A moisturizer with SPF is an essential part of your grooming routine, whether you prefer to stick to the basics or you’ve got a full 15-step regimen of cleansers and serums in your medicine cabinet.
The best moisturizers with SPF do double duty, locking the moisture in your skin and shielding your face from the kinds of pollutants that accelerate signs of aging. They also defend your skin against harmful UV rays, which is absolutely essential in not only preventing sunburns, but also in keeping your complexion looking youthful for as long as possible. (Exposure to UV rays can cause your skin to lose its firmness and its ability to retain moisture, to say nothing of dark spots, wrinkles, fine lines, dryness, roughness and more.
But it’s not just the sun you should be concerned about. Recent research has shown that exposure to blue light—the kind emitted by our phones and computer screens—can have a similar effect as UV light, which tells us that you should be wearing a moisturizer with an SPF whether you’re logging hours at the office or working from home.
And it goes without saying that while you should be wearing sunscreen on all of your exposed body parts whenever you’re spending time outdoors or on the beach, we’re focusing here on the kind you should be putting on your face every day.
Where your face is concerned, you have two main options: A standalone SPF worn over or under your moisturizer, OR a moisturizer that itself contains SPF. For those who choose the latter—the beloved moisturizer with SPF—you combine two essential steps into one, and get the daily protection you need in fighting toxins and UV rays, and preserving a firm, even complexion. You can take it a step further and “prescribe” the best type of product for your skin needs and personal preferences, too: An ultra-hydrating option for dry skin, an oil-free version for oily or acne-prone skin, a high-SPF number for fair skin, and even one made from minerals if you’re skeptical of chemical-based sun protection.
Below you’ll find the best moisturizers with SPF for all of these needs and more. They’re all terrific for daily wear, but we’ll try to guide you to the one that’ll suit your specific skin needs best.
Best Overall: Supergoop Sunscreen Daily Moisturizer SPF 40
Lightweight, highly nourishing and long-lasting. I can log few complaints about this product (the slightly chalky aroma is all I can come up with right now)—but this is the go-to moisturizer I wear year round. On the sunniest summer days it offers a relatively high SPF 40 for sun protection that doesn’t feel greasy, and in the winter it adds a much-needed layer of hydration.
Best Mineral SPF: Thrive Daily Defense Sunscreen Balm SPF 30
Many people refuse to use chemical sunscreen ingredients because mineral ingredients seem to be better for both humans and coral reefs alike. These sunscreens sit atop the skin and deflect UV rays, unlike the chemical ones which soak into the skin and absorb or neutralize the rays. If you do prefer mineral options, choose an SPF moisturizer like Thrive’s which uses non-nano zinc oxide (whose particles are too large to be absorbed by marine life) and whose roster of ingredients is proven to nourish the skin—in this case, there are juanilama and fierrillo, two super plants rich in skin-defending antioxidants.
Buy Now (Grove Collaborative): $24.95
Best Luxury Buy: Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine Cream SPF 30
Elemis’s entire assortment is enriched with various algae extracts, which deeply hydrate the skin and keep it looking firm and even-toned. While this SPF 30 day cream has a lower level of sunscreen ingredients than others, it is a perfect late-afternoon or cloudy-day option, just to ensure you have protection from the waning rays.
Best Value: Cetaphil SPF 50 Daily Facial Moisturizer
Cetaphil is one of those drugstore brands that every dermatologist seems to love. This SPF 50 moisturizer epitomizes why: It works well for people who want serious sun protection (though people with dry skin tend to get the best results), it wears light, and its moisturizer can nourish your skin all day—just remember to reapply every two hours if you’re staying out in the sun. As a bonus, its non-comedogenic formula promises not to clog pores.
Buy Now (Amazon): $31.90 for 2
Best for Acne-Prone Skin: Apostrophe ‘Screen SPF 43 Sunscreen
Apostrophe is the brand for acne-prone skin. And while it positions this product primarily as a sunscreen, it is packed with hydrating hyaluronic acid and panthenol, as well as soothing allantoin. These ingredients alone elevate it to facial moisturizer status—but the sunscreen itself is also higher and more densely concentrated than most SPF hydrators (17.5 percent, with a mix of mineral and chemical sunscreens), hence their chosen nomenclature.
Best for Oily Skin: Mario Badescu Oil-Free Moisturizer SPF 30
If you’ve got oily skin, then you want an oil-free moisturizer—otherwise, it’s going to feel suffocating on your face. Mario Badescu’s not only lacks oil, but it also contains antioxidant-rich green tea (to help bounce toxins) as well as soothing aloe vera. It absorbs quickly and wears light—and won’t clog pores, either, making it ideal for acne-prone types.
Best Tinted: Dr. Dennis Gross Instant Radiance Sun Defense SPF 40
Tinted moisturizers aren’t for everyone; first of all, you need to make sure you get one that blends easily with your skin tone. But once you’ve got the right color, a tinted moisturizer can help “even out” an otherwise inconsistent skin tone, bringing everything to a more neutral, balanced center. This mineral one from Dr. Dennis Gross blends cleanly, doesn’t run and leaves skin with a radiant glow—and a thorough defense against UV rays.
Buy Now (Dr. Dennis Gross): $42
Best for Your Body: Supergoop Body Butter SPF 40
Many brands make face-dedicated moisturizers, but few also produce one designed to go on your body. Leave it to Supergoop, the brand that innovates sun defense, to deliver this SPF 40-packed body lotion. This product shields the entire body from UV rays, while also pumping antioxidants into the skin for an all-over defense against environmental aggressors.
Best for Reapplying: Ursa Major Force Field SPF 18
Another mineral-based pick, this is one of the few sub-30 SPFs we feel comfortable recommending. This one is a great option to keep in your desk or in whatever bag you’re carrying. If you got a morning dose of SPF, this product offers a nutrient-dense shot of hydration and UV protection to get you across the finish line. We also love deploying it days when we work from home or stay primarily indoors, or otherwise don’t need a full blast of UV protection. It’s a top-tier hydrator, too, thanks to a blend of squalane, hyaluronic acid, plus fruit and floral stem cells, all of which counter skin-aging aggressors. It’ll help your skin stay supple, smooth and resilient.
Best for Screen Exposure: Clinique For Men SPF 21
SPF 30 is the general dermatologist cutoff for recommended defense, but it is only incrementally better than SPF 15; it’s not twice as strong, as the easy math would suggest. So even though Clinique’s beloved moisturizer only has 21 SPF, it’s still worthy of inclusion on this list because of its silky smooth texture and fast absorption. It wears light and applies easily, making it easy for mid-day office top-ups or a late-night fix before you dive into your favorite video game or Instascrolling. If SPF 30 is the standard for sunny days, fine, but let this SPF 21 be your indoor shield against skin aging.
Best for Fair Skin: La Roche-Posay Anthelios SPF 60
Some brands are a little nebulous on whether a product is strictly a moisturizer with SPF or a sunscreen. Typically, antioxidant benefits suggest it’s a moisturizer, while resistance to sweat and water imply it’s a sunscreen. This La Roche-Posay lotion has both. And honestly, the nomenclature doesn’t always matter. If you have extremely fair skin and what you need is SPF 50+ protection, then just make sure your facial regimen product has some kind of nourishment in addition to toxin and UV defense. This one is oil-free, too, so it’s non-comedogenic on oily and acne-prone skin.