Choosing the best facial sun cream comes down to knowing exactly what you want from the product before you buy anything. The four most important components of a good facial sun cream are the level of SPF in the product, whether the cream is likely to cause blocked pores and acne, whether the cream is actually intended for the face, and whether the cream blocks both UVA and UVB rays. Other features of a great facial sun cream, such as the scent, texture, and price, are all matters of personal preference that you can decide on with some experimentation.
Since it will be used on your face, it is a good idea to make sure the sun cream is intended specifically for the face instead of for the body. This will help make sure that the cream is gentle enough for your delicate facial skin. Some harsh chemicals in creams and lotions intended specifically for the body can irritate the sensitive facial skin and cause rashes, blotches, or discomfort.
Choosing a sun cream specifically formulated for the face will also help reduce the possibility that the cream will clog pores and cause acne and breakouts. Heavy or oily creams may be too much for people with already oily skin, although people with dry skin may tolerate these creams better or even appreciate the extra moisture the oil provides. Oil-free sun creams are a better choice for people with oily or normal skin, or those who are prone to clogged pores and acne breakouts. Often, oil-free creams are still too heavy for naturally oily skin, however. Some sun creams offer very light formulas that go on as a thin liquid and dry quickly, and some are formulated to soak in and create a dry, matte finish to solve this problem.
Regardless of the type of formula you choose, most dermatologists recommend using sun protection lotions for the body with an SPF of at least 15 and lotions with at least SPF 30 for the face. Another frequent recommendation from dermatologists is to extend your facial sun cream application to cover your neck, chest, and hands as well as the face. It is also important to choose a sun cream with the words “broad spectrum” that specifically states it blocks both UVA and UVB rays. Some sunscreens only block UVB rays, which can help prevent painful sunburns but does little to protect the deeper layers of the skin from premature aging and cancer.