15 Top-Rated Sunscreens For Rosacea In 2021

by Oyendrila Kanjilal
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Rosacea – sounds familiar? Probably not to all of you out there. But to those dealing with it, rosacea is nothing less than their worst nightmare.

Top 10 Products
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ZincO Cream
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Synchroline Rosacure Intensive Cream
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Daylong Extreme Sun Lotion
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Thinkbaby Body & Face Sunscreen
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Murad Environmental Shield
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Elta MD Skincare UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF46 Facial Sunscreen
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La Roche-Posay Anthelios Clear Skin Dry Touch Sunscreen
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DRMTLGY Broad Spectrum SPF 45 Anti-Aging Sunscreen
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Neutrogena Sheer Zinc Face Mineral Sunscreen SPF 50
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Vanicream Sunscreen Sport For Sensitive Skin SPF 35
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Rosacea is a skin disease that causes inflammation in the central part of the face, particularly the skin around the nose and cheeks, and sometimes extends to the area around the chin and forehead. In this post, we will discuss in-depth how one can control rosacea that arises from sun exposure. What you are looking to purchase is a sunscreen that contains zinc oxide and titanium oxide, both of which act as key ingredients that aid in avoiding flare-ups. Let’s take a look at the top 15 sunscreens for rosacea in 2021. Read on to know more.

What Is Rosacea?

Rosacea is a chronic inflammatory skin condition affecting 5%-10% of the population. It causes redness and visible blood vessels in your face and may also result in small, red, pus-filled bumps. This condition is most prevalent among people aged between 30–50 years, with fair skin and northern European ethnic origin. However, rosacea can also emerge at any age and in people of Asian and African ethnic backgrounds (1).

These signs and symptoms may flare-up for weeks to months and then go away for a while. Rosacea is often mistaken for acne, other skin problems, or natural ruddiness. There’s no cure for rosacea, but the use of sunscreens or some dermatological treatments can minimize the signs and symptoms.

The blood vessels in our face and our body are held together with tissues containing elastin and collagen. The harmful UV rays destroy these tissues and rupture the thin vessels and expose them to the skin’s surface. Hence, it would be best to use an effective sunscreen to prevent rosacea flare-ups.

Let’s now check out the top 15 sunscreens for rosacea.

15 Top-Rated Sunscreens For Rosacea

1. ZincO Cream

The ZincO Cream is suitable for sensitive skin. It has SPF 20 and offers maximum protection from both UVA and UVB rays. The cream is beneficial for those prone to flushing episodes. It is enriched with 14.5% microfine dimethicone-coated zinc oxide that soothes the skin and helps reduce visible flushing. The product has a subtle, natural tint that provides sheer coverage to minimize visible redness.

Pros

  • Sheer coverage
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Contains parabens, PEG, and phenoxyethanol

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2. Synchroline Rosacure Intensive Cream

The Rosaceae Intensive Cream by Synchroline has a broad spectrum SPF 30. It reduces redness by normalizing visible, dilated blood vessels while strengthening the skin. The sunscreen contains silymarin that minimizes erythema and rejuvenates and re-hydrates your skin. It also helps to raise the “Trigger Tolerance” threshold of the skin to minimize flare-ups.

Pros

  • Reduces redness
  • Dermatologist-tested

Cons

None

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3. Daylong Extreme Sun Lotion

The Daylong Extreme Sun Lotion with SPF 50+ offers long-lasting protection from the harsh UVA and UVB rays and suits sensitive skin. The unique liposomal formulation routes sun filters and works on the epidermis to prevent cellular damage and photoaging. It is enriched with aloe vera and vitamin E that hydrate and nourish your skin.

Pros

  • Non-greasy
  • Minimizes hyperpigmentation
  • Preservative-free
  • Waterproof

Cons

  • May clog the pores
  • May cause allergic reactions

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4. Thinkbaby Body & Face Sunscreen

The Thinkbaby Body & Face Sunscreen is a melon-scented product, free of harmful biological chemicals and safe for sensitive skin. It has a mineral-based formula with 20% zinc oxide and is water-resistant for up to 80 minutes. The stick sunscreen is easy to apply and travel-friendly. It is absorbed quickly into your skin without any greasy feeling or obtrusive smell.

Pros

  • Pleasant fragrance
  • Water-resistant
  • Quick absorbing formula
  • Cruelty-free
  • Paraben-free
  • PABA-free
  • Avobenzone-free
  • Oxybenzone-free
  • Phthalate-free

Cons

  • Does not spread easily

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5. Murad Environmental Shield

The Murad Environmental Shield is a mineral-based sunscreen with a broad spectrum SPF 50. It is developed with the Environmental Protection Technology that shields the skin from UV damage and prevents premature aging. The polymer matrix in the formula inhibits the penetration of toxins. It also has a subtle color-correcting tint to even out the skin.

Pros

  • No stinging sensation
  • Non-oily formula
  • Subtle tint

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Contains urea, phenoxyethanol, and PEG

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6. Elta MD Skincare UV Clear Broad Spectrum SPF46 Facial Sunscreen

This sunscreen is suitable for those suffering from skin discoloration, rosacea, acne-prone-skin, etc. and is recommended by dermatologists. It is an oil-free formula and feels light on the skin. It protects the skin against UVB and UVA rays. Skin specialists advise reapplying this sunscreen every 2 hours to avoid flare-ups and other skin issues that arise from sun exposure. This sunscreen leaves your skin feeling soft and supple.

Pros:

  • Calms and protects sensitive skin
  • Does not contain perfume or parabens
  • Broad-spectrum sunscreen
  • Protects skin from UV rays

Cons:

  • Does not possess moisturizing properties

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7. La Roche-Posay Anthelios Clear Skin Dry Touch Sunscreen

Dermatologists recommend this sunscreen by La Roche-Posay for sensitive and oily skin types. It comes with SPF 60 with broad-spectrum protection. This sunscreen absorbs oil in the facial pores, even in humid conditions. It is recommended to apply this sunscreen 15 minutes before venturing out and to reapply it after 80 minutes of swimming, sweating, or after your face has been towel-dried. Those with rosacea need to follow this rule to avoid the occurrence of rashes.

Pros:

  • Formulated using Cell-Ox Shield Technology
  • Dermatologically-tested
  • Oxybenzone and octinoxate-free formula
  • Oil-free
  • Paraben-free
  • Fragrance-free
  • Non-comedogenic

Cons:

  • Not suitable for children under 6 months of age unless recommended by a doctor

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8. DRMTLGY Broad Spectrum SPF 45 Anti-Aging Sunscreen

DRMTLGY is suitable for all skin types and provides advanced sun protection for every skin tone. This dermatologically-tested sunscreen helps in improving the overall appearance of your skin, leaving it feeling pampered and rejuvenated. It acts as an anti-aging formula, hydrates skin, and also protects against UVA, UVB, and infrared rays. It is light on the skin, doesn’t leave behind any residue, and does not cause breakouts. This sunscreen should be applied 30 minutes before sun exposure and should be reapplied every 2-3 hours.

Pros:

  • Paraben and sulfate-free
  • Produced in an FDA regulated facility
  • Cruelty-free
  • Contains zinc oxide and offers broad-spectrum sun protection
  • Oil-free and fragrance-free
  • 60-day money-back guarantee

Cons:

  • Slightly expensive
  • Not hypoallergenic

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9. Neutrogena Sheer Zinc Face Mineral Sunscreen SPF 50

This product is formulated using 100% naturally sourced zinc oxide, making it recommended for skin affected by rosacea. It is gentle on the skin and delivers twice the sun protection as compared to other products and produces an invisible coat on the face. Hence, it can be applied under makeup. It is highly recommended by dermatologists as it hydrates skin, prevents signs of aging, and does not cause any break-outs.

Pros:

  • Water-resistant
  • Paraben and phthalate-free
  • Free from dyes and harsh chemicals
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Rich in antioxidants

Cons:

  • Slightly expensive as compared to other sunscreens

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10. Vanicream Sunscreen Sport For Sensitive Skin SPF 35

Vanicream Sunscreen Sport is highly recommended for those who love to indulge in outdoor activities. This dermatologically-tested formula helps to avoid getting sunburned. It is suitable for use on sensitive skin and is an excellent choice for those suffering from rosacea as it helps to reduce or contain flare-ups. It is recommended to apply this sunscreen evenly on the skin before sun exposure and reapply it every 2 hours.

Pros:

  • Free from dyes
  • Fragrance-free
  • Paraben-free
  • Free from oil and gluten
  • Provides broad-spectrum protection
  • Water-resistant for up to 80 minutes

Cons:

  • Slightly expensive
  • Not suitable for children under 6 months of age unless approved by a doctor

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11. Tizo3 Tinted Mineral Primer/Sunscreen SPF40

Tizo3 Mineral Primer/Sunscreen with SPF40 is ideal for daily use and is formulated adhering to pharmaceutical standards. It contains zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, making it suitable for those with rosacea. This formula is light on the skin and has a silky-matt finish. It helps fight the signs of aging and acts as a barrier against sunburn. For best results, this product needs to be applied 15 minutes before sun exposure, after the face has been thoroughly moisturized and then reapplied as required.

Pros:

  • Does not contain chemical-sunscreen filters
  • Free from dyes
  • Fragrance-free
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Free from parabens
  • Photostable

Cons:

  • Not suitable for kids under 6 months of age

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12. Eau Thermale Avene Skin Recovery Cream

This product is suitable for hypersensitive skin and makes it an apt choice for those having rosacea. The main ingredient in this product range – Avene Thermal Spring Water, helps to soothe skin and minimize skin-sensitivity, making it one of the most popular products for sensitive skin. When applied to your skin, it helps soothe redness and irritation. It is recommended to apply this lotion on the face and neck, every morning and evening, after cleansing your skin thoroughly.

Pros:

  • Sterile formula
  • Non-comedogenic and non-hypoallergenic
  • Paraben-free
  • Free from preservatives
  • Fragrance-free
  • Does not contain dyes.

Cons:

  • Can make your skin slightly greasy

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13. CeraVe Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 50

This product with SPF 50, is a 100 % mineral-based sunscreen. It falls in the category of physical sunscreens, which makes it perfect for those suffering from rosacea. It contains zinc and titanium dioxide, which efficiently block UVA and UVB rays of the sun and protect the skin from a rosacea flare-up. It is formulated using ceramides that keep your skin hydrated all day long, leaving it feeling soft and supple.

Pros:

  • Does not contain oxybenzone
  • Paraben-free
  • Fragrance-free
  • Allergy tested
  • Non-comedogenic

Cons:

  • Leaves a white residue on skin

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14. Blue Lizard Australian Mineral-Based Sunscreen

Trusted by dermatologists, this sunscreen lotion with SPF 30+ has proved its worth for the past 20 years. It is safe for daily use as it is made using natural moisturizers and antioxidants. Blue Lizard Australian Sunscreen is specially formulated to help the skin deal with harsh weather conditions and excess sunlight. The presence of zinc oxide in this sunscreen makes it suitable for those dealing with rosacea. Also, being mineral-based, it provides safer and better sun protection.

Pros:

  • Free from parabens
  • Oil-free
  • Fragrance-free
  • Provides a broad spectrum protection from UV rays

Cons:

  • The product is slightly expensive

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15. SkinMedica Essential Defense Mineral Shield SPF35

SkinMedica Essential Defense Mineral Shield with SPF 35 is perfect for those having rosacea and other sensitive skin conditions. It is a mineral-based sunscreen that is light and provides the desired sun protection. This sunscreen should be applied in the morning and 15 minutes before stepping out in the sun.

Pros:

  • Non-comedogenic
  • Oil-free
  • Fragrance-free
  • Paraben-free
  • Hypoallergenic

Cons:

  • Makes your skin greasy

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These are the top sunscreens that you can get for rosacea-prone skin. It is important to know how to identify the signs and symptoms and things to keep in mind before picking a sunscreen for your skin. Scroll down.

How Do You Know If You Have Rosacea?

The symptoms of rosacea include:

  • Facial Redness: Rosacea causes a persistent redness around the nose and the cheeks due to the ruptured blood vessels.
  • Swollen Red Bumps: People with rosacea-prone skin also develop pus-filled pimples on their face that look very similar to acne.
  • Eye Problems: Rosacea may cause dry, irritated, swollen eyes and red, swollen eyelids. This is also known as ocular rosacea. These symptoms often precede other skin symptoms of rosacea.
  • Enlarged Nose: Rhinophyma or enlarged nose is a common symptom of rosacea. In this condition, the nose skin thickens, and it appears enlarged.

Rosacea cannot be treated. However, you can manage rosacea symptoms. Here is how.

What Can You Do To Reduce Rosacea?

  • Use a gentle redness-reducing cleanser.
  • Avoid soaps that have artificial fragrances and alcohol-based products.
  • Pat your face dry gently or let it dry naturally.
  • Use a sunblock with a minimum SPF 30. Wear a hat or use an umbrella on sunny days to prevent sun exposure.
  • Use an anti-redness moisturizer.
  • Avoid alcohol and stimulants such as caffeine and spicy foods, as they may cause rosacea flare-ups.

Protecting the skin from UV rays is crucial to prevent rosacea flare-ups. Before picking a sunscreen, here are a few pointers to keep in mind.

Ingredients To Look For In Sunscreens For Rosacea

The ideal sunscreen agents should be safe, chemically inert, non-irritating, non-toxic, photostable, and able to provide complete protection to the skin against UV damage.

Check for physical or non-chemical sunscreens. Look for ingredients like:

  • Zinc oxide
  • Titanium dioxide

Avoid chemical sunscreens containing:

  • Avobenzone
  • Oxybenzone
  • Other chemical filters like octocrylene, octisalate, octinoxate
  • Parabens and phthalates
  • Phenoxyethanol (may sensitize the skin)
  • Alcohol

Also, avoid any ingredient that you might be allergic to. Here are some more pointers to help you choose the right sunscreen.

How To Choose The Best Sunscreen For Rosacea

  • Choose A Sunscreen with SPF 30 to SPF 50

Prolonged UV ray exposure may cause skin issues. A sunscreen with a minimum of SPF 30 offers up to 97% protection to your skin.

  • Check The Key Ingredients

Check the ingredient list to ensure it does not contain any chemical sunscreen. Avoid any product that contains artificial fragrances and preservatives.

  • Consider Your Skin Type

Rosacea-prone skin can be sensitive to a lot of ingredients. Look for a sunscreen that is mainly developed for rosacea-prone skin or sensitive skin. You may look for soothing ingredients like aloe vera and green tea. Consider buying a hypoallergenic formula.

  • Avoid Alcohol

Alcohol dries up the skin and may cause allergic reactions. Buy alcohol-free sunscreen to avoid irritating rosacea-prone skin.

Once the sunscreen ticks all or most of these boxes, rest assured you are good to go!

  • Perform A Patch Test

Before buying sunscreen for rosacea-prone skin, perform a patch test to ensure it is safe for your skin. Apply a small amount of sunscreen on your wrist or inner elbow (where the skin flexes). Wait for 48 to 72 hours to see if there is any reaction or not. If your skin does not react, you may use the product.

Everybody deserves fun in the sun. No skin condition or health issue should act as a barrier between your choice of leisure activity and your happiness. Be it swimming, hiking, outdoor picnic, or cycling in the wee hours of the morning – do as your heart desires, for these 15 sunscreen lotions have you covered. They provide sun protection and also help in hydrating the skin and combating early signs of aging.

Expert’s Answers For Readers’ Questions

Does sunscreen help rosacea?

Yes, sunscreen that is formulated for sensitive and hypersensitive skin does help rosacea. It creates a protective layer on your face and blocks the UVB, UVA, and infrared rays of the sun, thus preventing flare-ups and irritation.

Is Neutrogena sunscreen good for rosacea?

Yes, branded products like Neutrogena are good for rosacea since they don’t contain harsh chemicals and strong fragrances that can irritate the skin.

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Oyendrila Kanjilal has a Master's Degree in English Literature. As a Beauty and Lifestyle writer, she writes about everything that the modern woman needs to know about grooming and self-care. She also reviews makeup, skin care, and lifestyle products to help readers make the best purchase. She is a trained classical dancer and loves binge-watching web series of different genres.
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