Sunscreen for hikers and climbers
  • Lifestyle
  • Sun & travel

Sunscreen for hikers and climbers

Are you planning a summer hike? Whether you are looking for an SPF for a walking holiday or are an avid climber looking for a protective sun cream for use on the mountain peaks, we can help.

By Hannah Mepham

7 Minute read

In this post, we explore sunscreen for hikers and share tips for keeping your skin sun-safe while on long walks or at higher altitudes. 

Read on to find out our recommendations for our favourite sunscreens for hiking. Green People sun creams are natural and organic, gentle on sensitive skin and contain ingredients that are kind to the natural world.

Choosing a sunscreen for hikers and climbers

The best sunscreen for hikers and climbers will be high-factor, water-repellent and designed to withstand high altitudes.

You'll also want to travel light as your hiking pack will already be heavy with water and your safety essentials.

To make it easy to keep your sun protection topped up on your hike, we offer hikers and climbers a choice of high-factor sun protection products in travel-friendly sizes, including 30ml, 50ml, 100ml and 200ml.

Best sunscreens for hiking and climbing

Scent Free Sun Cream SPF30

Our best sunscreen for hikers prone to sensitive skin or prickly heat, our Scent Free SPF30 Sun Cream protects against UVA and shields skin from 97% of burning UVB using a blend of effective sun filters and Edelweiss, an alpine UV booster.

This remarkable plant has evolved to live at extreme altitudes, where it must withstand strong UV light levels. Rich in antioxidants, trials have shown it to extend cell life when exposed to free radical activity.

This makes it the ideal ingredient for giving hikers and mountain climbers an extra level of defence against UVA sun rays.

“Really happy with this suncream, it’s the first natural suncream I’ve liked! It’s a nice consistency, it doesn’t smell weird & it worked brilliantly! I wore it hiking in Ibiza & didn’t get one bit of sunburn”

Carol M

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Mineral Sports+ SPF30

Designed for an active lifestyle, our certified organic Mineral Sports+ SPF30 Sun Cream is a hiker’s essential. It is water-repellent, suitable for all skin types, and can be used on the face and body.

A 100% mineral sun cream, it provides instant protection and has the added benefit of coming in a no-spill 50ml tube that’s the perfect fit for your hiking kit.

To help keep your skin cool as you climb, we add a soothing core of over 60% Aloe Vera and the refreshing aroma of Peppermint and Eucalyptus. 

Choosing an SPF for high altitudes

Are you heading for a walk in the hills? Summer hikes are a great way to escape the city's heat, but as UV is more intense at high altitudes (with every 1000 feet of elevation, there is an increase of 6-10% in UV exposure) you should always check the UV Index before you set off, wear appropriate clothing and apply plenty of high-factor SPF30.

The best sunscreen for hikers and climbers will be high-factor, water-repellent and designed to withstand high altitudes.

As you climb, you’ll no doubt work up a sweat, which can deplete the protective power of your hiker’s SPF. So, choose a water-repellent sun cream designed to endure the heat of a hot hike or mountain climb and reapply it regularly.

Avoiding insect bites when hiking

Looking for a mosquito repellent for walking? Did you know that your sun cream could also help you avoid insect bites while hiking or climbing? Ideal for early morning hikes, our SPF15 with Natural Insect Repellent is a great choice for walkers who want to avoid insect bites.

Enriched with the clinically proven natural insect repellent Citrepel®75, it provides 2-in-1 defence from sun damage and biting insects and offers hikers a DEET-free way to protect their skin against mosquitoes, midges, ticks and more for up to 4 hours at a time.

Always remember to use after sun to cool your skin in the evening after sun exposure. Our Moisturising After Sun with Natural Insect Repellent combines soothing, rehydrating Aloe Vera and refreshing Peppermint with the insect repellent Citrepel®75.

Discover more skin care essentials for hikers

Best natural foot cream for hikers

All walkers will know the importance of good footwear, but investing in a good hiker’s foot cream is just as important.

Rich in sole-soothing Shea Butter and invigorating Peppermint, our certified organic Deodorising Prebiotic Foot Cream is perfect for perking up tired toes and uses the deodorising power of Prebiotics to neutralise sweaty foot odours. Perfect for cooling down after a hot hike. 

Best anti-chafing balm for hikers and climbers

If your helmet and mountaineering equipment chafe your skin, you’ll want to protect it with a balm packed with skin-kind ingredients that soothe skin irritation while also working to prevent further chafing.

One Balm is our best skin balm for hikers and climbers. Packed with protective plant oils, including protective Myrrh and reparative Rosehip, it makes a brilliant barrier balm and knows just how to shield your skin from dryness, irritation, and other elements.

We hope you have found this guide to hikers' sunscreen and skin care helpful. For further help choosing sunscreen for your next hike, please contact our friendly UK customer care team on 01403 740250 or @GreenPeopleUK.

Reviewed by:

This blog post has been reviewed by Charlotte Vøhtz, founder of Green People, who has 25+ years of experience in the natural and organic beauty industry. A recognised leader in the field of organic beauty, Charlotte helped inform the UK's first organic beauty standards and was voted the People’s Choice in the 2023 list of Who’s Who in Natural Beauty. A published author, she wrote the organic beauty bible ‘Naturally Gorgeous’. Previously, she qualified as a nurse and spent over 10 years working in pharmaceuticals.

If you wish to republish this content, please credit Green People as the original creator with a link to 'Sunscreen for hikers and climbers.' Please do not use an affiliate link.

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