Sunscreens are topical products that absorb or reflect some of the sun’s damaging ultraviolet radiation. Because of this, they help protect against premature aging and skin cancer.
There are two primary types of sunscreen: organic and mineral.
Organic/Chemical - Organic (carbon-based, also referred to as chemical) sunscreens absorb UV rays, transform and release them as heat. This prevents those rays from penetrating and damaging the skin. Examples of organic sunscreens include avobenzone, octisalate, and octinoxate.
Mineral - Mineral sunscreens form a physical barrier that reflects or scatters the UV radiation, preventing it from damaging the skin. Examples of mineral sunscreens include zinc oxide and titanium dioxide.
Since mineral sunscreens form a physical barrier on top of the skin, they are not ideal for men with facial hair. Since they sit on top of the skin, these types of sunscreens can leave a tinted residue in the beard. They also don't interact well with beard oils.
A properly formulated organic sunscreen quickly absorbs and is easily applied to the skin, beard, and scalp without leaving a greasy residue. They do interact well with beard oils.