I tried 15 mineral sunscreens for the face...here are the best.

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I confess, I haven't been a religious user of facial SPF in the past. Most formulas that I tried were heavy, chalky, left a white cast or made my makeup look bad, or my skin look strangely pink. 

This year I was determined to find a non-toxic, mineral facial SPF that I actually enjoyed wearing. To my surprise I found not only one...I found several great options! I am sharing all of the ones I tried, because while they did not all work for me, they might be your perfect fit. 

There are a number of reasons why you might want to choose a mineral sunscreen over a chemical sunscreen. Whether you have sensitive skin, you are avoiding oxybenzone or octinoxate, or you want a reef friendly option I have got you covered. 

Why choose zinc oxide as your active sunblock ingredient? Zinc oxide is broad spectrum - meaning that it protects against both UVA and UVB rays. It is usually not irritating on the skin and is non-toxic. It is preferable to choose a product that is using a non-nano form of zinc oxide. 

Keep in mind, my skin is normal but influenced by the weather. We have very humid weather most of the summer. My skin is light to medium with warm undertones.  Keep in mind I am extremely sensitive to even the most natural of fragrances, so that is always a consideration of mine that may not apply to your tastes. 

Lastly, I would be remiss if I didn't mention the important of just 15-20 minutes of sun exposure daily without sunscreen. Just this little amount of sun on exposed arms and legs is enough for the body to create Vitamin D, which is so necessary for optimal immune and hormone function. 

In this video, I'm sharing in depth why I loved my top 6 choices, scroll down to see all 15!

 

Tinted Sunscreens That I Loved

Beautycounter Dew Skin

Price: $45

SPF: 20, Non-Nano Zinc Oxide 14% (not listed on beautycounter's website, but I found this statistic elsewhere). 

Shade Range: 5 shades. I wear Shade 3. 

What I loved: This is the true definition of a tinted moisturizer - sheer to light coverage that just evens out skin tone. It leaves your skin looking radiant. It can be worn alone or is light enough to support makeup over top if you want more coverage. No white cast. Not chalky. 

What I didn't love: Perhaps a tinge too dewy for my summer weather. I'm not in love with the scent. While scented naturally, it does linger on the face for several hours. It's not strong, but smells mostly sweet with a hint of herbs. 

Marie Veronique Everyday Coverage Tinted Sunscreen

Price: $48

SPF: 30, Non-Nano Zinc Oxide 20%

Shade Range: 3 shades. My shade medium is the darkest. 

What I loved: If you've been googling "Meghan Markle Makeup That Shows Freckles", this is for you. It has the most unique texture and I am obsessed with it. It feels and applies like a cooling, watery serum. It can be worn alone for a light to medium coverage look, or is light enough to support a little makeup over top. This feels like skincare, but looks like a sheer to light foundation.  No white cast. Not chalky. 

What I didn't love: The scent. It is naturally scented and at first whiff, quite strong, but isn't detectable for long on the skin. The scent to me smells of vitamins and robatussin. While I do think those of you with skin tones darker than mine can still wear the shade medium, I would love to see a darker shade added to the range. 

W3LL People Bio Tint

Price: $28.99

SPF: 30, Non-Nano Zinc Oxide 20%

Shade Range: 4 shades. I wear Light. 

What I loved: Affordable. Accessible, as it is in several Target stores across the US. This is a solid medium coverage, no need to wear additional foundation on top of it. No white cast. It's unscented! 

What I didn't love: The formula is a tad thick for my taste, so I thin it with a drop of primer or facial oil typically. Limited shades for darker skin. 

 

**Summary of my favorite tinted options:

Go with the Dew Skin for sheer to light coverage, Marie Veronique for light to medium coverage and W3LL People for medium to near full coverage.

Choose W3LL People if you don't want any aroma coming from your product. 

In terms of the feel of the formula on the skin - choose Marie Veronique for the lightest texture and satin sensation, Dew Skin for a medium texture and dewy sensation, and W3LL People for a thicker texture and more matte finish. 

Untinted Sunscreens That I Loved

Pratima Neem Rose Face Sunscreen

Price: $36

SPF: 30, Non-Nano Zinc Oxide 18.65%

Shade Range: 1 shade - untinted. 

What I loved:  No white cast. Not chalky. Applies like a standard facial moisturizer and leaves a dewy finish. I also love the price point and that Pratima offers a sample pack for $7 of three products of your choice. That $7 can be applied towards your future purchase, too.  I love the the formula is unscented. 

What I didn't love:  The formula is a tad dewy for my skin in the humidity, otherwise I would have definitely purchased a full size for summer. If you have drier skin or live in a drier climate I would 100% recommend this one for you. 

Ursa Major Force Field Daily Defense Lotion

Price: $54

SPF: 18, Non-Nano Zinc Oxide 10%

Shade Range: 1 shade - untinted. 

What I loved:  This applies like if a standard facial moisturizer and a matte primer had a baby. It dries matte, but doesn't leave you feeling tight. It is also not chalky and leaves the perfect texture to apply makeup or to wear alone. I also love that it is unscented and comes in unisex packaging, so that I can even convince my husband to wear it. No white cast. 

What I didn't love: Could be a tad higher SPF. 

 

 

***Summary of my favorite un-tinted options:

Choose Pratima if you have dry to normal skin and / or live in a dry climate. Choose Ursa Major if you have normal to oily skin and / or live in a humid climate. 

SeriouslyFab Zinc It Over

Price: $39

SPF: 25, Non-Nano Zinc Oxide 5%

Shade Range: 1 shade - untinted. 

What I loved:  This product is so unique - a makeup setting spray with SPF! No white cast when sprayed the proper distance away.  Comes in two scented - unscented and tropical floral. 

What I didn't love: Nothing! It's not an everyday product for me, but the uniqueness is astounding. 

Tinted Primers

Coola Unscented Matte Tint Mineral Sunscreen

Price: $36

SPF: 30, Titanium Dioxide - 3.2%, Zinc Oxide - 1.8%. It's unclear if the zinc is non-nano from the packaging and website. 

Shade Range: 1 shade. 

What I loved:  This has a mousse like texture, that applies very nicely. While there is only one shade, I think it would work on most skin tones - except extremely fair skin tones. This acts in my opinion as a primer that just is tinted to avoid a white cast - it doesn't provide any coverage or skin evening in my opinion. It is unscented, which I love. If you are someone who enjoys using a silicone product, you will like this. 

What I didn't love: So. Many. Silicones. I haven't used many silicones on my skin in over 7 years, so feeling silicones on my face felt absolutely bizarre. The percentage of zinc oxide is much lower than the rest of the formulas that I tried. 

MDSolarScience Mineral Tinted Creme

Price: $32

SPF: 30, Titanium Dioxide 2%, Zinc Oxide 17%. It's unclear if this product is non-nano. 

Shade Range: 1 shade. 

What I loved:  This has a liquid-y texture, which I prefer to a thick texture. While there is only one shade, I think it would work on most skin tones - except extremely fair skin tones. This acts in my opinion as a primer that just is tinted to avoid a white cast - it doesn't provide any coverage or skin texture evening in my opinion. It is unscented, which I love. If you are someone who enjoys using a silicone product, you will like this.  This one is nearly identical to the Coola product reviewed above, but it is just a little less silicone-y.

What I didn't love: I wish there was just a teensy bit more coverage to this so that it could be worn on its own. 

Tinted Sunscreens that I didn't love on my face, but you might. 

Badger Tinted Zinc Oxide Sunscreen Cream

Price: $15.99

SPF: 30, Non-Nano Zinc Oxide 18.65%.

Shade Range: 1 shade. 

What I loved:  A very simple ingredient list.  The price point. This is great for using on the body while at the pool or beach, but I did not love it on my face. 

What I didn't love: A pinkish white cast,  but not a true white cast. A tad thick, heavy and tacky for my face. I do use this on my body. 

Beauty By Earth Tinted Facial Sunscreen

Price: $19.99

SPF: 20, Non-Nano Zinc Oxide 11%. 

Shade Range: 1 shade. 

What I loved:  This has a thinner liquid texture and spread nicely. It does provide light coverage. It's easy to purchase from Amazon. 

What I didn't love: It's too strongly scented (naturally) for my taste. 

Juice Beauty Stem Cellular Repair CC Cream

Price: $39

SPF: 30, Non-Nano Zinc Oxide 20%. 

Shade Range: 5 shades. My shade is Warm Glow. 

What I loved:  This product is a true CC cream, with the texture to prove it. This offers absolutely insanely good coverage. This product has the highest coverage of all the products in this review, in my opinion. 

What I didn't love: The scent. While scented naturally, this is too strong and herbal for my taste. 

Raw Elements Tint Formula

Price: $18.99

SPF: 30, Non-Nano Zinc Oxide 23%. 

Shade Range: 1 shade. 

What I loved: I love that while this tinted product is just one shade, it is a darker shade. There are so few natural products that cater to darker skin. I don't think many people with much lighter skin than mine could pull this off on the face. If you have medium skin, give this a try! I also adore the simple, short ingredient list and that it is unscented. 

What I didn't love:  The shade and texture just doesn't quite work for me on my face,  but that being said, I absolutely love this formula and am using this on my body while out enjoying water activities. 

Note: Raw Elements released a daily moisturizer with SPF shortly after I ordered this which may be of consideration for a daily facial SPF product. 

Untinted Sunscreens that I didn't love on my face, but you might. 

Kypris Pot Of Shade

Price: $68

SPF: 30, Non-nano Zinc Oxide 20%. 

Shade Range: 1 shade - untinted. 

What I loved:  If you're in the market for an untinted primer to use under makeup that has extremely clean ingredients, this is it. The scent is a tad vitamin-y. Goes on clear with no white cast on my skin tone. The texture is almost putty like. 

What I didn't love: The price. For $68, it needs to blow my mind. It also felt a tad tacky and itchy on my skin. 

*These clamshell samples were purchased using The Detox Market Sample Program. Highly recommend!*

Suntegrity face sunscreen & primer

Price: $45

SPF: 30, Non-Nano Zinc Oxide 20%.

Shade Range: 1 shade - untinted. 

What I loved:  Suntegrity offers sample tubes of this product for $4.95 so you can try before you buy. I cannot speak to the performance because the scent of this nearly had me keeling over.  If you like the regular Suntegrity formula and wanted to try their primer, this may be a good option for you. 

What I didn't love: The scent is overpowering for me. It smells a bit like Pantene in my opinion. 

Suntegrity 5 in 1 Moisturizing Sunscreen

Price: $45

SPF: 30, Non-Nano Zinc Oxide 20%. 

Shade Range: 4 shades. My shade is Golden Light. 

What I loved:  This product is a standard facial moisturizer texture. It is tinted, but in my opinion, does not offer coverage. It is dewy and does not feel chalky. No white cast. 

What I didn't love: I would like to see a little more coverage from this product. While this one is unscented, after 4-5 hours of wear time it smells like sunscreen on my face.