5 Best Mineral Sunscreens You Can Get At A Drugstore

Protect yourself from harmful UV rays with these budget-friendly picks.

July 26, 2016
surfer girl

For years, mineral sunscreens were known for their less-than-desirable chalky appearance on the noses of lifeguards and serious outdoorsmen. Unlike chemical sunscreens, which use a combination of carbon compounds to absorb active UV rays and release them, physical sunscreens use minerals ground down to fine powders to reflect the sun’s harmful rays. While chemical sunscreens apply easily and disappear from sight almost instantly, nearly half of the products you’ll encounter contain harmful active ingredients like oxybenzone, which studies indicate may trigger allergic reactions, disrupt hormone functions, and contribute to the deterioration of coral reefs (it’s one of the reasons chemical sunscreens are part of The 8 Most Toxic Things On Drugstore Shelves). Mineral sunscreens are a natural alternative that accomplish their protective work on top of the skin and have the added bonus of being effective immediately after they’re applied between your body and the sun. 

Here are five all-star mineral sunscreens—formulated with organic ingredients—which can defend you from the sun without visibly announcing your safe and eco-friendly skincare habits to the world.

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suntegrity sunscreen
1/5 Image courtesy of Amazon
For Sensitive Skin

Suntegrity Natural Mineral Sunscreen For Body Spf 30, Unscented utilizes a formula with zinc oxide as its only active ingredient, which is combined with organic aloe vera juice to calm irritation and redness while moisturizing and improving suppleness of the skin. Antioxidants from the lotion’s organic green tea extract, cucumber extract, and pomegranate seed oil protect your skin from free radical damage and help combat inflammation.

raw elements sunscreen
2/5 Image courtesy of Amazon
Water Resistant

With a higher-than-average percentage of zinc oxide, Raw Elements Eco Formula 30+ Lotion offers a serious water-resistant product suitable for surfers and extreme atheltes. The lotion’s organic beeswax forms a protective barrier against wind and salt water and ensures that it stays in place and won’t run into your eyes. Antioxidants from organic coffee oils add anti-aging benefits, while the vitamin E from organic cocoa butter moisturizes, renews, and repairs the skin. You can reduce your plastic output by choosing the company’s signature product in this biodegradable tin.

badger sunscreen
3/5 Image courtesy of Amazon
For Dry Skin

No matter how effective your sunscreen, it’s important to reapply about every two hours of sun exposure. Enter this convenient water-resistant Badger Spf 35 Sport Sunscreen Stick, which uses zinc oxide to reflect the sun and has a soothing organic base of extra virgin olive oil, cocoa butter, and shea butter ideal for your face, ears, nose, and lips. Badger packs similar benefits into their daily, active, and sport sunscreen lotions. 


goddess garden sunscreen
4/5 Image courtesy of Amazon
Everyday Protection

By combining two active ingredients—zinc and titanium oxide—Goddess Garden Everyday Natural Sunscreen Lotion reaches the safe and effective broad spectrum threshold of 30 SPF while lowering the total percentage of minerals to achieve a more transparent, thinner lotion. Lavender essential oil provides a light fragrance and relief for minor burns, insect bites, and stings. 

kabana suncreen
5/5 Image courtesy of Rodales
For Kids

Kabana’s original sunscreen—Green Screen Organic Sunscreen Spf 32, Originalwas formulated with the whole family in mind. Relying on a zinc oxide base for sun protection, its nine edible-grade, 86 percent certified organic ingredients make it both safe for babies under six months of age and ideal for anyone with sensitive skin. Added bonus: the tube itself is 100 percent recyclable.