Winter is drawing near, the air is getting colder, and sometimes the weather doesn’t even allow the sun to peek out from behind the clouds for more than a couple minutes. At least you don’t have to worry about sun protection in winter, right? Wrong! The winter sun can be as damaging as the sun in summer, sometimes even more dangerous.
Weather cannot stop the UV rays
Despite shorter days and generally less sunlight during the winter, you can’t get away from dangerous UV rays. UVB rays do indeed vary with the seasons and are much more prevalent in summer. They can cause the painful sunburns you get without the correct sun protection, and increase the risk of skin cancer, too. However, UVA rays are always there – up to 80 % can even penetrate clouds. While UVB rays damage the outer layer of your skin, UVA go deeper – they can increase the risk of developing skin cancer as well, and they are also a key factor in premature ageing of the skin.
Snow sports require sun protection for sure. One of the highlights of sunny winter days is to go outside for skiing, snowboarding, sleighing; you name it! There are three additional dangers when it comes to snow sports. First, snow reflects the sun rays, making them much stronger. Imagine: you’re not only exposed from above, but fresh snow can reflect up to 90 % of the sun rays! Second, a higher altitude also means stronger sunlight. If you get 300 meters higher up a mountain, you’re already exposed to 5 % more UV rays than before! The third danger is the false sense of safety – the cold temperatures makes it easy to forget the effects of the sun’s burning rays.
Pay attention to the correct sun protection
Unless you want to hide inside your house all winter, the key to staying safe and keeping your skin beautiful is the right sun protection. It’s important to know the difference between sun protection in winter and summer. Did you know the protection components of your sunscreen are worn away much faster in winter, because of snow and wind? Apply sunscreen on all your exposed body parts in the morning before you go outside, bring your sunscreen along and reapply every second hour.
Being aware of the dangers is the first step to avoiding skin cancer and premature ageing. Choose a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30 and remember to reapply. Wear sunglasses and use a lip balm with UV protection. An additional way to stay safe is avoiding the strongest sunlight between 10 AM and 4 PM. To make sun protection much easier during sunny winter days, use IONIQ’s sprayer! This device makes use of a magnetic technology that applies a perfect layer of sunscreen all over your body – without giving you messy hands! Follow us on Facebook for more skincare tips!