Sunscreen Stick Broad Spectrum SPF 50
0.47 fl. oz. for $9.99
Last Updated:12.19.2014
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:No
Review Overview

This fragrance-free, water-resistant sunscreen stick contains the gentle mineral actives titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, so broad-spectrum sun protection is assured. Although it's a wax-like stick, it has a refreshingly smooth, even application that blends into skin without leaving a thick, chalky-looking white cast. Some whiteness is apparent, but it's subtle compared to other similar sunscreen sticks we've seen—and this doesn't feel as heavy on the skin as others either.

Still, stick sunscreens like this are best for applying to the most sunburn-prone or sensitive areas, such as around the eyes, the bridge of the nose, tops of the ears and feet, and the hands. Applying this over a large area doesn't feel great, and is a bad idea if you have breakout-prone skin.

This deserves our top rating for its sun protection and aesthetics, and because the formula contains a good mix of skin-repairing ingredients. For best results, apply this over an antioxidant-rich serum or moisturizer.

  • Fragrance-free, water-resistant formula.
  • Easy to apply and provides broad-spectrum sun protection.
  • Great for sunburn-prone areas and sensitive skin.
  • Contains a good mix of skin-repairing ingredients.
  • Does not leave an obvious white cast.
  • Doesn't feel great applied over large areas, so you'll need a separate sunscreen for the large areas.

Developed with dermatologists. Broad spectrum SPF 50. CeraVe SPF 50 Sunscreen Stick is like no other sunscreen you’ve ever experienced. It delivers powerful protection from the sun’s dangerous rays. This new lightweight formula spreads easily and dries with a clear finish. Ceramides help repair and restore the protective skin barrier. Hyaluronic acid attracts moisture to the top layer of the skin.


Active Ingredients: Titanium Dioxide (6.0%), Zinc Oxide (4.7%); Inactive Ingredients: C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Butyloctyl Salicylate, Neopentyl Glycol Diethylhexanoate, Paraffin, Euphorbia Cerifera (Candelilla) Wax, Ozokerite, Dimethicone, Beeswax, Polyethylene, Cetyl Alcohol, Ceramide 3, Ceramide 6-II, Ceramide 1, Cholesterol, Phytosphingosine, Sodium Hyaluronate, Polyhydrostearic Acid, Aluminum Hydroxide, Stearic Acid, BHT, Carbomer, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Isostearic Acid, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Xanthan Gum.

Brand Overview

CeraVe At-A-Glance

Strengths: Affordable, gentle, and fragrance-free; some excellent moisturizers and facial cleansers; a well-formulated eye cream; products provide broad-spectrum sun protection; remarkably gentle baby care; good (but small) assortment of anti-aging products.

Weaknesses: SPF products would do better with the inclusion of antioxidants and more elegant textures; the Renewing SA products aren't as adept at treating keratosis pilaris as they could be.

This small-ish (but expanding( collection of skin-care products keeps things gentle and effective with fragrance-free formulas, many of which are more state-of-the-art than any other product in its price range or pricier versions at the drugstore. In short, this line is a real find!

CeraVe uses a delivery system the company refers to as Multivesicular Emulsion Technology, which releases key ingredients such as ceramides and hyaluronic acid over a period of several hours. Although this technology is undoubtedly helpful, such time-delayed delivery systems aren't unique to CeraVe, and the fact remains that most of the ingredients they use are very helpful on their own, no matter what delivery system you use.

The important point is that ongoing, consistent use of this kind of moisturizer designed to repair the skin's barrier function will result in smoother, softer, healthier skin. An interesting element for this product is the inclusion of phytosphingosine. It is an ingredient that research shows is effective in regulating damaged or diseased epithelial cells. It seems this ingredient can be a cell-communicating ingredient, albeit one that is best for compromised skin. However, given CeraVe is positioned for those struggling with psoriasis, eczema, or rosacea, that's a great addition. (Source: Journal of Investigative Dermatology, October 2003, pages 1135–1137).

It is for these reasons that all the CeraVe products are definitely worth considering, especially at this price. You'll find a options for moisturizing, cleansing, baby care,broad spectrum sun protection (though many of the SPF products don't feel or look so great on skin), and baby care.

For more information about CeraVe, call 866-819-9007 or visit www.cerave.com.

About the Experts

The new Beautypedia Team proudly and unequivocally maintains the commitment to help you find the best products possible for your skin. We do this by relentlessly pursuing and relying on published scientific research so you will have unbiased information on what works and what doesn't-and the sneaky ways you could be making your skin worse, not better!

The Beautypedia Team reviews all products using the same research, criteria, and objectivity, whether the product being reviewed is from Paula's Choice or another brand.

Member Comments
Summary of Member Comments
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Cerave sunscreens are the best protection for the money

After consulting with dermatologists and lifeguards, I bought several by this brand and now swear by them.

Reviewed by
kate b
Great touch-up sunscreen

For some reason it is very hard to get this product in my area. Target and Walgreens are always sold out! I love it as a touch-up throughout the day, especially on my hands and forearms. I always have it in my bag and don't have to worry about the product spilling and staining anything. Paula, please make a stick sunscreen for touch-ups and back of the hands reapplication!!

Reviewed by
White as a Ghost!

InvisbleZinc? (Actually I think it's the titanium that looks white) This stuff is glowy white (on my caramel brown skin) but it does feel nice and doesn't irritate so I'll keep it. Anyway, I only got this to touch up on the beach because I don't want to take my PC sunblock outside in the sand.

Reviewed by
Neat, convenient and purse-friendly

Not a primary sunscreen. Beyond the reasons mentioned in the B'pedia review, it's tiny so using on large areas would be very time-consuming as well as a pain in the wallet. I toss it in my bag for touch-ups when I'm going to be outdoors for awhile but not long enough to need full reapplication. Used on my (very pale) face during a long concert in the blazing sun on top of my usual Neutrogena Ultra Sheer SPF 30 and got no color. No complaints on the formula for my combination/breakout-prone skin.

Reviewed by
Christine M
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