We Tried This New SPF, and, Well, We've Finally Found Our Sunscreen Soulmate

For as long as I can remember, I’ve joked that I’m allergic to sunscreen. Of course, I’m not actually allergic to the stuff, but after years of trying (and failing) to find the ultimate elixir to protect my skin from the sun’s harmful rays, the search has begun to feel futile. Interestingly, I’ve had much better luck in the realm of facial sunscreens—more and more new and existing brands are jumping onto that particular bandwagon, but as far as body sunscreens go, there hasn’t been a lot of movement. It feels harder to find high-quality formulas that not only do an ample job of staving off sun damage, but also feel luxurious, comfortable, and entirely wearable atop our skin. I don’t know about you, but if I’m going to be frolicking in the sun all day, I want to feel like a goo-free butterfly.


(Image credit: Courtesy of Bask Suncare)

So, when I heard about a brand new, philanthropically charged suncare brand called Bask, which claimed to be the antithesis of almost every other sunscreen brand on the market, I was intrigued, to say the least. Would I finally be able to toss my old bottles of underwhelming sunblock in exchange for an option that was newer, cooler, and altogether safer for both my skin and the environment? That’s what I wanted to find out, and after chatting with the brand’s founder Michael Huffstetler, I had some answers.


(Image credit: Courtesy of Bask Suncare)

We all know we’re supposed to wear sunscreen to protect ourselves against skin cancer, just like we know we shouldn’t smoke cigarettes in an effort to avoid scary diseases such as lung cancer. That said, the threat of complications due to sun exposure hasn’t seemed to penetrate our psyches in quite the same way or with quite as much urgency.

As Huffstetler pointed out to me, one in five Americans will get skin cancer by age 70 and yet, it is the most preventable form of cancer. The elephant in the room? We need to actually want to wear the stuff that will do said preventing. By creating new, ultra-comfy sunscreen formulas (you have options—there’s both a non-aerosol spray and a lotion) that the masses would actually feel motivated to apply, Huffstetler is trying to help. To glean more information, he surveyed over 50,000 men and women, and according to the results, the number one application deterrent people have is how sunscreen "feels on the skin” and the number two deterrent revolved around the absence of healthy, clean ingredients.


(Image credit: Courtesy of Bask Suncare)

In addition to its light, not-cloying texture (this is not your thick, super-smelly SPF, folks), Bask’s clean ingredient profile is one of its most exciting highlights. Reef-safe, and skin-safe, the brand’s ingredients are all sustainably sourced and free of parabens and sulfates, and while more than 80% of the sunscreen products available for purchase in the United States have oxybenzone and/or octinoxate in them, you won’t find the former or the latter in your Bask products. The brand has also partnered with The Skin Protection Foundation (SPF) to build awareness for sun safety and increase the public’s access to sunscreen. Ten percent of Bask’s profits go to our NPO partners, so every purchase helps pay it forward.


(Image credit: Courtesy of Bask Suncare)

Of course, this is all very exciting and highly impressive, but as a sunscreen-averse beauty editor who has tried almost every SPF under the sun, I needed to perform some more intimate sleuthing. So, I gathered a few of my equally curious colleagues to see if both the lotion and non-aerosol spray would actually deliver on their lofty claims. Keep scrolling for our honest reviews and thoughts on Bask’s new SPF offerings in addition to some of our other favorite summer-in-the-sun beauty products.

Sarah Yang, Managing Editor, THE/THIRTY


(Image credit: @sarahayang)

A little bit about my skin and what I look for in sunscreen: My skin type is normal to dry. When I’m looking for sunscreens, I want them to be hydrating, but not too greasy or oily. I find that a lot of "old school” sunscreens feel like you’re wearing an extra layer of something—and definitely not in a good way. I love formulas that are lightweight, not sticky or greasy, sheer, and that feels like I’m just wearing regular lotion on my skin.

My Reviews

More Summer Beauty Favorites That Sarah Loves

Erin Jahns, Senior Beauty Editor


(Image credit: @erin_jahns)

A little bit about my skin and what I look for in sunscreen: I have acne-prone skin that definitely veers combination once summer rolls around. As far as sunscreens, I absolutely cannot handle anything that I can actually feel on my skin, which—eek—has led me to forgo SPF more often than I’d like to admit as a beauty editor. I want something that absorbs easily, quickly, and doesn’t leave any kind of chalky finish on my skin. Since I break out easily (even on my body), I don’t want anything that’s going to suffocate my skin or accrue more and more grease and oil as the day wears on. Instead, I want something lightweight, breathable, and hydrating that ultimately feels practically invisible on my skin. Is that too much to ask?

My Reviews

More Summer Beauty Favorites That Erin Loves

Anna LaPlaca, Associate Fashion Editor


(Image credit: @anna_laplaca)

A little bit about my skin and what I look for in sunscreen: I have normal to dry skin. I know I’m not alone here, but I absolutely cannot stand sunscreens that are too greasy. There’s no worse feeling than heading home feeling grimy and gritty after a long beach or pool day and several applications of sunscreen. I honestly never minded the distinct smell that most sunscreens give off because the scent makes me nostalgic for family vacations growing up, but if I had to describe my ideal formulation, it would be minimal greasiness, maximum skin hydration (think a classic body lotion), and little to no scent. 

My Reviews

More Summer Beauty Favorites That Anna Loves

Drew Elovitz, Director of Content Strategy and Senior Managing Editor


(Image credit: @drewblahblah)

A little bit about my skin and what I look for in sunscreen: I was excited to take Bask sunscreen for a test drive for a ton of reasons, but I was definitely lured in by the idea of clean and safe sunscreen that promised no white cast or residue. With a genetic disposition for skin cancers on my side, and my partner having darker but more sensitive skin than my own, we are both extremely particular and conscientious when it comes to sun safety and the products that we use.

My Reviews

More Summer Beauty Favorites That Drew Loves

Beauty Director

Erin has been writing a mix of beauty and wellness content for Who What Wear for over four years. Prior to that, she spent two and half years writing for Byrdie. She now calls Santa Monica home but grew up in Minnetonka, Minnesota, and studied writing, rhetoric, and communication at University of Wisconsin, La Crosse. She studied abroad in Galway, Ireland, and spent a summer in L.A. interning with the Byrdie and Who What Wear family. After graduating from UW, she spent one year in San Francisco, where she worked as a writer for Pottery Barn Kids and PBteen before moving down to L.A. to begin her career as a beauty editor. She considers her day-to-day beauty aesthetic very low-maintenance and relies on staples like clear brow serum (from Kimiko!), Lawless's Lip Plumping Mask in Cherry Vanilla, and an eyelash curler. For special occasions or days when she's taking more meetings or has an event, she'll wear anything and everything from Charlotte Tilbury (the foundations are game-changing), some shimmer on her lids (Stila and Róen do it best), and a few coats of the best mascara-type product on earth, Surratt's Noir Lash Tint.