Remember when you were a kid and your mom would chase you down the beach to cover you in, what seemed like, an entire bottle of sunscreen? Thick and chalky, it would never quite rub in and it always made our skin greasy (which explains our aversion to the stuff as adults). Luckily, the latest formulas are so lightweight and sheer, it’s hard to believe it’s even sunscreen. Meet our five favorites right now.


A Loose Mineral Powder

Did you know that you’re technically supposed to reapply sunscreen when you’re outside for more than two hours? Trouble is, few of us actually do—which is why we sometimes get burned despite bathing in SPF 70 earlier that morning. This powder makes it easy to reapply on the go thanks to its retractable brush that dispenses sheer mineral sunscreen onto your skin in a few passes. Plus, it won’t mess up your makeup. 

ColorScience ($64)


A Refreshing Face Mist

Not into powders? This three-in-one mist is another great option for reapplying on the go. With a hefty SPF of 50 and silica silylate in the mix, it actually tamps down any excess oil that may have accumulated so it leaves your mug looking fresher than it was pre-sunscreen. Just make sure to give the bottle a good shake, pull your hair back and close your eyes and lips before misting it all over your face and neck.

Supergoop! ($12)

Glow Recipe

A Serum-Like Gel

We had friends of all skin tones try this sun gel and the verdict was the same: “Whoa, what is this stuff?” Followed by, “It actually disappears when I put it on.” The clear formula absorbs within seconds of applying and the serum-like consistency feels refreshing on skin. A word to the wise: Hoard a bottle (or two) whenever the site restocks as it’s frequently sold out.

Make P:rem ($32)

Elizabeth Arden

A Tinted Moisturizer (of Sorts)

Calling all skin-care obsessed: This hi-tech formula combines a potent blend of antioxidants (like green tea and ferulic acid) that, when combined with its hefty dose of SPF 50, protects skin from all of the elements we face on a daily basis (including the ones we can’t see—like pollution). In terms of texture and finish, we’d say this one wears like a tinted moisturizer: super hydrating with a subtle hint of color.

Elizabeth Arden ($68)

RELATED: 7 Sunscreen Myths to Get Straight Before Summer

La Roche-Posay

A Cooling Lotion

And finally, for complete coverage on your face and body, there’s nothing we’ve tried and loved more in the last couple years than this French import (which you can, thankfully, now find at your nearest Target, Walgreens or Ulta). With zero fragrance and a cooling texture that feels particularly amazing when the sun is beating down on you, it disappears the minute you rub it into your skin.

La Roche-Posay ($36)

RELATED: The (Surprising) First Thing You Should Do When You Get a Sunburn

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