Some of my patients ask why the better sunscreens are so expensive and are they worth it?
In general, the answer is yes – especially for the face, neck and chest. The more expensive sunscreens have higher amounts of the zinc and titanium — these are the minerals that really protect your skin and don’t degrade with light exposure. Mexoryl or Parsol/avobenzone are also good but degrade somewhat with light exposure. Most of the other ingredients in sunscreens are inexpensive and block UVB only.
You want sunscreens that block both UVA and UVB well, and that requires the more expensive, higher concentrations of at least 5% zinc and/or titanium.
If you want to save money on suncreens, use the cheaper ones for your body, especially the parts that get less sun in general. Your face, neck, chest, hands, and arms tend to get lots of sun and light, so use good suncreens on those areas.