The sun generates harsh heat that will damage the skin in more ways than one. With this, sun protection should be a priority, which becomes especially important when you have a tattoo. Being inked requires the need to have a special skin care routine to prevent it from fading. Among others, one that you will need is the best sunscreen for tattoo.
There are many elements that could cause the tattoo to easily fade out, including water and shampoo. Nonetheless, the most serious enemy is probably the heat of the sun. This can cause the ink to blur and green spots might appear. The best line of defense is to use an effective sunscreen, which includes those that will be mentioned in the rest of this post.
Our Top Picks for the Best Sunscreen for Tattoos
If you are now itching to find out which sunscreen is best for your tattoo, this section will give you a quick glimpse of our top recommendations.
Coppertone SPF 50 Tattoo Guard Stick
This tattoo stick has SPF 50 and is great for protection from the UVA and UVB rays of the sun. Because it exists in the form of a stick, you can be sure of its precise application exactly on the spot where the tattoo is. It is made using ingredients that do not only provide a protective barrier against the heat of the sun but also nourish the skin. This can be attributed to the antioxidants, Vitamin C, and Vitamin E that you can find in this sunscreen. It is recommended by dermatologists and it is also hypoallergenic, which is why it is why there is no need to worry about skin irritation.
CannaSmack Ink Guard
This SPF 30 sunscreen also functions as a fade shield. It comes in the form of a stick, which makes it easy to apply directly on the spot where you are inked. The effectiveness of this tattoo sunscreen can be attributed to the use of the best ingredients available, which include hemp seed oil. The latter is a potent source of Omega 6, Omega 3, and Vitamins A, B, D, and E. It is light and silky. You will never feel sticky when it is used, even during a hot day. More than protecting the tattoo from the harsh heat of the sun, it also makes the skin more moisturized.
Australian Gold SPF 50 Tattoo Stick
While you can generally use any top-rated sunscreen to protect your tattoo, as long as it has the right level of protection, this is another product that is specially formulated to prevent the ink from fading. It is in a form of a stick, which is wider compared to the product mentioned above. This allows a wider area coverage in just a single pass. It looks like a deo stick. It offers ultimate fade protection, providing a guarantee that your tattoo will not discolor even if you are exposed to the sun most of the time. It is good for both indoor and outdoor tanning.
H2Ocean SPF 45 Sea Life Sunscreen
With the oil-free formula of this tattoo sunscreen, you can be confident that it won’t feel greasy throughout the day. You will feel comfortable! It is also a good thing that it can resist water and sweat, allowing it to stay longer on the surface of the skin to protect your tattoo. If you surf or if you are into water adventures, this sunscreen promises to prevent the discoloration and fading of your tattoos. It is also eco-friendly, so there is no need to worry about the presence of harsh chemicals that can damage the reefs.
Tattoo Goo Renew Enhancing Lotion with SPF 30
While it is marketed as a lotion, because it has SPF 30, it also qualifies as a sunscreen. It has SPF 30, which is more than enough to ensure protection from the UVA and UVB rays of the sun. It is also for those who are looking for cruelty-free products as it has never been tested in animals. The main ingredient of this tattoo sunscreen is natural olive oil, which is known for being great in moisturizing the skin. It also rejuvenates old tattoo so that the colors will be more noticeable while preventing it from fading as well.
INK-EEZE Ink Shield UVA/UVB Blocking SPF 30 Tattoo Sunscreen
The use of cucumber and coconut is one of the best things about this sunscreen tattoo. These are natural ingredients that are known for their ability to moisturize the skin. They also have a natural scent that won’t end up irritating the nose. Many of the users of this tattoo sunscreen were also happy with the fact that it has a vegan-friendly formula, minimizing the environmental impacts. It provides a protective barrier to keep the rays of the sun out of the skin while also moisturizing. The sunscreen has the exclusive Ink Barrier technology for the highest level of tattoo protection.
Ed Hardy SPF 50+ Sunscreen Stick
With SPF 50+, this is one of the products that can offer the highest level of protection from the UVA and UVB rays of the sun. It is wider compared to a traditional tattoo sunscreen stick, which means that there will be a larger coverage within a single pass. It has incredible water-resistance and you will also love how it is never greasy. Even when you are already sweating, this will not feel sticky during a hot day. Plus, it contains shea butter, which is basically the one that is responsible for its moisturizing benefits.
MD Solar Sciences Mineral Tinted Crème SPF 30 Sunscreen
This sunscreen may not be specifically formulated for tattoos, but this will work effectively just like the products that have been mentioned above. According to skincare experts, you can use any sunscreen as long as it contains non-toxic ingredients, has the right SPF, and protects from both UVA and UVB rays. This product has all of these things. It is also water-resistant for up to 80 minutes, preventing the frequent need for reapplication. It is oil-free and fragrance-free. It uses an eco-certified zinc oxide, providing you with the confidence that it won’t be toxic.
La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt-in Sunscreen Milk
This is also a sunscreen that is formulated even for people who do not have a tattoo. If you have a tattoo, however, you will love the fact that it contains antioxidants, which will be great for nourishing the skin and in protecting the tattoo from fading. It has UVA and UVB protection and also comes with a water-resistant, velvety finish. It is in the form of a lotion or cream, but it will never be greasy, even when you sweat.
Blue Lizard Australian Sunscreen SPF 30+
When it comes to sunscreen, Blue Lizard is perhaps one of the most popular brands, which is why this is one option that you should never miss. It does not contain parabens and fragrances, among others that can irritate the tattoo or your skin in general. It is also mineral-based, so you do not have to worry about the possibility that it can cause irritation. The sunscreen is also water-resistant for up to 40 minutes and has been dermatologist-tested. It contains zinc oxide and titanium oxide, which are physical blockers that protect the tattoo and the skin from the UVA/UVB rays.
How the Sun Affects your Tattoo
It is a given fact that the heat of the sun is not only painful, but it can also have significant health repercussions. The most serious impact is skin cancer. If you have a tattoo, you have another reason to be more mindful of sun exposure. Especially when the tattoo is new, it can be easily prone to damage if it is often exposed to the sun.
After getting a tattoo, your skin will be wounded. You are more vulnerable to damage and discomfort at this point. Even after some time, your tattoo can still be prone to damage as it is exposed to the UV rays. The rays will be absorbed and the pigments can end up breaking, which will cause the tattoo to fade and discolor. The colors will also change. In worse situations, the tattoo will crack.
Because the heat of the sun can be harsh, the tattoo can also suffer from delayed healing. It can also suffer from sunburn and blistering. With this, if the tattoo is new, do not expose it to the sun for a while, even if you are using a sunscreen. Give it some time to heal on its own before you head out in the open.
Choosing the Best Tattoos Sunscreen
You will likely be confronted with a long list of options when it comes to sunscreen that could protect the tattoo. To weigh the possibilities, below are some of the most important things that you have to take into consideration:
- Form: When it comes to form, there are generally two choices that are available – lotion or spray. Many skincare experts and tattoo artists would agree that lotion is the best form. They are more effective because they are rubbed and directly form a protective barrier. The same thing can be said when it comes to those in the form of sunscreen sticks.
- Broad-Spectrum Protection: If the sunscreen has broad-spectrum protection, this means that it will provide protection from both the UVA and UVB rays, which can be both harmful on the tattoo and the skin.
- SPF: You also have to consider the SPF that the sunscreen can provide. At a minimum, choose one with SPF 30. The maximum would be SPF 50. Anything that is higher than 50 will just be able to provide the same level of protection, so it does not really matter.
- Ingredients: As a responsible buyer, you have to take a look at the ingredients that are used and make sure that they are non-toxic. Stay away from those that contain toxic chemicals. The sunscreen should not contain parabens, phthalates, and artificial fragrances, among others. It will be good if it has antioxidants, aloe vera, and vitamins, among other nourishing ingredients.
- Water-Resistance: Choose a sunscreen that is water-resistant for about 30 to 80 minutes. This is important especially if you are swimming, which means that there will be no need for frequent reapplication.
Other Skincare Tips for People with Tattoo
While it will help to use the right sunscreen that can protect the tattoo from discoloration, this is not enough. To keep the tattoo looking at its best, here are other tips that you should keep in mind:
- Do not use a tanning lotion. A tanning lotion is basically formulated to invite the rays of the sun to get in contact with the skin instead of providing a protective barrier. It can cause the skin to dry and cook. This is also going to increase the likelihood of having skin cancer.
- Leave the cover for a few hours or as instructed by the tattoo artist. When the tattoo is done, an antibacterial ointment will be applied and it will be covered, usually with a plastic. Do not remove this to prevent infection.
- Aside from a sunscreen, you will also benefit from using the right moisturizer on your tattoo. Look for one that is free of fragrances and dyes. Stay away from toxic ingredients that could slow down the healing and cause the colors to fade.
- Washing the tattoo with an antibacterial soap is also recommended to be done at least once a day. Similar to other skincare products, the soap should be free of toxic ingredients.
- There are also several lifestyle adjustments that you have to make. Avoid long baths and hot tubs. You should also stay away from the pool as it can contain chemicals that could cause the tattoo to fade. Even in lakes or oceans, they can contain microorganisms that are bad for the tattoo, especially when it is new.
Protect your tattoo from fading and prevent the harsh effects of the sun on the skin by using the products that have been mentioned in this post. The right sunscreen will help to keep the tattoo look at its best while also making sure that the skin is not damaged by the rays of the sun.