11 Best Expert-Approved Sunscreens For Runners – 2024

Enjoy a carefree jog under the sun while staying protected from the UV rays.

Reviewed by Raisa Zarin, Licensed Esthetician
Written by Shiboli Chakraborti, MA (English Literature), Certified Skin Care Coach
Edited by Krati Darak, MBA, Certified Skin Care Coach
Fact-checked by Medha Deb, Integrated MA  • 

Sunscreens help to protect your skin from harmful sun rays. If you are running or jogging regularly, the chances are high that your skin gets exposed to the Sun, resulting in premature aging. So, the best sunscreen for runners comes in handy to protect your skin. Choosing a broad-spectrum, high-quality, sweat- and water-resistant sunscreen is necessary to ensure that you get the best protection and that this protection does not get washed away with sweat. Look for a sunscreen that offers long-lasting protection from sunburns. In this article, we have provided you with a list of the 11 best sunscreens for runners that provide visible results and are guaranteed to offer adequate sun protection. Check them out below!

Top PicksCheck Price
Best Sweat-Resistant:EltaMD UV Sport Broad-Spectrum SPF 50Price on Amazon
Best Long-Lasting:Australian Gold Extreme Sport Continuous Spray SunscreenPrice on Amazon
Best Water-Resistant:Supergoop! Play SPF 50 Everyday LotionPrice on Amazon
Best Non-Sticky:Blue Lizard Sport Mineral-Based SunscreenPrice on Amazon
Best Non-Greasy:Coola  SPF 50 Sunscreen SprayPrice on Amazon
Best For Daily Use:Aveeno Positively Mineral SunscreenPrice on Amazon
Best Lightweight:Banana Boat Sport Ultra Clear Sunscreen Spray
Price on Amazon
Best Kid-Friendly:Neutrogena Wet Skin Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 50Price on Amazon
Best Quick-Absorbing:Coppertone Sport ClearPrice on Amazon
Best Cruelty-Free:Goddess Garden Sport Natural Mineral SunscreenPrice on Amazon

11 Best Sunscreens For Runners (2024): Reviews & Buying Guide

1. Best Sweat-Resistant:EltaMD UV Sport Broad-Spectrum SPF 50

4.6
EltaMD UV Sport Broad-Spectrum SPF 50 Image: Eltamd
 

The EltaMD UV Sport Broad SPF 50 is suitable for runners, skiers, golfers, swimmers, and other athletes. It does not drip in your eyes, rinse off in water, or sting when you sweat. Raisa Zarin, the lead licensed esthetician at Soul Detox, says, “It is the most long-lasting sunscreen that I have used.” This sunscreen contains 9.0% zinc oxide, 5.0% octisalate, and 7.50% octinoxate.

Zinc oxide is a natural mineral compound that helps reflect both UVA and UVB rays. Tocopheryl acetate or vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps prevent free radical damage. This suncreen also works as an early anti-aging agent. You can apply it on both wet and dry skin. This product is non-comedogenic and free of fragrance, oil, and parabens. Here’s a review video featuring a tester’s experience of using this high SPF product for your understanding.

Item Weight: 7 Ounces | Product Dimensions: 2.25 x 2.25 x 4 inches

Pros
  • Water-resistant for 80 minutes
  • Sweat-resistant
  • Easy and quick-absorbing formula
  • Non-dripping
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Fragrance-free
  • Oil-free
  • Paraben-free
  • UVA and UVB protection
  • Dermatologist-recommended

Cons

  • Expensive

Our Tester's Experience

"This sunscreen doesn't leave a white cast. It offers optimum UV protection and doesn't irritate my skin or eyes. It holds up well without burning my skin. I have noticed that even using a small amount of the product offers reliable coverage to my skin."


protip_icon Quick Tip
Reapply the sunscreen every two hours or more if you are swimming or sweating.

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

The product has received 10,002 positive Amazon reviews from its users, stating its numerous benefits.

2. Best Long-Lasting:Australian Gold Extreme Sport Continuous Spray Sunscreen

4.6
Australian Gold Extreme Sport Continuous Spray Sunscreen Image: Australian Gold

The Australian Gold Extreme Sport Continuous Spray Sunscreen dries quickly and is water- and sweat-resistant. The menthol gives a cooling sensation, and Kakadu plum protects the skin from radicals and increases collagen production. Tea tree essential oil is a powerful antioxidant that helps fight odor. This vegan sunscreen has not been tested on animals, making it an ideal cruelty-free option for runners. Moreover, it does not contain PABA, oxybenzone, phthalate, CFCs, and gluten.

Item Weight: 6 Ounces | Product Dimensions: 2 x 2 x 8.1 inches

Pros
  • Water and sweat-proof for 80 minutes
  • Contains SPF 50
  • Pleasant fragrance
  • Long-lasting
  • Absorbed quickly
  • PABA-free
  • Oxybenzone-free
  • Phthalate-free
  • No CFCs
  • Vegan
  • Cruelty-free
  • Gluten-free

Cons

  • Might cause a burning sensation.

Our Tester's Experience

"I've been applying this sunscreen regularly before stepping out. Ideal for pool, beach, or walks. It is not overly greasy. It works amazingly in protecting my skin as I have noticed no signs of sunburn."


Why We Think It's Worth Buying

This product is so liked by shoppers that it has gained over 8,495 great reviews on Amazon.

3. Best Water-Resistant:Supergoop! Play SPF 50 Everyday Lotion

4.5
Supergoop! Everyday Sunscreen Image: Supergoop

The Supergoop! Play SPF 50 Everyday Lotion protects your skin against UVA and UVB rays. It does not sting and is water and sweat-proof for 80 minutes. This sunscreen contains sunflower and rosemary leaf extracts.

Sunflower extract is rich in beta carotene that helps protect the skin from environmental aggressors. Rosemary leaf extract helps soothe the skin, and rice bran extract prevents UVR damage. The active ingredients are 8%homosalate, 3%avobenzone, 4% octisalate, and 2% octocrylene. This product is lightweight, non-sticky, and octinoxate-free. Click here to check out a detailed personal review of this product.

Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 2.75 x 1.5 inches | Weight: 2.4 Ounces

Pros
  • Water-resistant upto 80 minutes
  • Non-sticky
  • Sweat-proof
  • Lightweight
  • Octinoxate-free

Cons

  • Not suitable for acne-prone skin.

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

There are more than 551 Amazon reviews attesting to the quality of the product and endorsing its value.

EltaMD UV Sport Broad-Spectrum SPF 50
Best Sweat-Resistant
Australian Gold Extreme Sport Continuous Spray Sunscreen
Best Long-Lasting
Supergoop! Play SPF 50 Everyday Lotion
Best Water-Resistant
Weight 7 Ounces 6 Ounces-
Dimensions 2.25 x 2.25 x 4 inches 2 x 2 x 8.1 inches 6.5 x 2.75 x 1.5 inches
Weight-- 2.4 Ounces
Rating
Reviews10,0028,495551
Price$53$10.29$22

4. Best Non-Sticky:Blue Lizard Sport Mineral-Based Sunscreen

4.7
Blue Lizard Sport Mineral-Based Sunscreen Image: Blue Lizard
 

The Blue Lizard Sport Mineral-Based Sunscreen is suitable for sensitive skin types. It contains SPF 30+ and is water-resistant for 80 minutes. This dermatologist-recommended sunscreen is formulated with 5% titanium dioxide and 10% zinc oxide. The product has garnered many positive reviews on e-commerce platforms for being non-greasy, non-sticky, and protecting the skin from 97% of the sun’s rays. This formula is also free of octinoxate, parabens, fragrance, and oxybenzone.

Product Dimensions: 6.93 x 2.76 x 1.34 inches | Weight: 0.02 Ounces.

Pros
    • Suitable for sensitive skin types
    • Dermatologist-recommended
    • Contains SPF 30+
    • Paraben-free
    • Fragrance-free
    • Octinoxate-free
    • Oxybenzone-free
    • Non-greasy
    • Non-sticky

Cons

  • Might leave a chalky residue on the skin.

Our Tester's Experience

"This sunscreen quickly absorbs into the skin and offers optimum UV protection during prolonged sun exposure. However, it might stain, which is a small hitch. It is a perfect sunscreen for outdoor enthusiasts like me."


protip_icon Quick Tip
Wear protective clothing, such as hats, long-sleeved shirts, and sunglasses to avoid exposure to the sun.

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

A whopping 832 reviews on Amazon make it obvious that users genuinely love this product.

5. Best Non-Greasy:Coola  SPF 50 Sunscreen Spray

 

The Coola SPF 50 Sunscreen Spray is non-greasy, fragrance-free, and water-resistant. It contains 70% organic ingredients that are rich in antioxidants. This vegan sunscreen is formulated with 2.9% avobenzone, 4.9% octisalate, 4.0% homosalate, and 9.5% octocrylene. It is cruelty-free, hypoallergenic, and reef-friendly. This product is free of GMOs, gluten, and parabens.

Item Weight: 0.55 Pounds

Pros
  • Fragrance-free
  • Vegan
  • Absorbed quickly
  • Non-greasy
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Reef-friendly
  • GMO-free
  • Gluten-free
  • Paraben-free

Cons

  • Unpleasant smell

Our Tester's Experience

"The sunscreen offers effective UV protection and dries quickly on the skin. It blends easily without leaving greasy residues. A reliable choice!"


6. Best For Daily Use:Aveeno Positively Mineral Sunscreen

4.1
Aveeno Positively Mineral Sensitive Skin Daily Sunscreen – SPF 50 Image: Aveeno

This face and body sunscreen contains 100% naturally sourced zinc oxide, SPF 50, and nourishing oats. It is sweat- and water resistant. The gentle formula is non-greasy and non-irritating. This sunscreen is free of fragrance, parabens, phthalates, and dyes. It is hypoallergenic and suitable for daily use.

Product Dimensions: 1.29 x 2.42 x 6.61 inches | Weight: 0.01 Ounces

Pros
  • Water-resistant
  • Contains SPF 50
  • Sweat-resistant
  • Non-greasy
  • Non-irritating
  • Gentle formula
  • Fragrance-free
  • Paraben-free
  • Phthalate-free
  • Dye-free
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Dermatologist-recommended
  • Suitable for daily use

Cons

  • Expensive

Our Tester's Experience

"This sunscreen soaks into my skin quickly. It provides ample UV protection, even during various outdoor activities. It's reef-safe and isn't greasy. It has zero fumes, so is also ideal for my sensitive nose."


Why We Think It's Worth Buying

More than 5,753 Amazon users have vouched for this amazing product.

7. Best Lightweight:Banana Boat Sport Ultra Clear Sunscreen Spray

4.6
Banana Boat Ultra Sport Clear Sunscreen Spray Image: Banana Boat

The Banana Boat Sport Ultra Clear Sunscreen Spray has a clinically proven formula that provides a broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection with SPF 50+.

The invisible clear spray stays water-resistant for up to 80 minutes, offering endurance against water and sweat. The lightweight spray goes gently onto the skin and offers a non-greasy finish without feeling sticky. It is free from octinoxate and oxybenzone and is also reef-friendly, a perfect combination for any outdoor activities. Reviewers on several e-commerce platforms adore the formula for its consistent coverage.

Product Dimensions: 4.25 x 2.13 x 7.75 inches | Weight: 6 Ounces

Pros
  • Clinically-proven formula
  • Water-resistant
  • Lightweight
  • Non-greasy
  • Reef-friendly
  • Oxybenzone-free
  • Octinoxate-free
  • Value pack of 2

Cons

  • Smell might be bothersome

Our Tester's Experience

"This sunscreen is not greasy, dries fast, and is perfect for athletes. It provides decent sun protection for long day outdoors. It's a reliable choice overall."


Why We Think It's Worth Buying

More than 27,195 rave reviews on Amazon prove why we are so in awe of this product.

8. Best Kid-Friendly:Neutrogena Wet Skin Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 50

 

This sunscreen can be sprayed on wet and dry skin. It is lightweight and water-resistant for 80 minutes and contains 3% avobenzone, 10% homosalate, 5% octisalate, 5% oxybenzone, and 10% octocrylene. The no-drip formula does not leave any white residue on the skin. This product is free of PABA and oil, safe for kids, and suitable for all skin types.

Item Weight: 15 Ounces | Product Dimensions: 6.6 x 6 x 2 inches

Pros
  • Water-resistant for 80 minutes
  • Kid-friendly
  • Oil-free
  • PABA-free
  • Lightweight
  • Suitable for all skin types

Cons

  • Sticky

Our Tester's Experience

"This wet skin spray sunscreen is incredibly convenient, saving me so much time during my summer outings. The best part is that it is easy to apply. It reliably shields my skin during my swim and sweat sessions."


9. Best Quick-Absorbing:Coppertone Sport Clear

4.2
Coppertone Sport Clear Sunscreen Lotion Image: Coppertone Sport
 

The Coppertone Sport Clear is a hydrating sunscreen with SPF 30. It is water-resistant for up to 80 minutes and absorbed quickly into the skin. This sunscreen contains active ingredients like avobenzone, octisalate, homosalate, and octocrylene. It is lightweight and free of PABA, dyes, and synthetic preservatives.

Item Weight: 0.31 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 3.03 x 1.49 x 7.8 inches

Pros
  • Non-sticky
  • Contains SPF 30
  • Water-resistant
  • Absorbed quickly
  • Lightweight
  • Dye-free
  • PABA-free
  • No synthetic preservatives

Cons

  • Unpleasant smell

Our Tester's Experience

"The sunscreen has a lightweight feel and beachy scent. It's clear and leaves no white cast. The best part is that it does not irritate my skin and eyes. I will keep using it."


10. Best Cruelty-Free:Goddess Garden Sport Natural Mineral Sunscreen

 

The Goddess Garden Sport Natural Mineral Sunscreen cruelty-free and comes with SPF 30 protection. This sunscreen contains active vitamin E, sunflower oil, and coconut oil that nourish the skin. It also contains titanium dioxide (6.4%) and zinc oxide (6%) and is water- and sweat-resistant for 80 minutes. This sunscreen is vegan, biodegradable, and reef-safe. It is free of synthetic fragrance, oxybenzone, and parabens.

Product Dimensions: 1.75 x 3 x 5 inches | Weight: 4.8 Ounces

Pros
  • Water-resistant
  • Sweat-resistant
  • Suitable for sensitive skin
  • Contains SPF 30
  • Vegan
  • Biodegradable
  • Reef-safe
  • No synthetic chemicals
  • Cruelty-free (Leaping Bunny certified)

Cons

  • Sticky

11. Best Non-Comedogenic:Zealios Sport Performance Sun Barrier

4.5
Zealios Sport Performance Sun Barrier Image: Zealios

The Zealios Sport Performance Sun Barrier has the FDA’s highest rating for a waterproof sunscreen. It offers a broad spectrum protection against UVA/UVB rays. It has an oil-free formula that applies smoothly and dries clearly, without leaving behind a white cast. The lightweight sunscreen is also non-greasy, non-comedogenic, and free from parabens. In addition, it stays water-resistant for up to 80 minutes.

Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 2.5 x 6 inches | Weight: 3.04 Ounces

Pros
  • Paraben-free
  • Water-resistant
  • Non-greasy
  • Lightweight
  • Oil-free
  • Water-resistant upto 80 minutes
  • Fragrance-free

Cons

  • Not reef-friendly

Our Tester's Experience

"This sunblock prevents burns even under intense sun exposure. It applies easily without leaving any pasty residue. It is one of the few sun products that doesn't irritate my eyes. It also washes off easily at the end of the day. It is a worthwhile investment for skin protection."


Why We Think It's Worth Buying

This product has received 753 reviews from customers on Amazon, indicating its popularity and reliability.

Now that you know what the best sunscreens for runners are, here are a few points to consider before buying one.

What Runners Should Look for In A Sunscreen – Buyer’s Guide

  • Broad Spectrum Protection

UV radiation is of two types – UVA and UVB. Most sunscreens offer protection from UVB rays, which cause sunburns. But you also need protection from UVA rays as they can cause DNA damage, leading to melanoma. UVA rays also increase the signs of premature aging like sagginess, fine lines, and wrinkles. Hence, choose a product that offers both UVA and UVB or broad-spectrum protection.

  • SPF

The SPF (Sun Protection Factor) indicates how long the product can protect your skin from the sun. A sunscreen with SPF 15 protects 15 times longer than the time it takes your skin to burn without sunscreen. It protects the skin from 93% of the sun rays, while SPF 30 from 97%, and SPF 50 from 98% of the rays. No sunscreen can protect the skin from 100% UV rays.

  • Physical Vs. Chemical

Sunscreens are of two types – physical and chemical. Physical sunscreens reflect the radiation away from the skin with their active ingredients, while chemical sunscreens absorb the radiation, preventing it from reaching the skin. Chemical sunscreens contain endocrine disruptors like oxybenzone that affect hormones. Physical or mineral sunscreens contain zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, are long-lasting and non-irritating, and have a long shelf life. 

  • Water-Resistant

Sunscreens that are not water-resistant rub off and may get into the eyes while sweating. Water-resistant products are effective for a particular duration. This time tells you when to reapply the product – it can be between 40 or 80 minutes. Go for water- or sweat-resistant product and reapply when required.

  • Lotion Vs. Spray

Spray sunscreens are easy to apply, especially when you are on the go. But sprays increase the chances of accidental inhalation, leading to lung injury. Besides, it is difficult to create a uniform layer on the skin with a spray. Hence, a lotion would be a safer option.

  • Should Be Safe On The Skin

Ensure that the ingredients are safe for daily use. The Environmental Working Group or EWG rating gives scores to all types of sunscreens. Rank 1 means it is top-rated, and anything between 1 to 3 means it is safe. Hence, check these ratings to make the right decision.

The Bottom Line

Sunscreens protect the skin from harmful sun rays that cause several skin issues like sunburns and skin cancer. Runners have a high chance of getting exposed to the sun resulting in early signs of aging. Therefore, they need sunscreens that are long-lasting, sweat-proof, and water-resistant to protect the skin from free radical damage. Some of these sunscreens have lightweight, non-sticky, and vegan formulas. While the EltaMD UV Sport Broad-Spectrum SPF 50 offers trusted protection with a non-comedogenic and non-drip formula, the Australian Gold Extreme Sport Continuous Spray Sunscreen provides a cooling sensation and fights sweat odor, and the Supergoop! Play SPF 50 Everyday Lotion provides lightweight and nourishing coverage. However, some products may not be suitable for all skin types. Read the buying guide and product reviews before choosing the right product to avoid skin damage. Always ensure to do a patch test before topical application or opt for dermatologist-tested sunscreens if you have sensitive skin type.

Why Trust StyleCraze?

The author, Shiboli Chakraborti, is a certified skin care coach with a penchant for discovering new products that improve your skin. She understands how important it is to protect your skin from daily damage caused by sun exposure, especially if you run regularly. That is why she spent hours browsing through numerous products and their reviews to curate this list of the best sunscreens for runners. These sunscreens get absorbed into the skin easily, are water- and sweat-proof, and offer additional benefits like non-comedogenic properties.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is sunscreen alone enough for my skin?

No. Sunscreen alone is not enough for the skin. Wear full sleeved tops and a hat during day time to protect yourself from the sun.

Spray, powder, or lotion – which is better?

Sunscreen lotions are most effective for the skin, while sprays are easy to use but least recommended.

How do I remove waterproof sunscreen?

Use oil-based makeup remover for wiping waterproof sunscreen.

Which is the right sunscreen for damaged and sensitive skin?

Sunscreens with organic ingredients are suitable for sensitive and damaged skin.

Should I wear sunscreen while running?

Yes, wear waterproof or sweat-proof sunscreen while running.


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