Skip to content

The 11 Best Mineral Sunscreens For Your Face — Options For Every Skin Tone

Alexandra Engler
mbg Beauty Director
By Alexandra Engler
mbg Beauty Director
Alexandra Engler is the Beauty Director. Previously she worked at Harper's Bazaar, Marie Claire, SELF, and Cosmopolitan; her byline has appeared in Esquire, Sports Illustrated, and Allure.com.
Last updated on June 30, 2022
Our editors have independently chosen the products listed on this page. If you purchase something mentioned in this article, we may earn a small commission.

Let's not waste any time: Mineral sunscreens are a subcategory of sun care that only uses zinc oxide and titanium dioxide as their active ingredients. These are also known as physical blockers as they manually provide a coat of protection against the sun for your skin (rays literally bounce off of them), while chemical blockers absorb the UV rays and turn them into heat. 

Clean and natural beauty enthusiasts love mineral SPFs as they are shown to be safer for the skin and environment. But they come with drawbacks, one important one: wearability. Because of the thicker nature, they don't rub in as easily, and some leave a white cast (especially true on darker skin). But as clean and natural skin care, in general, has become more technical and sophisticated, so has the formulas: They use emollients to help the formula smooth out, color-correcting tints to help blend in, and so on. 

Now that you're up-to-speed we can dive into our favorites.

How we picked

Mineral actives

On this list you’ll only find options that use zinc oxide and titanium dioxide as their primary sun blockers. You might have guessed that from the article title, huh?

Clean, skin-supporting ingredients

The rest of the formulas need to be top-notch, too. These use hydrating botanicals and smart synthetics to amp up the sensorial appeal and benefits.

Variety

We chose options that could fit a range of skin tones and types. We all have unique needs, but we all need sunscreen.

Expert & review recommended

These options have been tested by members of the beauty team, recommended by trusted sources, come highly praised by real users, or all three!

Best mineral sunscreens for the face

Best tinted, medium to dark: Unsun Cosmetics Mineral Tinted Face Sunscreen

Unsun Cosmetics Mineral Tinted Face Sunscreen
VIEW ON Amazon | $29VIEW ON Credo | $29VIEW ON Naked Poppy | $29

Pros

  • Doubles as makeup
  • Great for dry skin

Cons

  • Slightly oily texture
Considerations: : Vegan, Cruelty-free, UVA/UVB protection, Tinted, Travel-friendly

An award-winning sunscreen with a dedicated following, this face cream comes in two tints: fair to medium and medium to dark. The formulas blend in effortlessly (for proof, peek at the brand's photo evidence). It can act as a primer under makeup or wear it all on its own for a more natural look—it will help smooth texture and minimize skin regardless.

Best tinted, light to medium: Suntegrity 5-In-1 Tinted Sunscreen Moisturizer,

Suntegrity 5-In-1 Tinted Sunscreen Moisturizer,
VIEW ON Amazon | $45VIEW ON Credo | $45

Pros

  • Loaded with skin-loving ingredients

Cons

  • Not a very diverse shade range
Considerations: : Vegan, Cruelty-free, UVA/UVB protection, Tinted, Travel-friendly

This fan fave contains certified organic aloe vera, jojoba, sunflower, pomegranate, cucumber, and green tea to help provide hydration and antioxidants (which can help improve sun protection). It's also tinted, to mask the white cast, and comes in four shades.

Best daily: Versed Skin Guards Up daily Mineral Sunscreen SPF 35

Versed Skin Guards Up daily Mineral Sunscreen SPF 35
VIEW ON Versed | $25VIEW ON Target | $25

Pros

  • Peach undertones for more universal wearability

Cons

  • Some complaints of pilling
Considerations: : Vegan, Cruelty-free, UVA/UVB protection, Travel-friendly

This sunscreen combines physical blockers with a host of other good-for-you ingredients, like sea fennel extract and moringa seed extract. These can help protect the skin against other environmental aggressors like pollution, smoke, and free radical damage. (While sun damage is one of the largest causes of premature aging, it's not the only). It's also a peach hue: This acts as a more universal undertone to help blend the product in easier—rather than a totally white formula.

Best for oily skin: Ren Clean Skincare Clean Screen Mattifying Face Sunscreen SPF 30

Ren Clean Skincare Clean Screen Mattifying Face Sunscreen SPF 30
VIEW ON Ren Skin Care | $40VIEW ON Sephora | $40

Pros

  • Keeps that midday shine at bay

Cons

  • Complaints of a white cast
Considerations: : Vegan, Cruelty-free, UVA/UVB protection, Travel-friendly

Along with the zinc oxide, this contains plenty of antioxidants (primarily from yellow passionfruit seed extract) to help your skin deal with free radicals and other environmental aggressors. But the star of the show is the rice starch, which is excellent at absorbing oil, making this option perfect for acne- and sebum-prone skin.

Best for dry skin: Biossance Squalane Zinc Sheer Mineral Sunscreen

Biossance Squalane Zinc Sheer Mineral Sunscreen
VIEW ON Biossance | $42VIEW ON Sephora | $42

Pros

  • Great for hands, neck & face

Cons

  • Pricey
Considerations: : Vegan, Cruelty-free, UVA/UVB protection, Travel-friendly

Squalane is an amazing ingredient to look for if you have dry skin, as the natural oil is able to help improve water retention and nurture the skin barrier. This blend also uses glycerin and water lily extract for an extra burst of moisture and antioxidants. Not only is this a great option for daily wear on your face, but also your chest and hands as those areas tend to need a bit more hydration. And this non-nano zinc lotion rubs in fairly sheer on many skin tones (it might take a few passes).

Best for sensitive skin: Thrive Natural Care Daily Sunscreen For Sensitive Skin

Thrive Natural Care Daily Sunscreen For Sensitive Skin
VIEW ON Amazon | $27

Pros

  • Fragrance free
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Some reports of pilling
Considerations: : Vegan, Cruelty-free, UVA/UVB protection, Travel-friendly

This effortlessly light face lotion is soothing for all types of skin—yes even those who are easily irritated. It uses a trio of active botanical ingredients (pentavitin, wakame kelp & tazman pepper) to reinforce your skin’s natural defense properties and nurture the barrier. 

Best for breaking a sweat: Juice Beauty SPF 30 Sport Sunscreen

Juice Beauty SPF 30 Sport Sunscreen
VIEW ON Amazon | $16VIEW ON Credo | $18VIEW ON Juice Beauty | $18

Pros

  • Water-resistant
  • Organic ingredients

Cons

  • Thicker consistency
Considerations: : Vegan, Cruelty-free, UVA/UVB protection, Travel-friendly

This option is made with 20% zinc oxide and then is buffered with coconut oil, jojoba oil, and aloe vera to help smooth the consistency and (bonus!) hydrate your face. It’s also formulated with vitamin C to amp up the antioxidant power, and better care for your skin in the sun. Use this one for outdoor play, like on runs, outdoor workouts, or while on the beach, as it is water resistant for up to 80 minutes and, therefore, better withstands a good sweat. 



Best for a beach day: Thinksport Everyday Face Sunscreen

Thinksport Everyday Face Sunscreen
VIEW ON Target | $13.69VIEW ON Think | $15.49

Pros:

  • Athletes swear by this

Cons:

  • Goes on thick
Considerations: : Vegan, Cruelty-free, UVA/UVB protection, Travel-friendly

Top rated by the EWG for a decade and running, this lotion is for your longer outdoor days (think a long day at the beach, hiking, tennis, and so on). It's water-resistant for up to 80 minutes and fully coats any area for ultimate protection. Perhaps not what you'll use every morning on your way to errands, but toss this in your beach tote when you know you’ll be out in the sun for a while.



Best texture: Eleven By Venus Williams Unrivaled Sun Serum

Eleven By Venus Williams Unrivaled Sun Serum
VIEW ON Credo | $50VIEW ON Amazon | $50VIEW ON Eleven | https://elevenbyvenuswilliams.com/products/unrivaled-sun-serum-spf-35

Pros

  • No white cast
  • Feels amazing to apply

Cons

  • Pricey
Considerations: : Vegan, Cruelty-free, UVA/UVB protection, Travel-friendly

Sun screen serums are here to save the folks who hate goopy textures. And this sophisticated option is the best-of-the-best. The sheer zinc formula glides on skin, imparting antioxidant power and moisture, without leaving any visible residue. And the finish is a soft, demi-matte sheen that looks radiant on its own, or doubles as a solid primer. 

Best splurge: Le Prunier Plumscreen SPF 31

Le Prunier Plumscreen SPF 31
VIEW ON Credo | $78VIEW ON The Detox Market | $78

Pros

  • Lot’s of antioxidant-rich ingredients

Cons

  • Pricey
Considerations: : Vegan, Cruelty-free, UVA/UVB protection, Travel-friendly

This number is a sensorial delight — it softly blankets the skin in a cushiony layer of hydration and protection. It uses the brand’s antioxidant-rich plum extract complex that helps neutralize free radicals triggered by UV exposure, helps shield the skin from pollution, and even offers some blue light protection. 

Best stick: Earth Mama Organics Lady Face® Tinted Mineral Sunscreen Face Stick SPF 40

Earth Mama Organics Lady Face® Tinted Mineral Sunscreen Face Stick SPF 40
VIEW ON Amazon | $14.99

Pros

  • On-the-go
  • Organic ingredients

Cons

  • Thick texture
Considerations: : Vegan, Cruelty-free, UVA/UVB protection, Tinted, Travel-friendly

Here, we have an easy on-the-go option for reapplying midday. Remember: we need to be applying SPF regularly, especially if we are spending time outdoors. This comes in two shades that can blend into several skin tone varieties (check out photos on the website to see the blend-ability). A bonus: Can double as a concealer touch-up throughout the day. 

mbg’s review process

At mbg, high standards are earned—and there are no shortcuts. Our beauty editors stay up to date on the latest ingredient research and innovation. It's a dynamic, continuously evolving space, and it's important we look into the science so we can make informed choices about which formulas earn our stamp of approval (figuratively speaking).

Our high standards also come from testing products—many, many products. Our editors and writers rigorously test and research the products featured in our roundups to offer you the best, most informed recommendations. When we write reviews, you can trust we spend quality time with the formulas: We don't simply rave about products we've slathered on the back of our hand. We endorse products we've tried and loved. 

Learn more about our testing process and clean beauty standards here

The takeaway

You need to protect your skin daily—and you especially need to protect your face daily, as it has the most exposure to the sun, pollution, and so on. These mineral face sunscreens can help block the damage of the UV rays, while buffering against other environmental stressors. For the best body options, check out our favorite mineral sunscreens for all over

Heal Your Skin.

Receive your FREE Doctor-Approved Beauty Guide

Alexandra Engler
Alexandra Engler
mbg Beauty Director

Alexandra Engler is the Beauty Director at mindbodygreen. She received her journalism degree from Marquette University, graduating first in the department. She has worked at many top publications and brands including Harper's Bazaar, Marie Claire, SELF, and Cosmopolitan; her byline has appeared in Esquire, Sports Illustrated, and Allure.com. In her current role, she covers all the latest trends and updates in the clean and natural beauty space, as well as travel, financial wellness, and parenting. She has reported on the intricacies of product formulations, the diversification of the beauty industry, and and in-depth look on how to treat acne from the inside, out (after a decade-long struggle with the skin condition herself). She lives in Brooklyn, New York.