It seems like facial sunscreen and all its recent fancy improvements has been the star of the SPF show for a few years now, which has made sunscreen for your body fall to the wayside. This is kind of ironic, because like most kids, you — or at least your parents — were probably vigilant about ensuring every square inch of you was slathered before going outside. To catch you up to speed, SPF for your body and face are *both* equally as important and now better than ever (read: they actually smell good, have way more benefits than just blocking rays, and often leave no white cast). So, to make sure you're covered year-round, The Zoe Report has rounded up the best sunscreens at Ulta Beauty for every inch of your body, so UV rays can't pull a fast one on you.
But first, you might be wondering if there's even a difference between the sunscreen that goes on your face versus your body — the short answer is yes and no.
Mainly, no, though says Tiffany J. Libby, MD. "The important backbone ingredients in both facial and body sunscreens remain the same i.e. broad-spectrum coverage with physical or chemical blockers with at least SPF 30," she explains in an email to The Zoe Report. "Where they differ is usually in their additives. Facial sunscreens may offer more elegant texture, a tint for extra coverage, or even additional ingredients like niacinamide. They often are formulated to be non-comedogenic as facial pores are more prone to being clogged, which may lead to breakouts."
When it comes to the right ingredients, there are a few essentials Dr. Libby says you can't go without. "The three non-negotiables to look for in an effective sunscreen are: broad-spectrum UVA/UVB coverage, water resistance, and SPF 30 or higher," she explains. "I prefer mineral blockers, which are your titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, which physically reflect the sun's rays."
And for the body? "You really want to make sure that your sunscreen is water resistant — there are two options out there, water-resistant to 40 minutes and alternatively, to 80 minutes. I prefer the latter for extra protection and coverage," she says.
Now that you're in the loop, double check your supply of sunscreen and make sure you're covered from head to toe. If you need to stock up, keep scrolling for some top-rated picks on Ulta Beauty, below.
We only include products that have been independently selected by The Zoe Report's editorial team. However, we may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article.
Best Facial Sunscreens
Infusing your skin with antioxidants is one of the best ways to fight against free radicals, many of which can come from radiation. This sunscreen with nearly 400 five-star reviews features a mix of antioxidant-containing ingredients for your skin (think: red raspberry and meadowfoam seed oils and prickly pear extract) while also giving you water-resistant sun protection. Just don't forget to reapply!
Featuring paeonia albiflora root extract and scutellaria baicalensis extract, this facial sunscreen helps protect the skin while also improving its appearance and minimizing pores. The formula easily blends into your skin so you won't have to vigorously rub away white cast, and it's water-resistant for up to 40 minutes.
This tinted BB cream is great for the days you don't feel like a full face of makeup, but aren't down to step outside bare-faced. Its list of great features is long; not only is it water-resistant for up to 80 minutes, but it blurs imperfections, features rose stem cells for replenishing the skin, and has 900+ five-star reviews — so it's definitely a worthy investment.
Best Body Sunscreens
SPF 50 ensures you have plenty of coverage with this 130+ five-star rated sunscreen. It features vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant, to nourish your skin and fight back against free radicals. This formula is also one of Sun Bum's sunscreens that's approved and recommended by The Skin Cancer Foundation, but the icing on the cake is how *amazing* it smells — like banana smoothie amazing.
Featuring 70 percent organic ingredients, this 180+ five-star reviewed sunscreen is perfect for you if you're conscious of how clean the ingredients in your skincare are. It features the same antioxidant blend as its facial counterpart, and the guava mango scent is a nice touch in helping mentally transport you to the tropics while at home.