tips for finding the best sunscreens for face + body

summer in the south is in full swing. it’s not usually something we look as it generally feels we’re going to melt within seconds of stepping out the door; we either find ourselves aggressively avoiding having to step foot outside or spending hours down at the pool or water parks to try and keep cool.

when it comes to sunscreen, there seems to be a lot of controversy. I googled “sunscreen news” and saw mostly negative headlines saying things like, “are you getting burned by your sunscreen?” and “most sunscreen products don’t even work. everyone has become up in arms over the chemicals in sunscreen and how they are probably causing more instances of skin cancer than overexposure to the sun. it honestly feels hard to keep up anymore – we almost feel like we just have to decide between the lesser of two evils. here are some things I keep in mind when I’m choosing sunscreens.

This post includes affiliate links, meaning, at no cost to you, I will earn commission if you click through and make a purchase. You can visit my replicated Arbonne site at



studies are showing that a majority of common chemicals in sunscreens lead to hormone disruption, increased cancer risk, and skin irritation (ewg / supergoop)  – the big bads being oxybenzone and octinoxate, which is why you should be using sunscreens that use zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, and avobenzone. they have been shown to be safer and they also have more protection against uva rays! (beasley + meyer 2010) and, as always, do what you can to avoid parabens, too.

sun protection factor

here’s a little science lesson for ya – there are two types of uv rays: uva + uvb. sunscreens that contain oxybenzone + octinoxate only protect against uvb rays, leaving uva rays to still do its damage (again, emphasis on why you should use zinc oxide sun screens instead). that’s why it’s important to remain cautious while spending lots of time out in the sun, especially when using higher spf sunscreens – they tend to provide a sense of false hope regarding how much protection you’re actually getting (ewg). enough as it is, sunscreens higher than 50spf only provide a 0.5-1% difference in uv ray protection and typically have to use larger amounts of chemicals to do so (and generally cost more, as well). with that being said, 30-50spf is the “magic range,” according to supergoop. 30spf provides 97% protection while 50spf provides 98%.

recommended products

 – f a c e –

re9 prepwork soft focus veil spa 30. your skin, but better. this breathable, lightweight veil creates a photo-filtered, soft focus effect to blur the look of pores and baby lines. This natural-looking tint – containing 100% mineral-based sunscreen – can be worn alone or under makeup as it blends effortlessly to compliment a spectrum of skin tones, perfecting the indescribable je ne sais quoi glow. perfect if you’re looking for a breathable complexion correcting sunscreen! it’s also free of that sunscreen smell!

re9 advanced restorative cream spf 20 sunscreen. this extra-hydrating cream for drier skin moisturizes deeply, supports collagen and protects skin’s youthful appearance. not particularly the best sun protection on its own, but it pairs so nicely underneath foundations with additional spf coverage if you are looking to doll up in the heat.

– l i p –

coola mineral liplux lipstick spf 30. sometimes I get so preoccupied with my face and body that I completely forget about lips, and I end up regretting it all the next day when I have sunburned lips. the mineral liplux adds a hint of subtle, rosy color using naturally-derived pigments while protecting, nourishing and softening your lips. organic cupuaçu butter and mongongo oil deliver an ultra-creamy texture that smooths and nourishes lips while keeping them hydrated, so they look healthy, plump, and youthful.

– b o d y –

arbonne baby care sunscreen spf 30. don’t let the “baby care” trip you up – this sunscreen is perfectly effective on adults too and is perfect for anyone with sensitive skin. it’s held to the rest of Arbonne’s ingredient standards and is formulated with antioxidants, vitamins and soothing botanicals to help moisturize and protect your skin.

mineral light hydrating sunscreen lotion spf 50. ultra-light, 100% mineral sunscreen for the face and body with broad spectrum SPF 50+ uva/uvb filters and powerful anti-oxidant protection. provides maximum water resistance, long lasting hydration and is perfect for all skin types and tones. suitable for even the most sensitive skin (hypersensitive, allergic and post-procedure) and for all ages.

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