15 Best Sunscreens for Oily Skin 2023 for a Shine-Free Complexion, According to Dermatologists

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This may not be news to you, but applying SPF is the single most important skin-care tip that shields against a whole host of skin-care dilemmas (fine lines, wrinkles, and hyperpigmentation at best — and skin cancer at worst). The problem? Many people with oilier complexions have yet to discover the best sunscreens for oily skin — until now, that is. If you’ve been skipping sunscreen due to the oil-enhancing drawbacks certain SPF formulas have on your skin type, these mattifying formulations are guaranteed to become one of your favorite skin-care products ever.

So, how can those who are Team Oily Skin finally uncover a holy grail SPF? According to Corona Del Mar-based board-certified dermatologist Stefani Kappel, MD, you should be looking for oil-free, mineral sunscreens that contain zinc oxide or titanium dioxide. “These not only offer better protection against UVA and UVB rays, but they’re naturally less comedogenic (acne-causing) than chemical sunscreens,” she says. You’ll also want to steer clear of formulas that contain pore-clogging oils (like coconut, soybean, and wheat germ oil). These may activate sebum production, which can be a problem for a skin type that already has larger oil-producing sebaceous glands.

Even if your skin skews oily, we’re here to tell you that it is possible to avoid lasting sun damage and not have to settle for greasy skin in the process. That thick, goopy SPF your mother slathered on you as a kid? Not the case for the feather-light SPFs of today, many of which are oily-skin friendly. You just have to know what to look for. In some cases, you can combine your moisturizer and sunscreen steps into one non-greasy, lightweight formula, so you never forget.

Luckily, we did all the grunt work and found the best sunscreens for oily skin that’ll do everything they’re supposed to and nothing they’re not. Now you really have no excuse to forgo SPF in your skin-care routine.

Our Top Picks:

  1. Best Overall: EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46, $41
  2. Best Tinted Sunscreen: MDSolarSciences Mineral Tinted Crème SPF 30, $33
  3. Glowy Not Greasy: Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Sunscreen SPF 50, $35
  4. Easy-Peasy Touch-Ups: Brush on Block Translucent Mineral Powder Sunscreen SPF 30, $34
  5. Dermatologist-Approved: Supergoop Mineral Mattescreen Sunscreen SPF 40, $38

All products featured on Allure are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

  • EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46

    Board-certified dermatologist Jeannette Graf, MD, an Assistant Clinical Professor of Dermatology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, suggests EltaMD’s barely-there UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46 — touting its ability to reduce shine and clear pores by way of lactic acid. Think of this as more of a mattifying moisturizer than a sunscreen. Even though it’s boosted with sodium hyaluronate (a form of hyaluronic acid) to moisturize the skin, it’ll never feel oily or sticky.

  • Ilia C Beyond Triple Serum SPF 40

    The beauty of Ilia’s C Beyond Triple Serum SPF 40 is that it’s both a tinted sunscreen and a complexion-evening serum. As this lightly pigmented formula provides sheer coverage and broad-spectrum protection against UV rays, this facial sunscreen also treats skin with radiance-boosting vitamin C and niacinamide, an antioxidant known for its oil-balancing properties.

  • MDSolarSciences Mineral Tinted Crème SPF 30

    When Allure commerce writer Jennifer Hussein needs complexion coverage while she’s basking in the sun, she swaps out her usual matte-finish foundation for the MDSolarSciences Mineral Tinted Crème SPF 30. “I love the light, sheer-to-medium coverage of this tinted sunscreen,” she says. “Believe it or not, but I actually prefer this sunscreen over most foundations for its breathability and skin-enhancing ingredients.” Complexion-boosting additives you can spot in this formula include antioxidant-rich green tea extract and brightening vitamin C.

  • Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Sunscreen SPF 50

    Dewy skin that doesn’t feel greasy sounds nearly impossible for oily skin types, but it’s totally achievable with Glow Recipe’s Watermelon Glow Sunscreen SPF 50. This weightless sunscreen lotion is formulated with hydrating hyaluronic acid, soothing aloe vera, and brightening niacinamide for a reflective complexion without greasy buildup.

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