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The 12 best sunscreen sprays of 2020



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We all know the importance of sunscreens, but messy creams can be a nuisance.

This is where sunscreen spray comes into play.

We learned from dermatologists what to look for in a spray sunscreen and how to use it properly. We also asked which products they trust enough to use themselves.

Here are 1

2 of our most popular dermatologist-approved spray sunscreens!

Sun protection 101

To make sure we got all the details right, we spoke to a handful of dermatologists about what to look for in a spray sunscreen (or really any sunscreen). This is what they said:

Choose a broad-spectrum sunscreen. These products protect against both UV-A (UVA) and UV-B rays.

According to Todd Minars, MD of Minars Dermatology, “UVB is responsible for sunburn, peeling, and elasticity problems.” However, he adds that UVA rays are a long-term problem because they penetrate deeper into the skin than UVB.

Make sure you have a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30. Tsippora Shainhouse, MD, FAAD, of SkinSafe Dermatology and Skin Care, says, “A sun protection factor of 30 means only 1/30 of the UVB rays reach the surface of the skin and, when used correctly, provide 97 percent sun protection.”

She adds that the only real value in a higher SPF sunscreen is that it provides extra protection if you don’t use it properly (tsk, tsk).

Know the pros and cons of mineral and chemical blockers. According to Emmanuel Loucas, MD of the Loucas Dermatology & Laser Center, chemical blockers are great for blocking UVA and UVB rays, but should be “combined with a mineral blocker for optimal protection”.

Zinc and titanium are mineral blockers, although zinc is the most preferred of both. Loucas adds that 100 percent mineral sprays are also less irritating to children’s skin and sensitive skin.

Application is everything. These dermatologists agreed that spray sunscreens can be a little tricky to use. How to do it right:

  1. Spray about 5 cm from the skin and rub it in well. As you do this, watch out for stains such as your hands, the tops of your feet, and under clothing straps (which may adjust as the day progresses).
  2. Do not spray the face directly (especially for children)! Spray the sunscreen on your hands and rub it on your face. Also, pay attention to your ears and scalp.
  3. Reapply at least every 2 hours if necessary.

Here’s how we decided which sunscreens made the cut:

  • SPF. Each sunscreen on the list contains a minimum of SPF 30.
  • Physical or chemical sun protection. Our highest product contains both physical and chemical sun protection.
  • Broad spectrum. All of these products offer broadband protection.

Price key

This price range is calculated based on the product cost per ounce:

$ = under $ 3 an ounce.
$$ = $ 3- $ 4.99 per ounce.
$$$ = over $ 5 an ounce.

SUPERGOOP! Play 100% Mineral Body Mist SPF 50 with Green Tea Extract

This 100 percent mineral sunscreen contains both zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. This makes it a really powerful sunscreen that is great for long, sunny days – especially if you have sensitive skin or children who do it.

It also contains skin soothing ingredients like vitamin C, green tea extract, and mango butter.

Price: $$$

Buy this sunscreen online.

SunBum Mineral SPF 30 sun protection spray

This 100 percent mineral spray consists of zinc oxide as an active ingredient and is therefore child-friendly and sensitive skin.

Because it forms a physical barrier and does not absorb into the skin like chemical sunscreens, it is white in color.

Price: $$

Buy this sunscreen online.

All good SPF 30 Sport Mineral Sunscreen Spray

This All Good mineral sunscreen is literally all good, made with super high quality ingredients and third party tested. It is based on zinc oxide, so it does not absorb into the skin.

Price: $$

Buy this sunscreen online.

Bare Republic Mineral SPF 30 Sport Sunscreen Spray

Another 100 percent mineral sun protection with sun protection through zinc oxide. This one also contains antioxidants like grape, raspberry and carrot seed oils and smells like coconut mango (just don’t eat it).

Price: $

Buy this sunscreen online.

Babo Botanicals Sheer Zinc Continuous Spray Sunscreen SPF 30

This fragrance-free zinc oxide spray is ideal for sensitive skin and young children as it is free from chemical blockers and fragrances. However, it’s strong enough to provide sun protection for the whole family.

Price: $

Buy this sunscreen online.

Banana Boat Ultra Sport Sunscreen Spray SPF 30

This sunscreen is great for sports, but it’s a super powerful chemical sunscreen that is great for anyone who’s spending a day in the sun. Because it is absorbed by the skin, it won’t dissolve in water or if you sweat (but you still have to reapply it to the skin)!

Price: $

Buy this sunscreen online.

Neutrogena Beach Defense Sunscreen Spray SPF 70

Neutrogena Beach Defense is a dermatologist’s favorite. It is a chemical sunscreen that is quickly absorbed by the skin and offers strong protection against sun rays.

You can also purchase a Beach Defense sunscreen stick for easy use on the face.

Price: $

Buy this sunscreen online.

Trader Joe’s Nourish Spray Sunscreen

Trader Joe’s … sunscreen? Yes. And it wasn’t just Dr. Shainhouse recommended it was also a top pick by Consumer Reports in 2019.

This chemical sunscreen is non-comedogenic (which means it won’t clog your pores) and contains some skin foods like aloe and vitamin E.

Price: $

Buy this sunscreen online.

Coppertone Water Babies Lotion Spray SPF 50

This sunscreen is marketed for babies and toddlers, but is a 100 percent chemical option that is free from irritating ingredients and allergens. It also has some soothing aloe and vitamin E.

We promise you won’t turn into a baby using it, but that sounds like the requirement for an adorable family comedy movie.

Price: $

Buy this sunscreen online.

SunBum Original SPF 30 sun protection spray

Unlike the other SunBum product on this list, this product is a 100 percent chemical sunscreen. It’s moisturizing, non-comedogenic, quickly absorbed, and made from hypoallergenic ingredients – perfect for all ages in the sun!

Price: $

Buy this sunscreen online.

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Body Mist Sunscreen SPF 30

This Neutrogena chemical sunscreen is for you when you don’t want to feel like you’re wearing sunscreen. It is light and non-greasy and acts like a body mist.

Price: $

Buy this sunscreen online.


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