Best Cruelty-Free Face Sunscreens

Looking for the best cruelty-free face sunscreens of 2022? We’ve got you! We’ve researched all face SPFs that are not tested on animals and narrowed it down to the 16 best options below.

Cruelty-Free Face Sunscreen

Sunscreen no longer is something we wear only on beach days. It is the most important skincare product, as it protects our skin from sunburn, aging, and even cancer, and needs to be on your face year-round.

Luckily, the cruelty-free sunscreens below are a joy to use, making it a lot easier to incorporate SPF in your daily skincare routine.

Whether you’re looking for a SPF30 or higher, a mineral or a chemical sunscreen, a sheer or tinted formula, there’s a cruelty-free face sunscreen for everyone!

Vegan

Do you want your skincare to be cruelty-free as well as free of animal (by)products? You’re the best! This list offers you 11 cruelty-free + vegan options.

The 16 Best Face Cruelty-Free Sunscreens

  1. Best Overall: Biossance – Squalane + Zinc Sheer Mineral Sunscreen VEGAN
  2. Non-Greasy: Paula’s Choice – Extra Care Non-Greasy Sunscreen SPF 50
  3. Matte: COOLA – Mineral Face Matte Moisturizer SPF 30 VEGAN
  4. Drugstore: Sun Bum – Face Lotion SPF 50 VEGAN
  5. Best for Dry Skin: COSRX – Aloe Soothing Sun Cream SPF50 PA+++ VEGAN
  6. UV + Blue Light Protection: Dermalogica – Prisma Protect SPF 30 VEGAN
  7. Sunscreen and Primer in One: Tatcha – Silken Pore Perfecting Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 35 PA+++
  8. Invisible: Supergoop – Unseen Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 40 VEGAN
  9. Light-Weight: Coola –  Full Spectrum 360 Sun Silk Drops VEGAN
  10. All-In-One: ILIA – Super Serum Skin Tint SPF40 VEGAN
  11. Best Tinted Sunscreen: Paula’s Choice – Resist Super-Light Daily Wrinkle Defense SPF30
  12. Zero White Cast: Glossier – Invisible Shield SPF 35 VEGAN
  13. Moisturizing: Josie Maran – Argan Daily Moisturizer SPF 47
  14. Sunscreen + Tinted Moisturizer In One: Juice Beauty – SPF 30 Tinted Mineral Moisturizer BB VEGAN
  15. City Life: Murad – City Skin Age Defense Broad Spectrum SPF 50 PA +++
  16. Best for Glowing Skin: Tula – Protect + Glow Daily Sunscreen SPF 30 VEGAN


The 16 Best Cruelty-Free Face Sunscreens


All products featured on beauty.beyond.cruelty are independently selected. If you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission (at no additional cost to you). See our affiliate disclosure for more information.



1/16

Best Overall:

Biossance

Squalane + Zinc Sheer Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30

Biossance Squalane + Zinc Sheer Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30

Why We Love:

  • lightweight
  • sheer formula
  • no white cast
  • moisturizing
  • made with skin-loving squalane
  • non-greasy
  • doesn’t clog pores
  • mineral-based
  • natural scent
  • vegan
  • reef-friendly
  • subtle dewy finish
  • recyclable packaging


What We Love Less:

  • not water-resistant

VIEW ON AMAZON | $$

This lotion-like mineral-based SPF30 keeps you shielded from the sun, without any white cast. The sheer formula wears well under makeup as well as on its own. It’s non-comedogenic, meaning it doesn’t clog the pores, making it a great option for acne-prone skin too.

Finish: subtle dewy | Tinted: no | Best for: all skin types | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) | SPF: 30 | Water-resistant: | Type: mineral | Active ingredients: zinc oxide 14% | Cruelty-free: yes, Biossance is a Leaping Bunny certified cruelty-free brand | Vegan: yes, Biossance is a vegan brand | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, synthetic fragrance, animal testing, animal (by)products | Packaging: recyclable plastic


RELATED: The Best Cruelty-Free Body Sunscreens



2/16

Best Non-Greasy:

Paula’s Choice

Extra Care Non-Greasy Sunscreen SPF 50

Paula's Choice Extra Care Non-Greasy Sunscreen SPF 50

Why We Love:

  • non-greasy
  • lightweight
  • oil-free
  • no white cast
  • doesn’t clog pores
  • water-resistant
  • fragrance-free
  • high SPF

What We Don’t Love:

  • no mineral SPF
  • not vegan

VIEW ON AMAZON | $

Can’t stand greasy or sticky sunscreen? This is the sunscreen to add to your regime. The ultra-lightweight non-greasy formula is free of oil, absorbs super quickly and leaves a matte finish. Plus, for the amount you get, it’s pretty affordable.

Finish: matte | Tinted: no | Best for: normal, oily, combination skin, acne-prone skin | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) | SPF: 50 | Water-resistant: yes | Type: chemical | Active ingredients: homosalate 10%, oxybenzone 6%, octisalate 5%, avobenzone 3%, octocrylene 2% | Cruelty-Free: yes, Paula’s Choice is a PETA-certified cruelty-free brand. However, they are owned by Unilever, a company that’s not cruelty-free | Vegan: no | Free of: paraben, fragrance, animal testing


RELATED: The Bestselling Products of Cruelty-Free Brand Paula’s Choice



3/16

Best Matte Sunscreen:

Coola

Mineral Face Matte Moisturizer SPF 30

Coola Mineral Face Matte Moisturizer SPF 30

Why We Love:

  • mousse-like texture
  • matte finish
  • tinted
  • blurs pores and fine lines
  • non-greasy
  • made with rosehip seed oil to support skin elasticity
  • vegan
  • mineral-based
  • reef-friendly
  • water-resistant
  • unscented

What We Don’t Love:

  • some may prefer something more moisturizing and less matte
  • pricey

VIEW ON AMAZON | $$$

This mousse-textured sunscreen applies like a dream. It is best for combination for oily skin, as it has a matte finish and keeps you oil-free throughout the day. The hint of coverage blurs pores and fine lines and makes a perfect base for makeup.

Finish: matte | Tinted: yes | Best for: combination and oily skin | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) | SPF: 30 | Water-resistant: yes, up to 40 minutes | Type: mineral | Active ingredients: titanium dioxide 3.2%, zinc oxide 1.8% | Cruelty-Free: yes, Coola is a PETA-certified cruelty-free brand. However, they are owned by S.C. Johnson, a company that’s not cruelty-free | Vegan: yes, this product is vegan, as the majority of the brand’s products. However, Coola is not a vegan brand, since they also sell products that do contain animal (by)products | Free of: paraben, fragrance, animal testing, animal (by)products



4/16

Best Drugstore:

Sun Bum

Face Lotion SPF 50

Sun Bum Face Lotion SPF 50

Why We Love:

  • budget-friendly
  • oil-free
  • no white cast
  • water-resistant
  • high SPF
  • semi-matte finish
  • subtle scent
  • vegan

What We Don’t Love:

  • no mineral SPF

VIEW ON AMAZON | $

On a budget? This oil-free lotion offers solid and invisible SPF50 protection and retails for 12$. It is water-resistant, so great for beach days and outdoor sports too. Sun Bum’s sunscreen has a natural sunscreen scent, that isn’t overpowering.

Finish: semi-matte | Tinted: no | Best for: normal to oily skin | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) | SPF: 50 | Water-resistant: | Type: chemical | Active ingredients: avobenzone 3%, homosalate 10%, octisalate 5%, octocrylene 10% | Cruelty-free: yes, Sun Bum is a Leaping Bunny certified cruelty-free brand. However, they are owned by S.C. Johnson, which a not a cruelty-free company | Vegan: yes, this product is vegan, as the majority of the brand’s products. However, Sun Bum is not a vegan brand, since they also sell products that do contain animal (by)products | Free of: paraben, animal testing, animal (by)products



5/16

Best Cruelty-Free Face Sunscreen For Dry Skin:

COSRX

Aloe Soothing Sun Cream SPF50 PA+++

Cosrx Aloe Soothing Sun Cream SPF50 PA+++

Why We Love:

  • lightweight, creamy formula
  • moisturizing
  • made with aloe vera to hydrate and sooth skin
  • fast-absorbing
  • fresh scent
  • glowy finish
  • no white cast
  • plays well with makeup
  • high SPF
  • vegan
  • decent price point

What We Don’t Love:

  • contains fragrance
  • not water-resistant

VIEW ON AMAZON | $

This K-Beauty face sunscreen offers high protection while aloe vera hydrates and soothes the skin. The lightweight, creamy texture is quickly absorbed without leaving your face tacky. It has a fresh fragrance, that doesn’t linger.

Finish: dewy | Tinted: no | Best for: dry to normal skin | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) | SPF: 50 | Water-resistant: no | Type: chemical + mineral | Active ingredients: ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate, bis-ethylhexyloxyphenol methoxyphenyl triazine, phenylbenzimidazole sulfonic acid, isoamyl p-methoxycinnamate, titanium dioxide | Cruelty-free: yes, Cosrx is cruelty-free | Vegan: yes, this is a vegan product. However, Cosrx is not a vegan brand, since they also sell products that do contain animal derived ingredients | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, animal testing, animal (by)products

RELATED: The Bestselling Products of Cruelty-Free K-Beauty Brand Cosrx



6/16

Best UV + Blue Light Protection:

Dermalogica

Prisma Protect SPF 30

Dermalogica Prisma Protect SPF 30

Why We Love:

  • protects from UV, blue light, pollution and infrared
  • moisturizing
  • non-greasy
  • zero white cast
  • leaves a healthy glow
  • natural citrusy scent
  • vegan

What We Don’t Love:

  • no mineral SPF

VIEW ON AMAZON | $$

Not only UV rays can harm and age our skin, but also the blue light from our screens, as well as pollution and infrared. Luckily, this multi-tasking sunscreen shields the skin from all that. The non-greasy lotion is formulated with soothing matcha and sage extracts and leaves a healthy glow.

Finish: glowy | Tinted: no | Best for: all skin types in need of all-round protection | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB), pollution, infrared and blue light | SPF: 30 | Water-resistant: | Type: chemical | Active ingredients: homosalate, octocrylene | Cruelty-free: yes, Dermalogica is a cruelty-free brand. However, their parent company Unilever is not cruelty-free | Vegan: yes, this product is vegan. However, Dermalogica is not a vegan brand, since they also sell products that do contain animal (by)products | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, synthetic fragrance, animal testing, animal (by)products



7/16

Best Cruelty-Free Sunscreen and Primer in One:

Tatcha

Silken Pore Perfecting Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 35 PA+++

Tatcha Silken Pore Perfecting Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 35 PA+++

Why We Love:

  • silky texture
  • doubles as a primer
  • blurs pores
  • moisturizing formula
  • lightweight
  • non-greasy
  • matte finish
  • mineral-based
  • flowery scented

What We Don’t Love:

  • it can leave a hint of an ashy cast on darker skin tones
  • pricey
  • not vegan
  • contains fragrance

VIEW ON AMAZON | $$$$

This ultra-silky sunscreen doubles as a primer, as it blurs pores and leaves the perfect base for makeup. It blends easily and dries down to a matte finish and evened out complexion.

Finish: matte | Tinted: no | Best for: all skin types | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) | SPF: 35 | Water-resistant: no | Type: mineral | Active ingredients: zinc oxide 15%, octisalate 5% | Cruelty-free: yes, Tatcha is a cruelty-free brand. However Tatcha is owned by Unilever, a company that is not cruelty-free | Vegan: no | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, animal testing


Tip: Double Cleanse To Remove Sunscreen At Night

Sunscreen can be difficult to remove from your skin, which is why it’s best to double-cleanse before bed.

This means you start with an oil cleanser on dry skin to breakdown sunscreen, makeup and skincare, and follow with your normal face wash.

Double-cleansing ensures that there’s no sunscreen (or other residue) left behind on your skin.

Check Out:

The Best Cruelty-Free Cleansing Oils

The Best Cruelty-Free Face Washes


8/16

Best Clear Cruelty-Free Sunscreen:

Supergoop

Unseen Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 40

Supergoop Unseen Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 40

Why We Love:

  • high SPF
  • 100% clear formula
  • no white cast
  • controls oil
  • feels like nothing on
  • doubles as a primer
  • fragrance-free
  • water-resistant
  • leaves a subtle glow
  • also protects against blue light

What We Don’t Love:

  • no mineral SPF

VIEW ON AMAZON | $$

This sunscreen won Allure’s Best of Beauty award and we couldn’t agree more. First, it’s a 100% clear formula, so no white cast here. Second, it also shield skin from the blue light of our screens. Meanwhile, the scentless formula leaves a primer-like finish to keep oil at bay and helps makeup to stay on longer. And the best part, it feels like nothing on.

Finish: subtle glow | Tinted: no | Best for: all skin types | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) and blue light | SPF: 40 | Water-resistant: yes | Type: chemical | Active ingredients: avobenzone 3%, homosalate 8%, octinoxate 4.5%, octisalate 5% | Cruelty-free: yes, Supergoop is a Leaping Bunny certified cruelty-free brand | Vegan: yes, this is a vegan product. However Supergoop is not a vegan brand, as they also sell products that do contain animal-derived ingredients | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, animal testing, animal (by)products



9/16

Best Lightweight Cruelty-Free Sunscreen:

Coola

Full Spectrum 360 Sun Silk Drops Organic Face Sunscreen SPF 30

Coola Full Spectrum 360 Sun Silk Drops Organic Face Sunscreen SPF 30

Why We Love:

  • serum-like formula
  • non-greasy
  • hydrating
  • oil-free
  • non-comedogenic
  • you can mix it with your moisturizer or foundation
  • dewy finish
  • also protects against blue light and pollution
  • subtle fresh scent
  • handy dropper bottle
  • glass packaging
  • vegan

What We Love Less:

  • pricey
  • no mineral SPF
  • not water-resistant

VIEW ON AMAZON | $$$

These innovative silky drops make applying sunscreen every day a joy. The serum-like formula can be used on its own as well as mixed with a moisturizer or foundation. Being oil-free, non-greasy and non-comedogenic, this sunscreen won’t break you out.

Finish: dewy | Tinted: no | Best for: all skin types | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB), blue light, IR, pollution | SPF: 30 | Water-resistant: no | Type: chemical | Active ingredients: homosalate 10.0%, octocrylene 6.0%, octisalate 5.0%, avobenzone 2.0% | Cruelty-free: yes, Coola is a PETA-certified cruelty-free brand | Vegan: yes, this is a vegan product. However Coola is not a vegan brand, since they also sell products that do contain animal (by)products | Free of: paraben, phthalates, sulfates SLS and SLES, animal testing, animal (by)products



10/16

Best Sunscreen + Makeup + Skincare In One:

ILIA

Super Serum Skin Tint SPF40

Ilia Super Serum Skin Tint SPF40

Why We Love:

  • makeup, skincare and sun protection in one
  • dewy finish
  • high SPF
  • oil-free
  • offers light coverage
  • dewy finish
  • packed with skin-loving ingredients such as niacinamide, squalane and hyaluronic acid
  • moisturizing
  • also protects against blue light and infrared
  • wide shade range
  • clean brand
  • mineral-based
  • vegan
  • fragrance-free

What We Love Less:

  • pricey
  • not water-resistant

VIEW ON AMAZON | $$$

Why not wrap your makeup, skincare, and sun protection into one product? ILIA’s Super Serum Skin Tint SPF 40 protects, hydrates and delivers light dewy coverage.

Finish: dewy | Tinted: yes | Best for: all skin types | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB), blue light, infrared | SPF: 40 | Water-resistant: no | Type: mineral | Active ingredients: zinc oxide 12% | Cruelty-free: yes | Vegan: yes | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, silicones, fragrance, gluten, animal testing, animal (by)products



11/16

Best Tinted Face Sunscreen for Aging Skin:

Paula’s Choice

Resist Super-Light Daily Wrinkle Defense SPF30

Paula's Choice Resist Super-Light Daily Wrinkle Defense SPF30

Why we love:

  • sunscreen with light coverage
  • evens out skin tone
  • blurs fine lines
  • fast-absorbing
  • silky-matte finish
  • fragrance-free
  • with anti-aging ingredients
  • mineral-based

What We Don’t Love:

  • not water-resistant

VIEW ON AMAZON | $$$

Looking for a sunscreen that doubles as a tinted moisturizer, and fights wrinkles? Opt for Paula’s Choice Super-Light Daily Wrinkle Defense. The light coverage of this lotion-like formula, blurs fine lines, evens out skin tone and leaves your skin with a silky-matte finish. On top of that, it’s packed with antioxidants for its anti-aging benefits.

Finish: silky-matte | Tinted: yes | Best for: aging skin | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) | SPF: 30 | Water-resistant: no | Type: mineral | Active ingredients: zinc oxide 13% | Cruelty-free: yes, Paula’s Choice is a PETA-certified cruelty-free brand. However, they are owned by Unilever, a company that’s not cruelty-free | Vegan: no | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, fragrance, animal testing


RELATED: The Best Cruelty-Free Face Serums for Aging Skin



12/16

Best Cruelty-Free Face Sunscreen: Clear Formula

Glossier

Invisible Shield SPF 35

Glossier Invisible Shield SPF 35

Why We Love:

  • 100% clear
  • zero white cast
  • gel-like formula
  • non-comedogenic (doesn’t clog pores)
  • plays well with makeup
  • smells like summer
  • it leaves a glass-look glow

What We Don’t Love:

  • the bottle is tiny
  • no mineral SPF
  • not water-resistant

VIEW ON AMAZON | $$$

No matter how dark your skin tone, this clear gel-like sunscreen is 100% invisible. The gel-like formula glides on and leaves a glass-look sheen. It plays well with makeup, is breathable and, won’t block your pores. With a touch of sweet orange essential oil, this sunscreen subtly smells like summer.

Finish: glowy | Tinted: no | Best for: all skin types | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) | SPF: 35 | Water-resistant: no | Type: chemical | Active ingredients: avobenzone 3%, homosalate 6%, octisalate 5% | Cruelty-free: yes, Glossier is a Leaping Bunny certified cruelty-free brand | Vegan: yes, this is a vegan brand. However Glossier is not a vegan brand, since they also sell products that do contain animal (by)products | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, animal testing, animal (by)products



13/16

Best Moisturizing Sunscreen:

Josie Maran

Argan Daily Moisturizer SPF 47

Josie Maran Argan Daily Moisturizer SPF 47

Why We Love:

  • very moisturizing
  • SPF47
  • mineral-based
  • serum-like texture
  • translucent formula
  • no white cast
  • fast-absorbing
  • non-greasy
  • leaves a dewy glow
  • very subtle fruity scent
  • there’s also a tinted version to add a touch of color and coverage

What We Don’t Love:

  • may be too moisturizing for some
  • not water-resistant
  • not vegan

VIEW ON AMAZON | $$$

Is your skin on the dry side? Opt for this sunscreen and moisturizer in one. With an SPF47, it keeps you protected from the sun’s rays, while argan oil moistures and nourishes your skin. The light serum-like texture glides on and is quickly absorbed.

Finish: dewy | Tinted: no | Best for: dry to normal skin | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) | SPF: 47 | Water-resistant: no | Type: mineral | Active ingredients: zinc oxide and titanium dioxide | Cruelty-free: yes, Josie Maran is a PETA-certified cruelty-free brand | Vegan: no | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, phthalates, mineral oil, gluten, animal testing


14/16

Best BB Cream + SPF30:

Juice Beauty

SPF 30 Tinted Mineral Moisturizer BB

Juice Beauty SPF 30 Tinted Mineral Moisturizer BB

Why we love:

  • sunscreen + BB cream in one
  • mineral-based
  • made with hyaluronic acid for moisture
  • available in 3 shades
  • light coverage
  • glowy finish
  • doesn’t feel heavy
  • it has a light citrus scent
  • organic ingredients
  • reef-friendly
  • vegan
  • recyclable packaging

What We Love Less:

  • no deep shades

VIEW ON AMAZON | $$

Looking for a sunscreen that at the same time gives your face some light coverage? This SPF30 BB Cream will bring you a your-skin-but-better complexion while protecting you from sun’s rays. The mineral sunscreen is made with clean and natural ingredients, so you don’t have to worry about what you’re putting on your face.

Tinted: yes | Best for: dry, normal and sensitive skin | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) | SPF: 30 | Water-resistant: no | Type: mineral | Active ingredients: zinc oxide 20% | Cruelty-free: yes, Juice Beauty is a PETA and Leaping Bunny certified cruelty-free brand | Vegan: yes, this is a vegan product. However, Juice Beauty is not a vegan brand, since they also sell products that do contain animal (by)products | Free of: paraben, sulfates, phthalates, synthetic fragrance, silicones, animal testing, animal (by)products



15/16

Best Sunscreen For In The City:

Murad

City Skin Age Defense Broad Spectrum SPF 50 PA ++++

Murad City Skin Age Defense Broad Spectrum SPF 50 PA ++++

Why we love:

  • feels like a moisturizer
  • lightweight
  • slightly tinted
  • no white cast
  • also protects against pollution, blue light and infrared
  • fragrance-free
  • goes well with makeup
  • leaves skin glowing
  • vegan

What We Love Less:

  • not water-resistant

VIEW ON AMAZON | $$

Not only will this mineral sunscreen protect you from sun’s rays, but it also shields from the pollution, blue light and infrared radiation. The scentless formula is ultra-light and feels similar to a moisturizer. Because of the subtle peachy tint, there is zero white cast. It works perfectly under makeup as well as on its own. And the best part, it leaves a luminous glow.

Finish: glowy | Tinted: yes | Best for: all skin types | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB), blue light, infrared and pollution | SPF: 50 | Water-resistant: no | Type: mineral | Active ingredients: titanium dioxide 2.7%, zinc oxide 10.0% | Cruelty-free: yes, Murad is a cruelty-free brand. However they are owned by Unilever, a company that is not cruelty-free | Vegan: yes, this is a vegan product. However, Murad is not a vegan brand, since they also sell products that do contain animal (by)products | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, animal testing



16/16

Best Cruelty-Free Face Sunscreen for Glowing Skin:

Tula

Protect + Glow Daily Sunscreen SPF 30

Tula Protect + Glow Daily Sunscreen SPF 30

Why We Love:

  • gel-cream texture
  • lightweight
  • non-greasy
  • no white cast
  • non-comedogenic
  • with skincare ingredients
  • glowy finish
  • faint banana scent
  • also protects from blue light and pollution
  • vegan

What We Don’t Love:

  • pricey
  • not water-resistant

VIEW ON AMAZON | $$$

Tula’s gel-cream sunscreen comes with a lot of good-for-your-skin ingredients like probiotics and papaya to promote healthy-looking skin. Reviewers rave about its lightweight feeling, glowy finish, and faint banana scent. Plus, being oil-free and non-comedogenic this sunscreen will NOT cause a breakout.

Finish: glowy | Tinted: no | Best for: all skin types | Protection: broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB), blue light, pollution | SPF: 30 | Water-resistant: no | Type: chemical | Active ingredients: avobenzone 3%, homosalate 10%, octisalate 5% | Cruelty-free: yes, Tula is a PETA-certified cruelty-free brand | Vegan: yes, this is a vegan product. However Tula is not a vegan brand, since they also sell products that do contain animal (by)products | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, phthalates, mineral oil, silicones, synthetic fragrance, animal testing, animal (by)products


RELATED: The Best Vegan + Cruelty-Free Acne Products


Sunscreen Brands That Are NOT Cruelty-Free

  • Aveeno
  • Avène
  • Banana Boat
  • Blue Lizard
  • CeraVe
  • Cetaphil
  • Clinique
  • Coppertone
  • Dr. Jart+
  • Elizabeth Arden
  • Elta MD
  • Estée Lauder
  • Hawaiian Tropic
  • Innisfree
  • Isdin
  • Lancome
  • La Roche-Posay
  • Neutrogena
  • Olay
  • Peter Thomas Roth
  • Shiseido
  • Sisley Paris
  • SkinCeuticals
  • Vichy

*Note this is not an exhaustive list.

The Basics of Sunscreen

SPF

SPF stands for Sun Protection Factor and is a relative measure of how long sunscreen will protect you from UVB rays. 

If your skin would normally burn after 20 minutes in the sun, applying a sunscreen with SPF 30 will allow you to stay in the sun a factor of 30 times longer, so approximately 10 hours.

This however is only technically speaking and it is very important to reapply every two hours.

Keep in mind that no SPF blocks UVB rays totally, but the higher the SPF, the more it blocks: SPF 15 blocks 93%, SPF 30 blocks 97%, SPF 50 blocks 98% of UVB rays.

UVA / UVB

What many of us don’t know is that SPF only protects us from UVB rays and not from those other harmful UV rays, called UVA rays.

UVB rays cause sunburn and damage to the skin’s outer layers, which can cause surface-level skin cancers.

UVA rays, typically associated with tanning, actually penetrate the skin more deeply. Though we love our tanned faces in the summer, the darkening of the skin is a sign of damage to the lower level of the skin and is simply a reaction of our body to prevent further damage. UVA can cause lower-level skin cancers. It also damages collagen and elastic tissue and is therefore responsible for skin aging.

For these reasons, we need sunscreen that protects us from UVA (aging) and UVB (burning), also known as ‘broad-spectrum’.

Mineral Vs. Chemical Sunscreen

There are mineral sunscreens and chemical sunscreens, but what exactly is the difference?

Simply put, the active ingredients in chemical sunscreen are chemicals, such as avobenzone, octinoxate and oxybenzone.

Mineral (or physical) sunscreens, use natural active ingredients like zinc oxide and titanium dioxide

Chemical sunscreen goes into the skin to offer protection by dissipating UV rays. Mineral sunscreen sits on top of the skin and reflects UV rays by providing a physical barrier between your skin and the sun’s rays.

So Which Is Better?

Both chemical and mineral sunscreens protect us from UV rays that damage our skin. Some prefer a mineral sunscreen, as it is natural and more skin-friendly than a chemical sunscreen.

Chemical sunscreens, on the other hand, are generally better absorbed into the skin, and therefore are less likely to leave behind a white cast.

When you plan on swimming in the ocean, you want to opt for a mineral sunscreen, as the active ingredients in chemical sunscreens, oxybenzone, and octinoxate, are harming the coral reefs.

Reef-Safe Sunscreen

Just like the term cruelty-free, the terms reef-safe and reef-friendly aren’t regulated. This means that a brand can put the label on their packaging, but this doesn’t necessarily mean the sunscreen is in fact reef-safe.

Therefore, it’s always best to look at the ingredients yourself. Though there’s still a lot research to be done around what exactly is affecting the coral reefs, you may to avoid the most linked ingredients, being oxybenzone and octinoxate, as well as octocrylene. The safer way is to opt for a mineral sunscreen, as long as they don’t use nano-particles.

When To Wear Sunscreen

You may not want to hear this, but sunscreen is needed every 365 days of the year, whether it is cloudy or sunny.

Blue Light

Unfortunately, UV light isn’t the only light that can cause damage to our skin. Also the blue light from our phones and laptops can potentially contribute to skin aging. Thankfully, there are now sunscreens that also offer protection from blue light, so you are protected outdoors and indoors.



How Do We Know If A Brand Is Cruelty-Free?

We at Beauty.Beyond.Cruelty always do our research to ensure the brands on this site don’t test on animals or allow others to do so on their behalf.

We check the brand’s cruelty-free status on their website, we reach out to brands, we verify if the brand is certified cruelty-free by PETA or Leaping Bunny, and we check its status with cruelty-free database Cruelty-Free Kitty.

Sometimes, the cruelty-free status of a brand remains unclear. If there is any doubt about a brand being committed to be 100% cruelty-free, the brand will not make it in here.


Parent Company Note

A cruelty-free brand can be owned by a parent company that does test on animals.

Since the products and ingredients of the brand itself are never tested on animals, we at Beauty.Beyond.Cruelty consider these brands to be cruelty-free.

However, we do always mention it below each product when a brand has a parent company that tests on animals.

What Is The Difference Between Cruelty-Free and Vegan?

The term cruelty-free means a product and its ingredients haven’t been tested on animals. Whereas, vegan means a product does not contain any animal ingredients or (by)products.

A product can be cruelty-free and not vegan. In the same way, a product can be vegan and not cruelty-free.

The products in this article are all vegan and cruelty-free.


Why Trust Beauty.Beyond.Cruelty

We at Beauty.Beyond.Cruelty are beauty enthusiasts + devoted animal lovers that pour through the internet to select the best cruelty-free skincare, hair, and makeup products that are here to find.

Our findings are based on reading (lots of) reviews, doing ingredient research as well as testing the products ourselves.


Questions or Remarks?

Do you have any questions or remarks about the best cruelty-free face sunscreens in this article, or do you know a cruelty-free sunscreen that needs to be on this list? We’d love to hear from you in the comments down below.



This post is updated in May 2022, since it was originally published in April 2021.



Up Next: The Best Cruelty-Free + Vegan Mineral Sunscreens for Face and Body