A Guide to the Best Sun Protection Products

A Guide to the Best Sun Protection Products

08.08.2022 Off By manager_1

woman standing on beach

Want to know which SPF is best for what occasion? Our super-pale person can help you choose the best SPF for any occasion.

Being a natural redhead, I have been called every carrot-related name you can think of. My skin is number 1. This means that I don’t tan or have freckles and I can burn if I walk too far to my mailbox. One time, while I was getting my makeup done professionally, the artist had me cover a zit on mine. He used a color he called “pure” white. (He said he only used it on Halloween). It’s not necessary to say that I have extensive experience protecting myself against the sun’s harsh beams. As a brutally pale person for decades, I have tried every sun-protective and SPF product available. These products don’t all have the same quality so here are my top picks to help you avoid burning your skin.

Supergoop! Glowscreen SPF 40!

Matte-white skin can make sunscreen look dull, so many people don’t like it. Glowscreen is a tube-sized product that gives you a flattering TikTok effect. Glowscreen glides on smoothly with just the slightest tint or shimmer, making you look healthier, more radiant, and, yes, even glowier every time you use it.  If Supergoop was closing down (please don’t tell me this, it’s been a long time), I would purchase 40 tubes of Glowscreen to store in an airtight bunker. I’d be interested in hearing from anyone who knows a “bunker guy”.

Land’s End Swim Tee

Although it might seem like a burden, SPF T-shirts are worth the extra weight for fair people. You can protect yourself from the sun’s harsh rays while you swim, paddle, or just bob about. Although it might seem like a lot of fabric it is so lightweight and breathable that you will forget you have it on. SPF clothing doesn’t require you to reapply sunscreen every time you wear it. This one has 50 UPF so you can float on the waves until your friends tell you it’s time for margs.


Before I went to Costa Rica last summer, I was worried about whether I would turn hydrant-red under the Central American sun. I searched the internet for the best, most effective, and least harmful sunscreen. SurfDurt is a Zinc-based, reef-safe sunscreen that covers thickly and stays on (and on …). It feels moisturizing, and it smells great thanks to the coconut oil and cocoa butter. It’s not too tinted so it doesn’t give you that Seventh Seal look. It actually gave my face a little more warmth, almost making me look like I was wearing foundation. Before I went swimming (and yes surfing), I used this all over my body. It didn’t even get a hint of pink on my skin. Miraculous. It’s amazing.

Coolibar Gloves

OK, I’m sorry, I know. But, listen to me. As a woman ages, her hands age faster than any other part of her body. It’s because we forget to apply sunscreen on our hands when we go outside. Hands are exposed to a lot of sun. Driving a car, for example. When I mentioned them to a friend, she said, “Molly, no …’, but I’ll take some social ridicule in return for maximum sun protection.”

EltaMD UV Clear Broad Spectrum SPF46

Although it is somewhat expensive, you can’t really price a daily sunscreen that doesn’t irritate and leaves you looking like a Victorian child in a horror film. This is your luxurious base layer. It can be used with foundation or BB cream to protect the skin. This lotion is ideal for people suffering from chronic skin inflammations (acne and rosacea), but it’s also great for those with sensitive or reactive skin who get cranky when new products are introduced. This is probably due to the niacinamide, which makes this lotion as soothing as an episode on Antiques Roadshow.

Wide Brim Packable Visor

I bought this only-slightly-ridiculous-looking visor several years ago, before a vacation that was going to involve me walking outdoors for long parts of the day. I was looking for a lightweight, thin hat with enough room to hold my ponytail and a large enough brim that would cover my neck and face. This unexpected gem was my companion on many days of trekking. This hat is very packable. It kept its shape even when it was packed in a backpack. You can wash it if yours gets a little grimy from a lot of wear. It’s also affordable at only $10.99. Imagine if your friends got pink ones and wore them to the opening weekend of Barbie’s new movie. There are many possibilities.

Line in the Sand Swim Leggings

“These leggings by Katie’s Shop will be my next water-clothing purchase, as my bottom half also deserves enough sun protection. My top half is the most visible in the mirror. It’s also the one that I am most concerned about. Melanoma can and does occur on the lower legs also. This is particularly frightening because so few people check their skin in this area. These will prevent freckles from growing on my calves or thighs. These leggings look sporty enough that people will think I am naturally athletic. Gotcha, suckers.”