she’s not writing about all things pop culture, health, beauty, and fashion, she loves hitting leg day at the gym, shopping at Trader Joe’s, and watching whichever hockey game is on TV. Her work has also appeared in Allure, StyleCaster, L’Officiel USA, V Magazine, and Modern Luxury Media.