Is the zinc content more important than the SPF in a sunscreen?

I have melasma and noticed that you recommended a couple of sunscreens with high zinc in them. Is this more important that a high spf? Thanks...Jennifer

Glad you asked to clarify this!   The short answer is yes!  As long as the sunscreen has at least an SPF 30 and is appropriate for the situation – i.e. water resistent  when you’re in the water, than the zinc content is more important because it will block UVA better.  Look for sunscreens with 5-20% zinc.  Dermaquest has the best high zinc (18%) that I’ve seen in that it’s not chalky.  There are lots of other good ones though. They are expensive so use them mostly on high risk areas like the face, neck and chest.  I usually use a less expensive sunscreen on my body or cover up.  Dr. I

Dr. Brandith Irwin, MD

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