Best Sunscreen for Melasma and Hyperpigmentation

Best Sunscreen for Melasma and Hyperpigmentation
June 6, 2022 Ellis James
If you have melasma, you probably know all too well how exposure to the UV rays from the sun can lead to flare-ups. Choosing the right sunscreen can make all the difference in keeping your melasma under control and preventing these flare-ups that can increase the areas of hyperpigmentation. If you’re ready to find the best sunscreen for melasma, keep reading. We’ve highlighted our top picks in the next few sections, and we’ll also share some important information to help when choosing a sunscreen.

Neutrogena Sheer Zinc Oxide Dry-Touch Face Sunscreen with Broad Spectrum SPF 50, Oil-Free, Non-Comedogenic & Non-Greasy Mineral Sunscreen, 2 fl. oz


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Best Sunscreen for Melasma

Sunscreen is important for everyone.  It can help reduce the risk of cancer.  However, sunscreen can be especially important for those with melasma.  Without the right sunscreen, you’ll be more likely to experience melasma flare-ups caused by the UV rays from the sun.  Below, you’ll find our top picks for the best sunscreen for melasma.

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What is the best sunscreen for melasma?

Editor’s Pick – EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum Sunscreen

EltaMD UV Clear Facial Sunscreen Broad-Spectrum SPF 46 Face Sunscreen for Sensitive Skin or Acne-Prone Skin, Oil-Free, Dermatologist-Recommended Mineral-Based Face Sunscreen with Zinc Oxide, 1.7 oz

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Sunscreen Highlights

  • Oil-free formula
  • Protects sensitive skin
  • Formulated with zinc oxide
  • Offers protection against UVA and UVB rays
  • SPF 46 protection

The EltaMD Clear Broad-Spectrum Sunscreen is an excellent pick for individuals with melasma.  The formula, which is designed to protect sensitive skin that is prone to discoloration, is oil free and features zinc oxide.  This sunscreen offers SPF 46 protection against the UVA and UVB rays of the sun to keep your melasma flare-ups under control.

Why We Love It

We chose this sunscreen as our top pick for those with melasma because of its sensitive skin-friendly formula.  It is specifically designed for use by individuals who are prone to discoloration, such as occurs with melasma.

What Users are Saying

Individuals with melasma who have tried this sunscreen are so happy that they found it.  They have shared that it works well to protect their skin from the sun and that they love that the sunscreen doesn’t feel oily or uncomfortable on their skin.  Many users also shared that the more neutral scent makes it easier to wear this sunscreen on a daily basis, which is important for keeping their melasma under control.  However, some users weren’t very happy with this sunscreen and shared that it irritated their skin.

 

Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen

BLUE LIZARD Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen with Zinc Oxide, SPF 50+, Water Resistant, UVA/UVB Protection with Smart Bottle Technology - Fragrance Free, 5 oz

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Sunscreen Highlights

  • Formulated with zinc oxide and titanium dioxide
  • No oxybenzone or octinoxate
  • SPF 50 protection
  • Sweat and water-resistant for up to 80 minutes
  • No fragrances or parabens

The Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen is another top choice for those with melasma.  This mineral sunscreen features zinc oxide and titanium dioxide as its active ingredients.  These minerals work to block the UVA and UVB rays from the sun from hitting your skin.  There is no oxybenzone or octinoxate, which are not recommended for individuals with melasma, in the formula.  Additionally, the sunscreen is designed to resist sweat and water for up to 80 minutes.

What Users are Saying

Most individuals who have tried this sunscreen are pleased with how it has helped them.  They have shared that it offers good protection against the sun and has helped them avoid getting a burn.  They also like that a little of the sunscreen goes a long way, which helps them to get the most for their money.  However, some users found that the sunscreen made their skin look too white.

 

Obagi Medical Sun Shield Broad Spectrum Sunscreen Lotion

Obagi Sunscreen Sun Shield Matte Broad Spectrum SPF 50 Sunscreen, combines UVB absorption and UVA protection, 3 oz

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Sunscreen Highlights

  • Both a chemical and physical sunscreen
  • Active ingredients include homosalate, octisalate, and zinc oxide
  • Provides SPF 50 protection
  • Non-greasy feel
  • Sheer coverage
  • PABA- and fragrance-free

If you’re searching for the best sunscreen for melasma, you may also want to take a look at the Obagi Medical Sun Shield Broad Spectrum Sunscreen.  This product is both a chemical and physical sunscreen that features zinc oxide, homosalate, and octisalate as its active ingredients.  It offers SPF 50 protection with a non-greasy and sheer finish.  The formula is also fragrance- and PABA-free.

What Users are Saying

There are many positive reviews for this sunscreen from users with melasma.  They have shared that wearing this sunscreen helps prevent their melasma from flaring up.  Some of the other things users like about this sunscreen include its non-greasy feel, how quickly it is absorbed into their skin, and that it doesn’t have any fragrance.  However, a few users don’t like the way the sunscreen feels on their skin and have shared that they find the consistency to be too gritty.

 

La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt-in Milk Sunscreen

 

La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt-In Sunscreen Milk Body & Face Sunscreen Lotion Broad Spectrum SPF 60, Oxybenzone Free, Oil-Free Sunscreen, Water Resistant

 

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Sunscreen Highlights

  • Suitable for use on the face and body
  • Fast-absorbing
  • Hydrates skin
  • SPF 60 protection
  • Suitable for use on all skin types
  • Oxybenzone-free formula

If you want to stay away from oxybenzone sunscreens for your melasma, why not try the La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt-in Milk Sunscreen.  The active ingredients in the formula include avobenzone, homosalate, octisalate, and octocrylene.  You can use this non-greasy sunscreen on your face and body.  It is designed to absorb quickly into skin and works to bring hydration to the skin to leave it feeling soft and smooth.

What Users are Saying

If you ask users what they think of this sunscreen, you’ll get a lot of positive responses.  Some of the things that individuals who have tried the sunscreen for melasma seem to love most include its neutral scent, how quickly it absorbs into their skin, and that it doesn’t have a greasy feel.  Unfortunately, some users weren’t very pleased with their decision to try this sunscreen.  Some shared that it is too thin to easily apply, and a few others shared that it caused their skin to break out.

 

Neutrogena Sheer Zinc Face Mineral Sunscreen

Neutrogena Sheer Zinc Oxide Dry-Touch Face Sunscreen with Broad Spectrum SPF 50, Oil-Free, Non-Comedogenic & Non-Greasy Mineral Sunscreen, 2 fl. oz

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Sunscreen Highlights

  • Hypoallergenic formula
  • Zinc oxide as active ingredient
  • SPF 50 protection
  • Dries without a greasy finish
  • Water-resistant formula
  • No parabens, phthalates, or dyes.

Finally, you may also want to consider the Neutrogena Sheer Zinc Face Mineral Sunscreen for your melasma.  This SPF 50 sunscreen offers a hypoallergenic formula with zinc oxide as the star ingredient.  The sunscreen goes on easily and dries without leaving your skin feeling greasy.  The formula is also water-resistant.

What Users are Saying

Customers with melasma who have tried this sunscreen are impressed with how well it works to protect their skin and prevent flare-ups.  They also like that the sunscreen has a lightweight and non-greasy feel, and some have also shared that it leaves their skin feeling very soft and smooth.  However, some users, especially those with darker skin, said that this sunscreen left their face looking too white.

 

FAQs

What type of sunscreen is best for melasma?

Choosing the right products for your skin with melasma is important, and sunscreen is no different.  There are two types of sunscreen:  physical blocker sunscreens and chemical blocker sunscreens.  Before we share which type of sunscreen is best for melasma, let’s take a second to identify the characteristics of each choice.

As their name implies, physical blocker sunscreens work by physically stopping the sun’s rays from getting to your skin.  They create a barrier over the skin to achieve this goal.

Chemical blocker sunscreens absorb the UV rays from the sun and let off energy from these rays in the form of heat.  To do this, they use special nanoparticles.

Is physical or chemical sunscreen better for melasma?

So, is physical or chemical sunscreen better for melasma?  While both types of sunscreen can be effective, physical blockers tend to stop more of the UV rays from getting to your skin.  This makes them the better choice for individuals with melasma and hyperpigmentation.

Is zinc oxide good for melasma?

Yes, sunscreens with zinc oxide are a good choice for those with melasma.  Zinc oxide is a type of physical blocker, meaning it will keep the sun’s rays from hitting your skin.  Aim to find a sunscreen with a zinc oxide concentration of 5% or higher.

Is zinc sunscreen better for melasma than oxybenzone?  The answer to this is also yes.  In fact, you should definitely try to avoid using any sunscreens with oxybenzone if you have melasma.  This is because experts believe that oxybenzone can disrupt the hormones in the body.  Since melasma may be the result of a hormonal imbalance, using a sunscreen with oxybenzone may make things worse.

Which SPF is best for melasma?

If you have melasma, you should choose a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30, if not closer to 50.

Can sunscreen cure melasma?

Sunscreen can not cure melasma.  There is currently no permanent cure for this condition.  However, sunscreen can help treat melasma and can be even more effective when used alongside other melasma treatments.

 

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Selecting the Best Sunscreen for Melasma

Now, you have all the information you need to decide which sunscreen for melasma is right for you.  Which of our recommendations sounds like the best fit for you?  Regardless of which product you choose, remember to apply it before heading outside, and then reapply as needed.  This will help keep your melasma under control and prevent flare-ups.

To learn more about choosing the best sunscreen, check out these related posts on our blog:

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