Woman Applying Sunscreen

Not many of us think about using sunscreen this time of year.  Did you know that the snow reflects up to 80 percent of the suns’ UV light?  What does this mean?  Keep that sunscreen out year round.

When choosing the right sunscreen for your skin type, you must chose according to your skin type and skin tone.  It took me a while to find the right sunscreen for my skin type.  Because I have more melanin in my skin, a complex protein skin pigment some sunscreen would it on top of my skin leaving a chalky look.  Many of the sun screens I tried had ingredients like titanium dioxide and zinc oxide.  Because this type of SPF does not absorb into the skin for African American skin, you are left with a chalky looking skin.    Not a good look.

Here are some tips to help you choose the right sun screen for your skin type and skin tone:

Sensitive Skin/ Children

Use a physical sunscreen, it will be less irritating to the skin.   This is because it does not absorb into the skin; instead it reflects and scatters the UV rays.  Look for ingredients with zinc oxide and titanium dioxide.


A physical sunscreen is best, it will not absorb into the skin making it less irritating.

Rosacea prone skin should avoid sunscreens with alcohol.

Acne prone skin should avoid greasy sunscreen, they may increase break outs.  In addition, if using topical acne medications, skin could be sensitized.  In this situation use a light lotion with SPF of 15+ for less drying.

Dry Skin

Moisturizing creams, lotions, or ointments with SPF of 15+ works best for dry skin.

Caucasian Skin

Caucasian skin types can use a physical or chemical sunscreen with SPF of 30+, reapply frequently.

Ethnic Skin

Look for ingredients like, para amino benzonic or PABA and cinnamates with an SPF of 15+.  These ingredients will absorb into the skin reduces the look of pasty skin.

Avoid sunscreens with titanium dioxide, these can look chalky on the skin.

Now you can chose the right sunscreen for your skin type and tone with ease.

Remember, when using sun screens follow the instructions listed on the package.  In addition, the best protection from the sun is a combination of protective clothing, shade, and sun screen.

Lastly, the information in this article is for educational purposes only.

D. Nicole