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The 10 Best Moisturizers With SPF + What To Look For

Hannah Frye
Author: Expert reviewer:
August 22, 2023
Hannah Frye
Assistant Beauty & Health Editor
By Hannah Frye
Assistant Beauty & Health Editor
Hannah Frye is the Assistant Beauty Editor at mindbodygreen. She has a B.S. in journalism and a minor in women’s, gender, and queer studies from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Hannah has written across lifestyle sections including health, wellness, sustainability, personal development, and more.
Apple Bodemer, M.D.
Expert review by
Apple Bodemer, M.D.
Dermatologist
Dr. Apple Bodemer is board certified in both Dermatology and Integrative Medicine. She is an associate professor of dermatology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health, and sits on the editorial board of the Journal of Integrative Dermatology.
best moisturizer with spf | woman putting on sunscreen
Image by mbg creative
August 22, 2023
We carefully vet all products and services featured on mindbodygreen using our commerce guidelines. Our selections are never influenced by the commissions earned from our links.

If I was stranded on a desert island and I could only bring one skin care product, it would be a moisturizer with SPF without a doubt—and I think that should be your pick too. 

While the short-term benefit of avoiding an uncomfortable burn should be reason enough to prioritize SPF, there are plenty of other reasons to keep it on hand, from preventing skin cancer to easing fine lines and wrinkles to harnessing an even complexion, and the list goes on. 

Anyone who says they don't like the feeling of sunscreen probably hasn't tried the modern formulas of today. To come, a carefully curated list of the very best moisturizers with SPF and how to pick one you'll actually love. 

The importance of SPF

Some folks will argue that you should avoid the sun at all costs in the name of skin health, but not even dermatologists expect or wish that behavior on everyone. 

As board-certified dermatologist Rebecca Marcus, M.D., FAAD, previously stated, "Avoiding sun exposure altogether would cause modifications to lifestyle that might impact mental health."

However, that doesn't change the fact that UV radiation is a proven human carcinogen1. Knowing this, sunscreen is pretty much the perfect middle ground that allows you to spend time in the sun with added protection. 

And last but not least, 80% of visible signs of skin aging can be attributed to sun damage2. So if you want to stay looking as fresh and youthful as you feel, don't skip SPF. For a list of the best moisturizers with SPF you'll be happy to commit to, keep reading. 

mbg's picks for the best moisturizers with SPF for 2023

Recommended by dermatologists: EltaMD UV Clear Tinted Broad-Spectrum SPF 46

Pro

  • Tint minimizes white cast
  • Fragrance-free

Con

  • Not super hydrating when used alone

Price:

$43

Key ingredients:

Hyaluronic acidNiacinamideLactic acidZinc oxide

SPF:

46

Best for:

Sensitive skinAcne-prone skinOily skinCombination skin

Dermatologists everywhere love this sunscreen, and I can see why. The simple yet elevated formula contains a decent dose of SPF in addition to skin-supporting ingredients like niacinamide, hyaluronic acid, and lactic acid. The fact that it comes in both a clear and tinted version is all the more reason to love it. And don't be fooled, the tint is not a foundation-like hue, it simply helps to eliminate the white cast.


What our tester says:

When my skin feels sensitized or irritated, I always come back to this sunscreen. While fragrances and natural extracts are normally fine, my skin craves this simple lotion whenever I'm struggling with any kind of reaction. It goes on smooth, never breaks me out, and the light tint makes my skin look just a bit more balanced.

Best with SPF 50: ColoreScience Total Protection No-Show Mineral Sunscreen SPF 50

Pro

  • No white cast
  • Water & sweat resistant for 40 minutes

Con

  • Liquidy formula may not be for everyone

Price:

$45

Key ingredients:

Zinc oxideBisabololAllantoinMushroom extractSunflower extract

SPF:

50

Best for:

Dry skinAcne-prone skinOily skinCombination skinAging skin

With this option you get protection from zinc oxide, without the pasty hue, which is an impressive feat for such a high SPF. The formula comes out liquidy and glides on smooth, feeling weightless once applied.

What our tester says:

I'm a diligent advocate for the sunscreen wardrobe, and this SPF 50 is my holy grail. At first I thought the "invisible" claims were quite risky, but I must say this SPF is the most transparent mineral SPF 50 formula I've used to date. The additions of bisabool for skin-soothing and allantoin to ease inflammation make it even more lovable.

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Best for oily skin: Supergoop Mineral Mattescreen SPF 40

Pro

  • Mattifies the skin
  • Zero pore-clogging ingredients

Price:

$38

Key ingredients:

Zinc oxideTitanium dioxideBamboo extractWild butterfly ginger extract

SPF:

40

Best for:

Oily skinCombination skin

For oily and acne-prone skin types, SPF is a common sore subject. Many formulas are rich with oils, contain pore-clogging ingredients, or leave behind a greasy residue—if this sounds familiar, you should try this one by Supergoop. The finish is (as you might guess) more mattifying than a classic SPF, functioning as a primer as well.


What reviewers say:

Looking through the reviews for this product showed me one thing: It's a great formula for oily and acne-prone skin types, but not so much for the others. Anyone who reaches for blotting papers often or has skin sensitive to breakouts tends to rave about its reliability, but those with dry or combination skin say it's not hydrating enough. If you fall into the latter categories, opt for a different product.

Best for dry skin: Le Prunier Plumscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 31

Pro

  • Luxurious formula
  • Deeply hydrates

Con

  • Pricey

Price:

$78

Key ingredients:

Zinc oxidePlum oil

SPF:

31

Best for:

Dry skinSensitive skinAcne-prone skinCombination skinAging skin

This SPF and moisturizer duo doesn't compromise on quality, or protection. Accompanying zinc oxide SPF 31 you have Le Prunier's classic plum oil. This extract provides the skin with deep nourishment, antioxidant protection, skin barrier support, and more. While $78 is a steep price for sunscreen, this formula is more than just SPF, it's a skin treatment, hydrator, protector, and enhancer all in one. It's no wonder the before and after images are so shocking.


What our tester says:

"A cushiony delight! This plush sunscreen has the softest texture that melts into skin, and feels amazing all day. I have sensitive skin, and found this to be very soothing—but if you have oil-prone skin, it’s non comedogenic. Not for nothing, but I know that it’s the go-to sunscreen for several beauty insiders." — mbg beauty director Alexandra Engler

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Best for combination & acne-prone skin: True Botanicals Skin Barrier Sun Shield SPF 30

Pro

  • Loaded with antioxidants
  • Contains zero pore-clogging ingredients

Con

  • Pricey

Price:

$65

Key ingredients:

Zinc oxideChebulaAstaxanthinGreen tea extractSea buckthorn oil

SPF:

30

Best for:

Dry skinAcne-prone skinOily skinCombination skinAging skin

Combination skin can be difficult to manage, given that your complexion argues over more and less moisture daily. Luckily, this SPF is one product that's sure to please all of your skin needs, regardless of the day. Plus, it's free from common pore-cloggers found in many sunscreen formulas. In fact, clinical studies showed that 94% of subjects did not experience any breakouts, irritation or sensitivity when using this product. 


What our tester says:

"I have textbook combination skin, that gets super finicky in the summer, and this sunscreen beautifully mattifies my shine while keeping drier spots dewy. It’s magic! Don’t fear the peachy tint: It melts beautifully into the skin without a trace of white cast," -Jamie Schneider, mbg Beauty and Wellness Editor

Best for anti-aging: Dr. Dennis Gross All-Physical Lightweight Wrinkle Defense Broad Spectrum Sunscreen SPF 30

Pro

  • Antioxidant-rich
  • Minimal white cast

Cons

  • Not the best for acne-prone skin

Price:

$42

Key ingredients:

Zinc oxideSea buckthorn oilLingonberry extract

SPF:

30

Best for:

Dry skinSensitive skinAging skin

This formula has a long list of antioxidants, all of which help to protect from free radical damage. A few notable ones include sea buckthorn extract, lingonberry extract, vitamin E, and aloe vera. The formula is soothing and safe for sensitive skin types, but is particularly beneficial for those with fine lines and wrinkles as the more antioxidants, the better.

What reviewers say:

This is another one of those products that's great for one skin type, but not suited for the other. If you have aging skin or your skin runs dry, this formula will be a great fit. Reviewers with acne-prone and oily skin didn't love this one, so go for another option if that's your skin type.

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Best for men: Holifrog Solar Daily Mineral Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 30

Pro

  • Super lightweight
  • Zero pore-clogging ingredients

Con

  • Some may dislike the naturally sweet, diluted scent

Price:

$42

Key ingredients:

Zinc oxideKakadu Plum oilAloeCoconut waterWatermelon seed oil

SPF:

30

Best for:

Dry skinSensitive skinAcne-prone skinOily skinCombination skinAging skin

Let's be clear: Sun cancer does not discriminate between sex nor gender, so SPF is essential for everyone. That being said, some folks prefer a lightweight, user-friendly sunscreen that's simply uncomplicated—this is that sunscreen. Holifrog added antioxidant-rich oils as well as soothing extracts to this formula, making it an SPF that works overtime. There's no gross sunscreen scent, either. Instead, you're met with a super faint sweet fragrance from the natural extracts.


What our tester says:

"I’m truly obsessed with this sunscreen. It feels so breathable on my skin, and it leaves zero white cast on my skin tone. The texture honestly feels more like a moisturizer than a sunscreen, which is a total win for sunscreen standards. While I am loyal to a proper moisturizer, when it’s warm out I can layer it on top of a hydrating serum and call it a day. I’m trying to convince my partner to commit to sunscreen (it’s not going well), but I think I may sway him with this lightweight option," Schneider says.

Best tinted: Saie Beauty Slip Tint Dewy Tinted Moisturizer SPF 35 Sunscreen

Pro

  • Doubles as light coverage makeup
  • Inclusive shade range

Con

  • May not be fit for super oily skin types

Price:

$36

Key ingredients:

Zinc oxidePansy flower extractLicorice root extractGrapeseed oil

SPF:

35

Best for:

Dry skinCombination skinAging skin

Many tinted sunscreens and skin tints are so tinted that you only want to apply a pea-sized amount to the whole face which isn't enough SPF to get you through the day. With this tint, you can actually apply two finger lengths without the coverage being overwhelming. Pop some concealer on your dark spots and under eyes and you're ready for the day with a fresh face.


What our reviewer says:

My skin tends to be on the dry side, so I'm obsessed with this tint. The dew it leaves on my cheeks is irreplaceable, and I know the ingredient list is only nourishing my skin. Folks who are prone to an oily T-zone may want to opt for another formula, but combination and dry skin types will adore this tint.

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Best with SPF 30: Saint Jane Beauty Luxury Sun Ritual Pore Smoothing Sunscreen SPF 30

Pro

  • Minimizes appearance of pores
  • Deeply hydrating

Con

  • Not the best for acne-prone skin

Price:

$36

Key ingredients:

Zinc oxideGreen tea extractJasmineDesert rose

SPF:

30

Best for:

Dry skinOily skinAging skin

Anyone concerned with enlarged pores will know that SPF formulas often accentuate that feature, hence why this pore-smoothing formula is such a rare find. With floral extracts from desert rose, hibiscus, and jasmine, the antioxidant-boosting formula protects the skin while it smoothes.


What our reviewer says:

Here you have it folks: A pore-smoothing primer and SPF in one smoothing step. This formula makes my skin feel as soft as a silk pillow every time and actually helps my makeup look airbrushed all day long. Given the luxurious formula, I honestly expected it to be more expensive.

Best for sensitive skin: Kosas DreamBeam SPF 40 PA++++

Pro

  • Zero pore-clogging ingredients
  • Safe for sensitive skin
  • Feels comfortable on the skin

Con

  • Some reviewers complain of the bronze tint

Price:

$40

Key ingredients:

Hyaluronic acidZinc oxideAllantoinCeramidesPeptides

SPF:

40

Best for:

Dry skinSensitive skinAcne-prone skinOily skinCombination skinAging skin

There's no other way to describe this sunscreen other than comfortable. In fact, it's so comfortable I was actually shocked to find out it had a full SPF 40 inside, as it mimics the feeling of an SPF 10 or 15 moisturizer. While some reviewers prefer a clear SPF, I can't get enough of the bronze tint. Plus, the ingredient list is free from irritants and packed with hydrators, so it's a product made for everybody.


What our reviewer says:

"While zinc oxide is notoriously difficult to blend, this formula comes with a peachy-pink hue to help neutralize the cast. And thanks to ceramides, peptides, hyaluronic acid, and allantoin, it doesn’t just sit well under makeup—it actually enhances it by leaving behind a dewy, plump film over your pores. From a skin care-first makeup brand like Kosas, I would expect nothing less. Is $40 a bit pricey for a sunscreen? Perhaps, but if you’ve yet to find a formula you’ll actually commit to, I’d wager this one will make you genuinely excited to slather on," - Schneider says.

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How we chose

Options for all

We get that sunscreen is a personal matter, so we selected a variety of formulas. In our list, there's a range of moisturizer options for different skin types, skin concerns, skin tones, and sensorial preferences.

Affordability & accessibility

Sunscreen is important, and it should be accessible to everyone. In our list you'll find a wide price range with luxury and budget-friendly options, some of which can even be ordered on Amazon should you need them ASAP and don't have access to a beauty store.

Clean ingredients

As always, we took a close look at the ingredient lists for these sunscreen products. Not only do they contain clean, natural-leaning ingredients, but they also provide more benefit to your skin that just sun protection alone.

Transparently tested

We tried nearly every single sunscreen product listed here. When that wasn't possible, we relied on authenticated customer reviews to bring you honest context and feedback so you can shop with confidence.

How to choose to right one for you

When searching for the perfect fit, you should take the following into consideration: 

  • Skin type: Some SPF formulas are super hydrating, while others can help mattify an oily complexion. Some sunscreen moisturizers are great for acne-prone skin, and others not so much. Determine your skin type and skin concerns before shopping for the best result. 
  • Mineral vs. chemical: At mindbodygreen, we tend to reach for mineral sunscreen for a few different reasons. The minerals used (zinc oxide and titanium dioxide) have been deemed safest for your skin and the environment. Additionally, zinc oxide provides a calming effect on the skin, especially for those who are sensitive or acne-prone, making it the best option in our eyes. However, the best sunscreen for you is the one you'll wear!
  • SPF 30 vs. 50: You should have an SPF 50 on hand for those long days in the sun, but SPF 30 is generally fine for day-to-day wear. However, folks who work outside should stick with SPF 50 for the extra protection. Regardless of the SPF you choose, you should aim to reapply every two hours and after getting wet (swimming or sweating).
  • Sensorial experience: In order to truly commit to daily sunscreen, your go-to formula should accommodate your sensorial wishes. Hate oily sunscreen? Opt for a richer cream formula or even a gel. Despise a white cast? Reach for tinted SPF to help cancel out the chalky appearance. Wearing makeup every day? Have a powder SPF in your bag for ease of reapplying. 

How to use moisturizer with SPF in your routine

Once you have your new SPF in hand, remember these tips: 

  1. Build your sunscreen wardrobe: It's important to have different sunscreen options available to you when you need them. To start your SPF wardrobe, slowly collect the following: daily sunscreen with SPF 30, a hard-hitting SPF 50, body sunscreen, spray-on or brush-on face sunscreen for reapplication, scalp sunscreen, and lip SPF. 
  2. Reapply every two hours: This one is no joke, especially if you're spending the day outside. 
  3. Apply your moisturizer with SPF last: In your skin care routine, this is your last step, just before makeup (if you wear it). That means toners, essences, and serums should go on before (if you use them).
  4. Moisturize first, then sunscreen: If you're someone who likes to double-up on hydration, apply your regular moisturizer first, then apply your moisturizer with SPF after. Sunscreen should always be at the end.
  5. Use a nighttime moisturizer: At the risk of sounding obvious, you don't need to wear sunscreen at night. If you use a moisturizer with SPF during the day, we recommend getting a night cream as well.
  6. Start double-cleansing: One of the only downsides of SPF is that it tends to leave a residue that can be difficult to wash off. If this is true for you, try using an oil cleanser before you go in with your normal water-based cleanser for a deeper wash. 

What’s better: mineral or chemical?

The most important thing about sunscreen is that you’re consistent with its use. "The best sunscreen is the sunscreen that you'll actually wear," says holistic esthetician Lesley Thornton. "I don't argue with people about sunscreen types. Do you wear it? Great." While we highlighted mainly mineral options on this list, if you find that chemical varieties work better for your needs, then that’s what you should ultimately use. In fact, there are few options here that use chemical sunscreen ingredients as well.

FAQ

What SPF is for everyday use?

SPF 30 is generally fit for daily use. As most dermatologists preach, "I wholeheartedly endorse daily application of broad-spectrum SPF 30 or higher, with reapplication every two hours, and more frequently when swimming or sweating," Marcus said. If you're spending the entire day outside (camping, hiking, going to the beach, working outside, etc.), opt for SPF 50 instead.

Can you skip moisturizer if you use sunscreen?

This depends on the formula and your skin type. Many sunscreen products are designed to be a 2-in-1 and include both moisturizing ingredients and sun protection (like those above). If you apply only SPF and notice your skin feels dry a few hours later, try layering moisturizer under your sunscreen for more hydration.

Is SPF 70 too much for daily use?

SPF 30 is generally fit for daily use. Marcus recommends daily use of SPF 30 or higher, reapplied every two hours (more often when swimming or sweating). If you're spending the entire day outside (camping, hiking, going to the beach, working outside, etc.), opt for SPF 50 or more instead.

The takeaway

We've said it before and we'll say it again: Sunscreen is essential for daily use, which is why it's worth investing in a formula you love. When selecting your next daily SPF be sure to take your skin type, skin concerns, and sensorial preference into account. Want to learn more about sun care and why it's so important? Here's a full breakdown.

Meet The Experts

Hannah Frye is the Assistant Beauty Editor at mindbodygreen. She has a B.S. in journalism and a minor in women’s, gender, and queer studies from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Hannah has written across lifestyle sections including health, wellness, sustainability, personal development, and more.
Dr. Apple Bodemer is board certified in both Dermatology and Integrative Medicine. She is an associate professor of dermatology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health, and sits on the editorial board of the Journal of Integrative Dermatology.

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