If you have ever asked yourself 'does tinted sunscreen stain clothes?' and wondered whether it's a good idea to use it or not, we have some good news. Tinted sunscreen, when applied correctly, is far less likely to stain your clothes, but it can be problematic. Here's some pointers on using your tinted sunscreen and decreasing the likelihood of it staining your clothes.

Why choose a tinted sunscreen?

When you're choosing a mineral sunscreen over a chemical sunscreen, the trade off is that zinc oxide is used to create a reflective barrier on the skin to reflect harmful UV-A and UV-B rays away from your skin. Zinc oxide is a white powder, and, depending on the brand and how you apply it, it can leave a pale white cast on your skin. Because consumers and manufacturers know this, most sunscreen companies who use zinc oxide as the active ingredient also make a tinted version. Most people don't mind the slight white cast for a day at the beach, but when you're in office attire or workwear and still need SPF protection, a tinted sunscreen is the best option for most.

Sunbutter Tinted Sunscreen

What is used to tint mineral sunscreen?

Most brands use mineral powder, much like a natural makeup brand will create a foundation or a BB cream. These powders are usually some kind of clay, and as a result, the have the capacity to stain fabrics.

Can I make my own tinted mineral sunscreen?

Absolutely. Firstly, you need to start off with a TGA approved mineral sunscreen as your base. There's no playing with SPF factors here. All we're doing is tinting an existing approved SPF30 or SPF50 sunscreen. There are two ways to go about this.

OPTION 1 is to apply your sunscreen and then apply a mineral powder foundation or bronzer over the top.
OPTION 2 is to mix them before application. It's advisable only to mix enough for a single application. Place the amount of sunscreen you need in your hand or a small bowl, add powder foundation, mix and check the colour. Apply to your skin as normal.

Mother SPF Mother Of Pearl Tint

Using MotherSPF Mother Of Pearl instead

One of the premium sunscreen brands in store is MotherSPF. Last season they created a pearlescent glow cream called The Mother Of Pearl specifically to wear over sunscreen that gives you a white cast. It doubles as a spectacular body bronzer and highlighter and gives a much more appealing finish if you're going out for an afternoon cruise or a garden party.

Tip 1 to avoid tinted sunscreen staining your clothes

This is a tip straight from makeup land. Prep your skin. Think makeup primer but on your body. Ensure your skin is exfoliated on a regular basis (either with an exfoliant or a dry body brush) and keep your skin hydrated with a moisturiser or body oil. For the purpose of this, if you're going to apply on the day of your sunscreen, stick to a moisturiser. You don't want your skin to be oily when applying tinted sunscreen.

Tip 2 to avoid tinted sunscreen staining your clothes

Be patient. Sunscreen should be applied 20 minutes before going out in to sunlight. When applying tinted sunscreen, give it some time to dry before you put clothes on. This serves a dual purpose. Firstly, it's going to reduce it staining your clothes, and secondly, it's not going to rub off and give you a safer, more even coverage for when you do go out in the sun.

Tip 3 to avoid tinted sunscreen staining your clothes

Again, we're taking a tip from makeup land. Set it. Use either a setting powder (we love the Ere Perez Corn Setting Powder) or a mineral makeup powder - loose or pressed it fine. It can be the shade you use on your face or a bronzer. Whatever you already have or what you can get on sale is fine.

How do I remove tinted sunscreen stains from clothing?

Treat this like a blood stain to make it as easy as possible. Apply a soaker or stain remover spray and soak in cold water, not warm or hot water. We love the sodium percarbonate based soakers from Abode for this job. After a few hours, hand wash out any remaining stain, resoak if necessary and then wash as normal.