Quality and Affordable Sunscreens for Every Skin Type


Gabriella Bower

Sunscreen is a crucial part to your daily routine.

Dyanna Fleites-Cruz, Contributing Writer

What is sunscreen?

Sunscreen: something everyone tells you that you need, but think you need until your skin feels like it’s been torched by the surface of the sun the morning after a sunny day on the beach.

Why is sunscreen vital to your daily beauty routine?

Although it might have been once the most annoying part of your sunny days, sunscreen is one of the most important parts of a beauty routine. No matter how cloudy or cold a day may be, UV rays always manage to find their way down to you, especially through a damaged ozone layer. By shielding your skin with sunscreen, you can protect it from different effects including:

  1. Skin Cancer: UV radiation will damage genetic material that is vital to the health of your skin cells. Having too much DNA damage over time can eventually lead the cells to grow out of control, ultimately causing skin cancer.
  2. Wrinkles and blotchy spots on your face: UV radiation causes the outer layer of your skin, the dermis, to decompose. This layer of skin contains collagen and elastin, which allows your skin to remain firm. Once the skin is damaged by UV rays, premature wrinkles begin to form, along with blotchy spots.
  3. Sunburn: As I’m sure you all know (and have probably experienced) that a lack of sunscreen on a sunny day can cause sunburn, particularly for those with fairer skin. This can cause your skin to burn and eventually peel off, which is definitely not a good look.

When looking for sunscreen, it’s usually easy to just go for the cheapest brand and get it over with. However, that probably won’t give you the best results. For people with sensitive skin, it can be a bit difficult finding something that is affordable, effective and won’t irritate your skin. In order to achieve this, it is important to keep these three tips in mind when looking for the right sunscreen:

  1. Look for Zinc. It is a mineral that protects your skin against both UVA and UVB radiation without irritating it. If sunscreen doesn’t have Zinc as an active ingredient, make sure it at least says “broad spectrum” on the label. These will both protect from sunburn and have anti-aging qualities (bye, wrinkles). With this in mind, an effective and affordable brand of sunscreen is Supergoop. It is generally low priced and has these qualities.
  2. Stay away from BB and CC creams if your main focus is protection. BB creams provide coverage and also include SPF and antioxidants. CC creams are quite similar except they are lighter and also color correct. Although the creams do include sunscreen, they generally will not have all the necessary minerals or protect your skin for as long as a regular sunscreen would. Instead, try to find a sunscreen that can be mixed into your tinted foundation. Products like Shisheido’s “Urban Environment Oil-Free UV Protector” are lightweight and can be mixed into most foundations to create your own tinted sunscreen. It also has a matte finish in order to provide a clean and perfected look.
  3. Use lotion sunscreen that really caters to your own specific skin type. If you have oily skin, a lighter texture (like the Shisheido’s sunscreen) would be best for you. If your skin is drier, a thick moisturizing cream would be best.

When you compromise quality for price, your skin will pay the true cost and at the end of the day sunscreen is worth the investment.

Here are some affordable and effective recommendations:

For oily skin

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen Broad Spectrum (SPF 70), $11.49

Shisheido Urban Environment Oil-Free UV Protector (SPF 42), $32

For dry skin

Everyday Sunscreen with Cellular Response Technology (SPF 50), $19

COOLA Cucumber Face Sunscreen Moisturizer (SPF 30), $32

For sensitive skin

Neutrogena Sensitive Skin Sunblock Lotion (SPF 60), $11.99

Vanicream Sunscreen (SPF 50+), $25.35

Email Dyanna Fleites-Cruz at [email protected]