By now, we should all know how important it is to use sunscreen. Your skin needs it every day and every weather, no matter your skin type.
Sunscreen protects your skin from UV radiation, prevents reddening, uneven tanning, wrinkles, pigment spots, and sun damage.
Since animal ingredients have nothing to do with good sunblock, let us introduce you to the best vegan sunscreen for 2021.
From Alba Botanica to Sun Bum – get the best protection from the sun with natural, cruelty-free, and reef-safe products.
Best Vegan Sunscreens 2021
For Dry Skin
For Oily Skin
For Combination Skin
For Acne-Prone Skin
For Sensitive Skin
For Dull Skin
For Mature Skin
For Dark Skin
SPF 15 Sunscreen
What Makes Sunscreen Vegan?
Vegan sunscreen is a sunblock that contains no animal-derived ingredients. Vegan sunscreens cannot also be tested on animals.
Both physical and chemical sunscreen filters – the little particles that do all the work – are usually vegan-friendly.
The most common ingredients that make a sunscreen not vegan are animal-derived emollients and proteins such as lanolin, collagen, elastin, beeswax, and chitin.
- Lanolin: also called wool wax, an emollient derived from the sebaceous glands of sheep
- Collagen: an adhesive in the skin and other connective tissue, usually derived from cows or fish
- Elastin: a protein normally derived from cow’s connective tissue
- Beeswax: a secretion of the wax glands of bees
- Chitin: a polysaccharide obtained from the outer skeleton of insects, crabs, and lobsters
Instead of animal emollients in sunscreens, vegan brands use shea butter, cocoa butter, jojoba oil, or olive-derived squalene.
What To Look For In A Vegan Sunscreen?
There are three important things to keep in mind when choosing vegan sunscreen.
Choose Broad Spectrum
Your vegan sunscreen should always be marked broad-spectrum or full-spectrum SPF. This means that the lotion protects against both UVB and UVA radiation.
UVA has a longer wavelength and penetrates deeper into the skin causing photoaging. UVB has a shorter wavelength and causes sunburn.
Sunscreen with only SPF on the label protects you against UVB radiation only. Broad-spectrum adds the more important UVA protection.
Aim For SPF 30
SPF (Sun Protection Factor) shows your cream’s ability to protect the skin from sunburn. The higher the number, the more time it takes for sunburn to develop.
For daily use, we recommend choosing vegan sunscreen in the range of SPF 30 to SPF 50. For most people, SPF 30 is perfectly adequate.
Keep in mind that ultra-high SPF numbers like 70 or 100 do not provide much more protection than SPF 30.
While SPF 30 provides 97 percent protection from UVB rays, SPF 100 provides 99 percent protection from UVB. No sunscreen ever reaches 100 percent.
Sunscreens can be divided into two types – chemical and physical.
- Chemical vegan sunscreen is based on synthetic ingredients that absorb into the skin (oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate).
- Physical aka mineral vegan sunscreen uses natural minerals that form a protective layer on the skin (zinc oxide, titanium dioxide).
Chemical and physical sunscreens are equally effective in terms of UVA and UVB protection. But chemical sunscreens can be harmful to the environment and ocean systems.
Studies show that substances used in chemical sunscreens (oxybenzone, octinoxate) are absorbed by young corals and cause them to fade and die.
In 2018, Hawaii became the first country in the world to ban the use of synthetic sunscreens because the chemicals damage coral reefs.
To protect our oceans, prefer a mineral vegan sunscreen or a chemical vegan sunscreen that is at the minimum free of oxybenzone and octinoxate.
Best Vegan Sunscreen Brands
Here are the best brands for vegan sunscreen in 2021. From their selection, you will find only vegan and cruelty-free sunblocks made with natural, reef-safe minerals.
From Florida comes our new favorite sun care brand Sun Bum. The company is cruelty-free and offers both mineral vegan sunscreens and reef-safe chemical vegan sunscreens.
The company is not 100% vegan but their sunscreens are. That includes their bestselling Original sunscreen lotions, sprays, Mineral Sunscreen Collection, and SPF Lip Balms.
As for non-vegan products, some of Sun Bum’s lip balms and creams contain beeswax or honey. But the company currently working on a solution using synthetic beeswax.
We love their: Original SPF 30 Sunscreen Lotion
Goddess Garden is an organic skincare brand that makes natural vegan sunscreen for the whole family. The American brand is based in Colorado.
All their products are reef-safe, vegan, organic, and cruelty-free. They even have a collection of cruelty-free vegan sunscreen for babies and kids.
Goddess Garden offers vegan sunscreen lotions, sprays, and sticks that are sweatproof, waterproof, and safe for sensitive skin.
We love their: Sport SPF 50 Mineral Sunscreen Stick
Alba Botanica is an American personal care brand founded already in 1979. The brand is 100% cruelty-free with a good selection of vegan sunscreens.
Their products are reef-friendly, biodegradable, with no artificial colors. They only use plant-based and botanical ingredients and recyclable packaging.
All Alba Botanica’s sunscreens are vegan. Only some of their lip balms contain beeswax and their Hawaiian Smoothing Sugar Cane Body Polish contains honey.
We love their: Hawaiian Sunscreen SPF 50 Clear Spray
Pacifica is a fully vegan brand with a great vegan suncare collection. Explore mineral vegan sunscreens as well as SPF-enriched vegan body butters and bronzers.
As a natural beauty brand, Pacifica vegan sunscreens are paraben-free and use clean mineral ingredients such as zinc oxide. Pacifica is also very affordable.
We love their: Vegan Collagen SPF 30 Every Day Lotion
Acure is an American skincare brand that makes clean and affordable skincare products. Everything from Acure is vegan and cruelty-free.
Although Acure does not have a large collection of vegan sunscreens, they have two particularly strong ones that are suitable for every skin type.
Skin health is important to Acure. Therefore, they do not use parabens, sulfates, formaldehyde, mineral oils, or paraffin.
We love their: Radically Rejuvenating SPF 30 Day Cream
Best Vegan Sunscreens 2021
We have selected the best vegan sunscreens for every lifestyle and every skin type. Get that powerful broad-spectrum SPF protection the vegan way.
Best Chemical Vegan Sunscreen
This vegan sunscreen comes highly recommended by the vegan community. It has also earned some reputable beauty awards. And rightfully so – we also think it’s the best one.
The Unseen Sunscreen offers broad-spectrum SPF 40 and protects the skin also from tech light. It is completely weightless, scentless, leaves no white cast, and works great as a makeup primer.
Even though the sunscreen is chemical, it is free of reef-harming octinoxate and oxybenzone among many other harsh chemicals. The vegan sunscreen is also gluten-free.
Best Mineral Vegan Sunscreen
A true hit in the skincare world is Thrive’s Daily Defense mineral vegan sunscreen. The natural zinc sunscreen leaves no white cast and fits both lighter and darker skin tones alike.
This mineral sunscreen balm is packed with Costa Rican superplants like Juanilama, Fierrillom, and Coralillo. It loads your skin with healthy antioxidants leaving a dewy finish.
The broad spectrum vegan sunscreen blocks both UVA and UVB rays while repairing skin from sun exposure, pollution, and daily stressors. Based on minerals, it is 100% reef-safe.
We love that Thrive is both a vegan and socially conscious venture. They support the rural farmers in Costa Rica and improve the local soil through regenerative farming.
PS if you have very oily or acne-prone skin, we suggest you go for an oil-free mineral vegan sunscreen instead. A great choice for that is Supergoop! Mattescreen SPF 40.
Best Waterproof Vegan Sunscreen
This SPF 30 vegan sunscreen has a great water-repellent and sweat-resistant formula. It is also delicate on sensitive skin making it suitable for adults as well as children.
The mineral sunscreen absorbs quickly and leaves no white cast. The vegan sunscreen spray is eco-friendly, reef-safe, fragrance-free, and includes no chemical irritants.
Best Organic Vegan Sunscreen
If you are looking for organic vegan sunscreen, this is our favorite one. This vegan sunscreen contains only natural and organic components. It’s both reef-friendly and skin-friendly.
7th Avenue’s mineral sunscreen with zinc is suitable for the whole family including children. The plant-based formula is also water-resistant making it perfect to wear on the beach.
Best Affordable Vegan Sunscreen
Vegan sunscreen does not need to cost a fortune. The bestselling Hawaiian sunscreen from Alba Botanica is an amazing affordable vegan sunscreen for under 15 dollars only.
Alba Botanicals fuses botanical ingredients with reef-safe chemicals. You’ll get full UVA/UVB protection without any harmful oxybenzone or octinoxate.
This chemical vegan sunscreen feels silky and lightweight on your skin. The sunscreen is also water-resistant for up to 80 minutes.
Best Vegan Sunscreen For Face
The water-based vegan sunscreen is perfect for the face. It protects your skin from sun damage with a broad spectrum SPF 50 while nourishing and moisturizing it deeply.
Ideal for dry skin, this vegan sunscreen includes hyaluronic acid and coconut water to give your skin the everyday hydration it needs. The formula is organic, cruelty-free, and vegan.
Best Vegan Sunscreen For Body
For the body, we recommend Sum Bum’s moisturizing vegan sunscreen lotion with SPF 50. This sunblock is a must for hot summer days and sunny holidays.
The sunscreen protects the skin from sun damage and enriches it with vitamin E which helps the skin stay elastic and supple. Vitamin E comes with great anti-aging benefits.
Sun Bum Original Sunscreen has broad-spectrum chemical protection. It’s also reef-friendly, paraben-free, gluten-free, water-resistant, and hypoallergenic.
You can also get the same sunscreen as a vegan sunscreen spray.
Best Vegan Sunscreen For Dry Skin
If you have dry skin, try this moisturizing vegan sunscreen with zinc. It is completely mineral and contains olive-derived squalene and argan oil which moisturize the skin deeply.
We love that the sunscreen also has vitamin E to make your skin more elastic and radiant. The broad-spectrum vegan sunscreen with SPF 30 leaves skin non-oily and sheer.
Best Vegan Sunscreen For Oily Skin
Oily skin needs a vegan sunscreen that is non-oily and non-comedogenic. Such as the Glossier Invisible Shield Daily Sunscreen with SPF 35.
The completely transparent chemical sunscreen glides on smoothly and gives a healthy glow to the skin. It leaves no white cast, absorbs quickly, and makes a great base for makeup.
Best Vegan Sunscreen For Combination Skin
This vegan sunblock has both hydrating and blurring features that combination skin loves. It leaves skin fresh and done by itself but is also a great makeup primer.
The lightweight liquid formula hydrates dry areas while prism powder boosts radiance and blurs pores. The sunscreen also reduces age spots and discoloration with Kiwi extract.
The non-nano mineral sunscreen is 100% reef-friendly. With every purchase of the product, Volition Beauty donates an amount to the Coral Reef Alliance.
Best Vegan Sunscreen For Acne-Prone Skin
Dennis Gross is a certified dermatologist and surgeon who knows how to treat attention-seeking skin. And acne-prone skin loves care and attention.
This physical sunblock with SPF 40 is a safe and reliable choice for acne-prone skin. The mineral-based sunscreen is chemical-free, paraben-free, cruelty-free, and vegan.
The tinted formula also corrects skin tone by hiding redness and darker areas. Your skin is left smoother with a more radiant complexion.
Best Vegan Sunscreen For Sensitive Skin
Sensitive skin needs a gentle mineral sunscreen. And Goddess Garden has just the right fit – Daily Broad Spectrum SPF 30 with non-nano, chemical-free minerals.
The zinc protection is effective yet delicate on your skin. The sunblock also includes organic plant-based nutrients to gently hydrate and nourish your skin.
The vegan sunscreen is ultra-sheer, breathable, water-resistant, and lightly scented with organic lavender essential oil. The natural formula is safe for reefs and sensitive skin alike.
Best Vegan Sunscreen For Dull Skin
This vegan sunscreen with vitamin C is designed to give dull skin its glow back. This multitasking sunscreen has become a true community favorite thanks to the refreshing and radiant result.
Vitamin C is one of the most effective skincare ingredients, especially for dull and tired skin. Thanks to this sunblock, your skin will become brighter, more radiant, and hydrated.
Best Vegan Sunscreen For Mature Skin
First Aid Beauty has created the perfect anti-aging vegan sunscreen. You’ll get the full spectrum SPF 30, rich moisturization, and reduced appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
The vegan cream offers both physical and chemical sun protection. It also includes alpha-arbutin and two powerful botanicals that help even, brighten, and firm your skin.
The lightweight face cream is vegan, cruelty-free, and comes in a recyclable package.
Best Vegan Sunscreen For Dark Skin
This vegan sunscreen is specifically designed for people with black and darker skin. It protects your skin from the sun leaving no white cast whatsoever.
Black Girl Sunscreen is a true multitasker. It provides broad-spectrum protection while nourishing your skin with avocado, jojoba, cacao, carrot juice, and sunflower oil.
This chemical vegan sunblock is free from reef-harming oxybenzone and octinoxate. The formula is also fragrance-free and safe for sensitive skin.
Best Vegan Sunscreen For Men
Jack Black is a fantastic cruelty-free skincare brand for men. And their oil-free vegan sunscreen is perfect for men and women alike.
Made for active people, this broad-spectrum SPF 45 stays on during intense physical activity in and out of the water. It is also sweat-resistant and won’t drip into your eyes.
The power of this vegan sunscreen comes from its mix of chemical and mineral ingredients. It also includes organic calendula extract to soothe and comfort the skin.
Best Vegan Sunscreen For Kids
Kiss My Face Baby’s First Kiss Sunscreen SPF 50 is a fantastic vegan sunscreen for babies, toddlers, and kids. It gives delicate skin the effective yet gentle mineral protection it needs.
The non-nano mineral sunscreen with SPF 50 is broad-spectrum and water-resistant. It is tear-free, fragrance-free, and free of hard chemicals and irritants.
The sunscreen also includes chamomile and aloe to hydrate and soothe the child’s skin.
PS many parents prefer mess-free vegan sunscreen sticks for their kids. A great stick option is the Thinkbaby SPF 30 Sunscreen Stick.
Best Vegan Sunscreen With SPF 15
While we suggest getting a vegan sunscreen with at least SPF 30, you can still find some good vegan sunscreens with SPF 15. And SPF 15 is still better than nothing.
This mineral vegan sunscreen from The Ordinary uses a mix of titanium and zinc. The formula is also packed with healthy antioxidants to protect and nourish your skin.
The sunscreen is alcohol-free, nut-free, reef-safe, gluten-free, vegan, and cruelty-free.
Best Vegan Sunscreen Moisturizer
This vegan sunscreen moisturizer contains an insane amount of antioxidants to help the skin stay elastic and radiant.
The rich vegan lotion provides powerful SPF 50 sun protection with avobenzone and octinoxate. It also includes algae to soften and hydrate your skin.
The cream is rich yet light enough to suit as a makeup primer. We love that it does not leave skin looking shiny.
Best Tinted Vegan Sunscreen
With raving reviews, this vegan CC cream has the power to replace your liquid foundation and your sunscreen. The cream comes with reef-safe, chemical-free zinc SPF 30.
The color-correcting CC cream is made with certified organic ingredients such as aloe and grape juice. Enjoy powerful skin-perfecting and age-defying results.
PS for a vegan BB cream sunscreen, we also love Tarte’s Amazonian Clay BB Tinted Moisturizer SPF 20
Best Vegan Sunscreen Foundation
The multifunctional vegan foundation with SPF 40 gives you gorgeous dewy coverage and full-spectrum protection from UVA, UVB, UVC, and blue light.
Loved by dry skin, this vegan foundation hydrates and plumps your skin with vegan squalane, niacinamide, and hyaluronic acids.
On top of its many skincare benefits, we love that this vegan foundation sunscreen comes in a wide variety of shades for every skin.
FAQ About Vegan Sunscreen
Sunscreen can be vegan if it contains no animal-derived ingredients and is not tested on animals. To find vegan sunscreen, look for a certified vegan label on the packaging.
Sunscreen is not vegan if it includes animal-based ingredients such as beeswax or lanolin. Also, many sunscreens are not vegan because they are animal tested.
Vegan sunscreen is typically made with natural mineral filters such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. Vegan sunscreen also includes plant oils and botanical extracts.
Yes. Sunblock filters and emollients used in vegan sunscreen are equally effective as those in non-vegan sunscreen.
The best vegan sunscreen is the Supergoop! Unseen Sunscreen SPF 40. It is an effective broad-spectrum sunblock that allows the skin to breathe and leaves no white cast.
No, Neutrogena sunscreen is not vegan. The company uses beeswax in its sunblock.
No. Equate products are tested on animals.
No. All Good sunscreen is not vegan and contains beeswax.
Sunscreen is more important than we used to think. And lucky for us, there are a large number of vegan sunscreens to choose from.
We hope you found your new favorite vegan sunscreen from our list. The best sunblocks in 2021 are reef-friendly, skin-friendly, natural, vegan, and cruelty-free.
We love vegan sunblock selections of Alba Botanica, Goddess Garden, Acure, Sun Bum, Glossier, and Supergoop.
When we come across more amazing vegan and cruelty-free sunscreens, we’ll be sure to add them to this list.