12 Best Sunscreens For Tattoos That Shield The Inked Area – 2024

Do not let the harsh rays of the Sun fade the luster of your inked emotions.

Written by , MA (Journalism & Mass Communication) Kirtana Divakar MA (Journalism & Mass Communication) Experience: 3 years
Edited by , MA (English Literature), Certified Skin Care Coach Shiboli Chakraborti MA (English Literature), Certified Skin Care Coach Experience: 4 years
Fact-checked by , MA (English Literature) Swathi E MA (English Literature) Experience: 3 years
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If you have recently inked your body and plan to go for a summer getaway, hang on! Do you know your tattoo will be ruined if you go under the sun? Yes, unless you have the best sunscreen protection for tattoos, the UV rays can fade your tattoo’s color, damage your wound, and even result in patchy ink. Why does this happen? Well, inking breaks your skin’s natural barrier and your skin becomes susceptible to harmful UV rays. However, it will not be a problem if you use the right sunscreen.

The right sunscreens form a protective shield on your skin with their broad-spectrum sun protection, reducing the risk of photoaging and skin-related diseases. Wearing sunscreen will help you guard the inked area against the harmful rays of the sun. Moreover, they soothe the skin that needs proper attention and care after inking. So, if you are freshly inked, get yourself a good sunscreen. To make your work easy, we have carefully compiled a list of the best 12 sunscreens to shield your tattoo so that you can bask under the sun without any worries.

Top Picks
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Best Overall:Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Face And Body Stick
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Best Dermatologist Recommended:Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen
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Best For Daily Use:Supergoop! Everyday SPF 50 Sunscreen
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Best For Sports Enthusiasts:Banana Boat Ultra Sport Sunscreen
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Best Affordable:Coppertone Sunscreen Lotion – Ultra Guard
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Best Clinically-Tested:MDSolar Sciences Mineral Tinted Crème SPF 30
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Best Unisex:BullFrog Land Sport Quik Gel Sunscreen SPF 50
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Best Moisturizing:Tattoo Care Sun Protection
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Best Scented:Sun Bum SPF 50 Sunscreen Lotion
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Best For All Ages:Australian Gold SPF 50+ Tattoo Stick
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12 Best Sunscreens For Tattoos You Must Try In 2024

1. Best Overall:Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Face And Body Stick

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Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Stick Face & Body Sunscreen Image: Neutrogena

When it comes to sunblock, the dermatologist-recommended Neutrogena takes the crown for its broad-spectrum protection. And this one is no different. Not a fan of glossy sunscreens? Try this non-greasy, ultra-sheer, and powered by Helioplex technology that protects from direct sunlight and consider your tattoo protected. With SPF 70, this sunscreen stick is lightweight, glides smoothly, is non-comedogenic, and free from PABA. Trusted by doctors, this tattoo safe sunscreen from Neutrogena is water-resistant for up to 80 minutes and can be used while chilling in the pool or at the beach. If you need further convincing, check out this YouTuber’s review and learn about the reviewer’s experience with it.

Item Weight: 0.18 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 1 x 2.1 x 4.28 inches

Pros
  • No-mess application
  • Non-greasy, ultra-sheer, and glides easily
  • Non-comedogenic and PABA-free
  • Formulated with Helioplex technology
  • Lightweight and water-resistant

Cons
  • Some might find that this body stick might break easily.
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Why We Think It's Worth Buying

More than 13,588 rave reviews on Amazon prove why we are so in awe of this product.

2. Best Dermatologist Recommended:Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen

If only you could turn your skin into reflectors, then you wouldn’t have to worry about tans, sunburns, or distorted tattoos! Unfortunately, that’s not possible, but Blue Lizard Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen can protect you with its broad-spectrum SPF 30+. Infused with active zinc oxide, which is hailed as one of the best mineral compounds to block UV rays, this tattoo guard sunscreen has no harsh chemicals like parabens and is free from synthetic fragrances too. This makes this sunscreen gentle and suitable for sensitive and tattooed skin. This new tattoo sunscreen for sensitive skin is reef-safe, lightweight, and water-resistant for up to 40 minutes. You can check this video out if you need to know more about the product and the reviewer’s experience with it.

Item Weight: 10.9 Ounces | Color: ‎Multi | Item Dimensions LxWxH: ‎6 x 5 x 4 inches

Pros
  • Broad-spectrum SPF 30 sun protection
  • Free from parabens and fragrances
  • Suitable for sensitive skin
  • Reef-safe, lightweight, and water-resistant
  • Dermatologist recommended

Cons
  • Some might find that this sunscreen leaves a bit of white residue.

Our Tester's Experience

"This sunscreen applies evenly on my skin and protects it from UV rays. The formula does not make me sweat. It stays put for 80 minutes at a stretch without smudging. The product does not irritate my skin, and it is free of any chemical fragrance."


3. Best For Daily Use:Supergoop! Everyday SPF 50 Sunscreen

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Supergoop! Everyday Sunscreen Image: Supergoop

Sounds cute, doesn’t it? This sunscreen from Supergoop Everyday SPF 50 Sunscreen is powerful with broad-spectrum SPF 50 sun protection, which helps protect your skin from UVR-induced damages while preventing your tattoo from fading prematurely. Recommended for daily use, what makes this a good sunscreen for tattoos is its oil-free, weightless, and ultra-hydrating creamy formula. Plus, it does not clog pores. And lest we forget, it is water-resistant and safe to use on your child’s skin as well! To find out more about this product, check out this video review and learn about the tester’s experience using it.

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

Pros
  • Protects from UV-induced damage
  • Oil-free, weightless, and non-comedogenic formula
  • Infused with sunflower and rosemary leaf extracts
  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Waterproof upto 80 minutes
  • Dermatologist-tested
  • Not tested on animals

Cons
  • Some might find the texture of this sunscreen a bit thick.

protip_icon Did you know?
Skin and tattoo pigment are both damaged by sunlight. Your tattoo will deteriorate over time due to UVA and UVB sun damage, resulting in the colors fading and the definition fuzzying.

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Why We Think It's Worth Buying

With over 551 Amazon acclaimed reviews, this product is sure to find a place in everyone’s shopping bag.

4. Best For Sports Enthusiasts:Banana Boat Ultra Sport Sunscreen

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Banana Boat Ultra Sport Sunscreen Lotion Image: Bananaboat

Are you planning to indulge in water sports throughout the summer? Protect your tattooed skin with Banana Boat Ultra Sport Sunscreen Lotion! Indulging in outdoor sports means prolonged exposure to harmful radiation. This broad-spectrum SPF 50 sunscreen ensures maximum protection from UVA/UVB rays, and it is clinically proven. Also, its lightweight and breathable formula won’t weigh you down but will protect your tattoo while you have fun in the sun. Sweat and water-resistant, this sunscreen lotion for tattoo maintenance guarantees to stay whether you are in the pool, ocean water, sand, or extreme heat. It is a must-have for all sports enthusiasts!

Item Weight: 0.5 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 7.45 x 2.25 x 1.55 inches

Pros
  • Suitable for prolonged sun exposure
  • Designed for daily use
  • Lightweight, breathable, and water-resistant
  • Clinically proven to protect from UVA/UVB rays

Cons
  • Some might find that the consistency of this sunscreen is a bit thick.

Our Tester's Experience

"It is a good product both for everyday use and during extended outdoor activities. It is water- and sweat-proof and offers optimum sun protection. I love that it does not leave any greasy residue and is non-sticky. The formula feels lightweight and does not cause burns."


5. Best Affordable:Coppertone Sunscreen Lotion – Ultra Guard

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4.5
Coppertone Sunscreen Lotion – Ultra Guard Image: Coppertone

If you are going to stay out in the sun for long, you’ll need something strong to shield your tattoo. Coppertone Sunscreen Lotion – Ultra Guard is known for its intense defense that blocks UVA/UVB rays up to 98%! With SPF 70, it stays waterproof for up to 80 minutes, which means even if you sweat, your sunblock stays intact, making it a must-have on a sunny day. It nourishes the skin and offers sunburn prevention with vitamin E and other moisturizing ingredients.

Product Dimensions: 6.95 x 2.8 x 1.55 inches | Weight: 10 Ounces

Pros
  • Intense defense formula
  • Blocks up to 98% of sun rays
  • Water-resistant for up to 80 minutes
  • Ensures tattoo longevity
  • Nourishing formula

Cons
  • Might not be suitable for sensitive skin types.
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Why We Think It's Worth Buying

It has gained over 4,007 positive reviews on Amazon, making it an all-time best-seller.

6. Best Unisex:BullFrog Land Sport Quik Gel Sunscreen SPF 50

Fight those harsh UV rays with this extremely light, non-greasy, no-mess gel sunblock that has both men and women raving! It absorbs into the skin faster than other lotions, providing it with a matte finish, and offers broad-spectrum UV protection with SPF 50. It is sweat-resistant for up to 80 minutes. Promoted as long-lasting by the brand, this new tattoo sunscreen assures effective protection for tattooed skin while also nourishing skin with antioxidants and other rich plant extracts.

Item Weight: 0.3 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 7.25 x 9 x 1.6 inches

Pros
  • Ultra-light, quick-absorbing, no-mess formula
  • Broad-spectrum SPF 50 sun protection
  • Water and sweat-resistant for upto 80 minutes
  • Long-lasting and nourishing

Cons
  • Some might find that this sunscreen doesn’t wash off easily.

7. Best Moisturizing:Tattoo Care Sun Protection

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4.5

Say goodbye to unsightly faded tattoos with this versatile sunscreen, which not only provides broad-spectrum sun protection but also moisturizes and highlights tattoo colors so you can flaunt your ink art with style. Dermatologically-tested for safety, this SPF sunscreen for tattoos has high vitamin E levels, which provide deep moisturization and prevent your skin from drying out in the sun. This cream is water-resistant for up to 80 minutes, making it the ideal pick for a sunny day at the beach.

Skin Type: All, Oily, Sensitive, Dry, Normal | | Item Weight: 0.08 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 1.07 x 1.07 x 4.13 inches | Weight: 1.28 Ounces

Pros
  • Broad-spectrum SPF 30 sun protection
  • Free of parabens and harmful chemicals
  • Water resistant up to 80 minutes
  • Cruelty-free

Cons
  • Some might find the consistency of this sunscreen a bit sticky.

8. Best Scented:Sun Bum SPF 50 Sunscreen Lotion

Don’t just enjoy the summer, smell like it, all thanks to Sun Bum SPF 50 Sunscreen Lotion. A non-comedogenic lotion with SPF 50, it offers maximum protection to all skin types, even tattooed skin and keeps you refreshed all day. Planning a getaway to the beach? Trust Sun Bum’s water-resistant and oil-free formula to keep your skin protected from intense sun rays. This sunscreen is hypoallergenic and free from parabens and gluten, making it an ideal choice for allergy prone inked skin.

Item Weight: 0.6 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 4 x 6 x 2 inches | Weight: 9.6 Ounces

Pros
  • Pleasant fragrance and lightweight
  • Non-comedogenic ingredients
  • Broad-spectrum SPF 50 sun protection from UVA/UVB rays
  • Water-resistant and hypoallergenic
  • Infused with skin-nourishing antioxidants.
  • No animal testing

Cons
  • Some might find that the texture of this sunscreen is a bit greasy.
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Why We Think It's Worth Buying

The product has more than 22,214 reviews and is a top choice all around the world.

9. Best For All Ages:Australian Gold SPF 50+ Tattoo Stick

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Australian Gold SPF 50+ Tattoo Stick Image: Australian Gold

This one’s a keeper for all those mini tattoos! Formulated with Ultimate Fade Protection, Australian Gold SPF 50+ Tattoo Stick’s color retention and anti-fade features will not disappoint you. The sunscreen ingredients are nourishing that will make your beautiful body art look brighter and as good as new! This sunscreen is suitable for all skin types and is designed for daily use, making it an ideal choice for the entire family. Portable and easy-to-use, try it, and you’ll thank us later!

Skin Type: All | | Product Dimensions: 2.95 x 1.57 x 0.79 inches | Weight: 0.49 Ounces

Pros
  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Broad-spectrum SPF 50+ sun protection
  • Anti-discoloration and anti-fade protection
  • Portable and easy-to-use.

Cons
  • Some might find that this tattoo stick is a bit small to apply on big tattoos.

10. Best Quick-Absorbing Formula:La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt-In Sunscreen

When it comes to stepping out in the sun, always play safe. The damage-inducing sun rays can be harmful for sensitive or tattooed skin. While other sunscreens assure protection from UVA and UVB rays, La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt-In Sunscreen has Cell-OX Shield XL Technology that neutralizes free radicals, thereby minimizing skin damage. An antioxidant formula, this melt-in milk formula is rich, smooth, and fast absorbing and imparts a velvety feel to your skin. Trusted by dermatologists for effective skincare worldwide, you can enjoy the effects of this sunblock in water for up to 80 minutes!

Item Weight: 0.31 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 2.75 x 2 x 4 inches

Pros
  • Protects from UV rays and free radicals
  • Silky-smooth texture
  • Quick-absorbing formula
  • Dermatologist-tested
  • Hypoallergenic and non-comedogenic
  • Free from parabens and fragrances
  • Water-resistant for upto 80 minutes.
  • Allergy tested

Cons
  • Some might find that the scent of this product is a bit overpowering.
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Why We Think It's Worth Buying

The product has received 9,286 positive Amazon reviews from its users, stating its numerous benefits.

11. Best Fragrance-Free:Waxhead Skin Nourishing Sunscreen

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Waxhead Skin Nourishing Sunscreen Image: Waxhead

If you’re looking to nourish your skin with a clean sunscreen which is not only good for you, but is also safe for the oceans, here’s your pick. Reef and ocean safe, this sunscreen allows you to enter the water guilt-free while staying protected against harmful sun exposure. Formulated with non-nano zinc oxide, this mineral sunscreen is infused with jojoba oil, shea butter, and vitamin E which deeply moisturize and hydrate the skin, and will also have your tattoo looking its absolute best.

Item Weight: 4 Ounces | Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 2.57 x 6.38 inches

Pros
  • Broad-spectrum SPF 32 sun protection
  • Made with certified organic and non-GMO ingredients
  • Non-toxic and fragrance-free
  • Free of petrochemicals and oxybenzone
  • Reef and ocean safe
  • Cruelty-free.

Cons
  • Some might find that this sunscreen leaves a bit of white residue.

protip_icon Pro Tip
Before using any sunscreen on your new tattoo, it is best to wait for 4–6 weeks. This period allows the tattoo to completely heal so the skin’s epidermis can recover and protect the delicate dermis layer.

12. Best Moisturizing:Tattoo Care Sun Protection

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This summer, go get that tan without letting the sun ruin your tattoo! While you enjoy the glorious tanning, let your ink bask in the nourishment of Tattoo Care Sunscreen’s natural ingredients and water-resistant sun protection formula with SPF 30+. From preventing fading to moisturizing the tattoo with bisabolol, calendula and vitamin E, this sunblock helps with tattoo aftercare and promotes quick healing too. Hypoallergenic and free from parabens, this sunscreen is ideal for those with sensitive skin problems.

Skin Type: All, Oily, Sensitive, Dry, Normal | | Item Weight: 0.08 Pounds | Product Dimensions: 1.07 x 1.07 x 4.13 inches | Weight: 1.28 Ounces

Pros
  • Prevents fading of tattoo
  • Hypoallergenic and free from parabens
  • Promotes quick healing and prevents drying
  • Water-resistant
  • Soothes itchiness and inflammation.

Cons
  • Some might find that the consistency of this sunscreen is a bit thick.

Now that we’ve had a look at our list of the 13 best sunscreens to protect your tattoo in 2024, let us look at some things to consider when picking a sunscreen to ensure your tattoo keeps looking as good as new.

How To Choose The Best Sunscreen For Tattoos To Prevent Fading

Sun protection

Applying an appropriate sunscreen is essential when spending any time in the sun. One of the first things to consider when picking a sunscreen to protect your tattoo is the level of sun protection required. Ideally, you should choose a product that offers broad-spectrum sun protection against harmful UVA/UVB rays. Generally, it is recommended to s a sunscreen labeled as at least SPF 30. It is essential to apply it generously on your tattoo 15 minutes before exposure, making sure you reapply every 2 hours.

Ingredient list

A quick look at the ingredient list will tell you volumes about the product you’re picking. If you’re environmentally conscious, select a product that is reef and ocean safe and made without harmful ingredients like oxybenzone and octinoxate. If you’re looking for a sunscreen, which protects your tattoo while nourishing the skin, pick a mineral sunscreen made with non-nano zinc oxide and enriched with skin-loving ingredients like aloe vera, shea butter, and coconut oil. They will infuse moisture into dry and dehydrated skin and make it soft and supple.

Texture

When picking a suitable sunscreen, the texture of the product is vital to consider and is generally a matter of personal preference. If your tattoo is small and easily accessible, you can consider a stick sunscreen which you can quickly roll on before you head out in the sun. For tattoos in hard-to-reach areas like the back, a spray sunscreen might be more appropriate. If you want a sunscreen that doubles up as a moisturizer, pick a thick, creamy sunscreen that nourishes and protects your skin.

In addition to this, you may also look for labels like “dermatologist-tested,” “dermatologist-recommended, “ and “clinically proven” to ensure that the sunscreen is completely safe for your skin. Further, you may also check reviews of the product you intend to buy to help you figure out the right product for you.

The Bottom Line

Tattoos reveal your taste in art, passion, and stories of your life. But these tattoos might fade away if not taken care of properly, and the results might be severe when you head out on hot days. That is why you need the best sunscreen protection for tattoos. The Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Face And Body Stick is great for those looking for a weightless, non-shiny finish, while the Supergoop Everyday SPF 50 Sunscreen is ideal for those with sensitive skin. But if you are looking for a formula that helps brighten tattoo colors, try the Australian Gold SPF 50+ Tattoo Stick. These sunscreens offer after-sun care and are formulated to protect your tattoos and prevent UV rays from penetrating the skin. Their lightweight and water-resistant formulas are easy to apply and tested by dermatologists. Some of the sunscreens in the list are also vegan and have not undergone animal testing. You can pick a sunscreen that doubles up as a primer. It will ensure lasting UV protection while offering your skin a smooth base. Some sunscreens come with great SPF value, while others minimize skin damage. These potent formulas also keep your skin hydrated and are best for tattoo preservation. But consider sunscreens that are non-greasy and avoid products that have thick consistency as they might not absorb well. Also, perform a patch test before using a new sunscreen to ensure it does not irritate your skin.

Why Trust StyleCraze?

Kirtana Divakar, the author of this article, is a skin care aficionado. She likes experimenting with the latest trends and reviewing them for her readers. She used her knowledge and expertise in this field and studied user feedback to compile the list of the best sunscreens for tattooed skin. These sunscreens help soothe the skin and protect the tattooed area from the sun’s harmful rays.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is SPF 30 enough for tattoos?

Generally, SPF 30 will provide you and your tattoo with adequate protection against harmful sun exposure as long as it is reapplied every 2 hours.

Are zinc sunscreens bad for tattoos?

Sunscreens made with zinc oxide are recommended for tattoos as they are less likely to irritate the skin while providing broad spectrum sun protection.

Which sunscreen is best for tattoos?

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Face And Body Stick is one the best sunscreens to provide good nourishment for your skin and tattoo.

Does any sunscreen work for tattoos?

Yes, sunscreens with 30SPF work fine for skin with tattoos.

Will sunscreen fade my tattoo?

No. Sunscreen will protect the tattoo from fading due to sunlight exposure. You must wear sunscreen to safeguard and hydrate your skin.

Can I put sunscreen on a 3-week-old tattoo?

No, wait for four to six weeks after tattooing to wear a sunscreen on the tattoo.

Can I go in the sun with a new tattoo?

No, exposing your fresh tattoo to the sun will make it fade faster.

How do I know when my tattoo is fully healed?

By the end of the 4th week, you’ll have slight to no itchiness around your tattoo. This is when your tattoo will have healed completely.


Kirtana Divakar

Kirtana DivakarCommerce Writer

Kirtana has a postgraduate degree in mass communication and journalism from St. Joseph’s College, Bengaluru, and 3 years of professional experience. She developed a deep passion for writing after reading the brilliant works of Enid Blyton and Roald Dahl and has chosen a career that is driven by creativity. She believes in communicating effectively with a personal touch and writes...read full bio