Sunscreen For Black Skin: Tips For Soothing And Shielding Your Skin This Summer

lady with black skin looking up at a sunny sky

Sporadic sunny days are finally here, summer holidays are being booked, and we’re embracing more time outside, appreciating the temperature change. With this in mind, we’re sharing hints and tips on how to keep black skin safe in the sun, advising on the best face sunscreen for black skin, as well as mineral and physical sunscreen for dark skin.

SPF for black skin can often be challenging to get just right, with many sunscreens containing ingredients that leave behind a white or chalky residue that’s particularly noticeable on darker skin tones. With fewer formulas created specifically for people with black skin, it can be hard to find products that work well, keep you protected, and your skin soothed and nourished.

Myth Busting: "People With Black Skin Don’t Need SPF"

A common misconception is that people with dark skin tones don’t need to wear sunscreen, believing that with higher levels of melanin, their skin doesn’t need the extra protection.

This is in fact not true. Although the increased melanin in darker skin provides some natural protection against the sun, it doesn’t defend against skin cancer, sun damage, premature ageing, or environmental damage. So, wearing a high factor SPF daily is essential for keeping your skin healthy and protected, year-round.

lady with black skin smiling

Chemical Or Mineral Sunscreen For Dark Skin: Which Is Best?

Although both chemical and mineral sunscreens can be effective for people with black skin, for many, mineral sunscreens are a better option. Formulated to leave no white cast, transparent or tinted mineral sunscreens are often gentler on sensitive skin, causing fewer irritations and reactions with their zinc oxide and titanium dioxide-infused formulas. 

Our Favourite Sunscreens For Black Skin

Saltee City Serum SPF+

Incredibly light and beautifully fragranced, this daily SPF from Saltee provides incredible protection against UVA and UVB rays while nourishing your skin with its black ginger extract, venuceane, Nordic pine bark, and panthenol-enriched formula.

Boosting skin cell regeneration, preventing hyperpigmentation, and improving skin elasticity to reduce fine lines, this transparent Saltee City Serum SPF+ is perfect for wearing on its own or as a base for your makeup, hydrating your skin while defending it from the sun.

Neostrata Sheer Hydration SPF40

Perfect for oily skin, this Neostrata Sheer Hydration SPF40 is lightweight, oil-free and soothing, calming sensitive skin without irritation.

Enriched with NeoGlucosamine, this sheer SPF reduces the appearance of dark spots, pigmentation, and acne, balancing your skin tone and improving skin texture to leave your skin calm, firm, and protected.

smiling lady with black skin

Dermalogica Invisible Physical Defense Mineral Sunscreen SPF30

Invisible, weightless, and highly-protecting, this non-nano zinc oxide-infused formula doesn’t leave behind a thick white residue, drying invisibly into your skin to defend against UV rays and blue light.

Soothing your skin and reducing UV ray-induced dryness and redness, this bio-active mushroom complex-enriched Dermalogica Invisible Physical Defense Mineral Sunscreen SPF30 calms as it protects, leaving your skin safe, clear, and radiant.

COOLA Body Spray SPF50

Protecting your skin and leaving it smelling incredible with its signature guava and mango aroma, this antioxidant-rich COOLA Body Spray SPF50 nourishes your skin, the ultra-fine mist invisibly shielding against UVA and UVB rays.

Vegan, cruelty-free, and sustainable, this natural compression spray, minimises the amount of aerosol gasses in the environment and on your skin, reducing allergic reactions and skin flare-ups.

happy man with black skin applying sunscreen to his face

iS Clinical Extreme Protect SPF40 

Brimming with antioxidants, this iS Clinical Extreme Protect SPF40 supports optimal skin health as it shields you from the sun, the all-physical transparent sunscreen actives keeping you safe on even the sunniest of days.

Hydrating smoothing, and softening your skin, this botanically-based formula provides multi-level broad-spectrum UVA and UVB protection, defending against environmental damage and sunburn to keep your skin radiant, healthy, and shielded from the sun.

Colorescience Sunforgettable Total Protection Brush-On Shield

Smoothing and evening your skin tone while defending against UVA and UVB rays, this long-lasting, water-resistant, broad-spectrum sunscreen is available in four shades, smoothing your complexion to a matte finish with no white cast or greasy residue.

An award-winning mineral-based formula, this Colorescience Sunforgettable Total Protection Brush-On Shield is perfect for sensitive skin as well as acne, rosacea, and eczema-prone complexions, soothing and calming while protecting against the sun.

lady with dark skin applying sunscreen to her cheek

Sun Bum Original SPF50

Pina colada-scented and high-protecting, this vitamin E-enriched Sun Bum Original SPF50 leaves no white cast as you apply it to your body, neutralising free radicals to prevent the visible signs of premature ageing.

Providing broad-spectrum protection, this high-factor sunscreen defends your body against UVA and UVB rays, preventing sunburn and skin damage, while deeply nourishing your skin.

Shop Sunscreen For Black Skin

Saltee City Serum SPF+Saltee City Serum SPF+
Saltee City Serum SPF+

Providing SPF 50 UVA and UVB protection, Saltee City Serum SPF+ is an incredibly light serum for everyday use.

£30.40 £38.00 20% offsaving
Dermalogica Invisible Physical Defense SPF 30Dermalogica Invisible Physical Defense SPF 30
Dermalogica Invisible Physical Defense SPF 30

£39.20 £49.00 20% offsaving
COOLA Body Spray SPF50 177mlCOOLA Body Spray SPF50 177ml
COOLA Body Spray SPF50 177ml

From £21.60 £27.00 20% offsaving
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iS Clinical Extreme Protect SPF 40iS Clinical Extreme Protect SPF 40
iS Clinical Extreme Protect SPF 40

Formulated with antioxidant-rich ingredients and state-of-the-art broad spectrum all-physical sunscreen actives, iS Clinical Extreme Protect SPF 40 supports optimal skin health as it moisturises and protects skin.

£85.00
Colorescience Sunforgettable Brush-On Sunscreen SPF 30
Colorescience Sunforgettable Brush-On Sunscreen SPF 30 - Deep

£43.99 £46.50 5% offsaving
Sun Bum Original SPF50 Lotion 177mlSun Bum Original SPF50 Lotion 177ml
Sun Bum Original SPF50 Lotion 177ml

£15.99 £19.99 20% offsaving

Enjoyed finding out about the best sunscreens for black skin? Stick around a while longer and read our latest blog post, where Dr Derrick Phillips, Consultant Dermatologist & British Skin Foundation Spokesperson, Reveals His Top Tips For Healthy Skin.