UV radiation exposure is the major contributor to photocarcinogenesis and photoageing. Reducing UV radiation exposure can be achieved by using adequate sunscreen preparations. The use of sunscreen can significantly reduce the incidence of squamous cell carcinoma, actinic keratoses and invasive melanoma. In the Australian market over 900 sunscreen products are available, each with their own brand, formulation and ingredients. It can be difficult for dermatologists and consumers to determine which are the most effective and appropriate products to use. We discuss the specific active ingredients found in sunscreen formulations available in Australia, their mode of protection, photostability, solubility, and side-effects and the methods used by the Therapeutic Goods Administration to determine the ratings and efficacy of each sunscreen.