The Absolute Best Mineral Sunscreens, According to Thousands of 5-Star Reviews

Here's one thing you should know about me: I'm a stickler for using skincare that defends against environmental aggressors and helps heal and protect. As a Black girl growing up in the rainy but beautiful Pacific Northwest, I was always met with the popular and untrue myth that dark skin doesn't need sunscreen. I'm proud to say I knew just how magical my melanin could be from a young age and how it should be treated to keep it healthy. For me, that meant always wearing sunscreen, no matter how many days went by without the sun. 

Admittedly, I wish I had known more about sunscreen and how to select one. For example, did you know there are two types of sunscreen? According to Piedmont Healthcare, the main difference between mineral and chemical sunscreens is the formula. Chemical sunscreens often contain popular sun-protecting ingredients such as avobenzone, oxybenzone, and octinoxate, while mineral sunscreens (also commonly referred to as physical) mainly feature titanium dioxide or zinc oxide. 


(Image credit: @maryljean)

What Are Mineral Sunscreens?

Chemical and mineral sunscreens work differently to protect against sun damage. Chemical sunscreens absorb UV rays that hit our skin, converting those rays into heat that is released from the body. Mineral formulas, on the other hand, sit on the skin's surface and reflect the sun's damaging rays. Today, we're focusing on the many benefits of investing in a mineral sunscreen for the face, highlighting everything from formulas and ingredients to price points and popularity.

"There are numerous benefits to adding mineral sunscreen to your daily skincare routine," Love Sun Body CEO Terry Zickerman says. "Mineral filters are not absorbed into the plasma, and for consumers concerned with the hormonal effects of chemical UV filters, zinc oxide or zinc oxide and titanium dioxide formulas are best."

Zickerman founded Love Sun Body to create a safe, effective, and environmentally friendly line of mineral sunscreens. In 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration revealed a clinical study had found negative effects of six popular chemical sunscreen additives entering and remaining in the bloodstream. The good news? Mineral sunscreens are safe to use on the skin and trusted to provide broad-spectrum defense against UVA and UVB rays. Not only are they a must-have for anyone with acne-prone skin), but they're also immediately effective, with no wait time required after application.

"Because of their antibacterial properties, zinc oxide and titanium dioxide UV filters can also be calming to your skin," Zickerman explains. It also helps mineral sunscreens are less likely to clog your pores, have a longer shelf life, and can easily be combined with other skincare products for an effortless and natural-looking finish.

Ready to find the best mineral face sunscreen for you? Keep scrolling!

The Best Face Sunscreens


(Image credit: @amaka.hamelijnck)


(Image credit: @alllisonho)

A Few More of My Favorite Sunscreens

Maya Thomas
Assistant Beauty Editor
Maya Thomas is Who What Wear's assistant beauty editor based just outside of Seattle, Washington. Her strong love for all things beauty and fashion stems from a strong childhood interest in the fine arts. During a gap year spent in Paris studying the history of French fashion, she shifted her focus to English literature and journalism as a student at Loyola Marymount University with the goal of one day pursuing a career in fashion. After graduating in May 2021, Maya began freelancing for as a contributing commerce writer while also building a following on her lifestyle blog, When she's not writing, Maya spends her free time catching up on reading, perusing art galleries, and enjoying a night out at the ballet every now and then.