Can you remember the last time your skin was looked at by a skin care…
“Should I Wear Sunscreen During the Winter?” Brentwood Dermatologists Discuss
One of the biggest misconceptions about skin cancer is that you can only increase your risk for this common skin condition during the sunny summer months. However, your winter skin cancer risk may be just as high during the winter as it is in the summer.
It’s important to understand why you should wear sunscreen during the winter, in addition to taking extra skin care steps to optimally protect this vital organ from the chilly winter weather.
Why You Should Wear Sunscreen in the Winter
Though the temperatures have dropped and there are less hours of sunlight, don’t think you can pack up your sunscreen and store it away on a bottom shelf in the bathroom! Here’s why you should hold onto your sunscreen and apply regularly during the winter months.
Year-Round UV Rays
During the summer, many are constantly aware of how strong the summer sun feels on their skin. However, the sun’s UV rays can burn and damage your skin all year round — not just during summer!
Even when it’s winter and the sun is hidden by overcast, not to mention there are less daylight hours, the winter sun can reach your skin, increasing your risk of skin cancer. Furthermore, research has shown that UV rays easily penetrate clouds or fog, and may even enhance the effects of UV radiation.
Reflective Winter Sunlight
Did you know that snow reflects up to 80 percent of the sun’s UV light? This means that not only do you get exposed to sunlight once as it beams down from the sky, you get hit a second time when the rays reflect back to your skin from the snow.
This exposure significantly increases your risk for both skin cancer and premature aging, compromising your complexion in the future.
Winter Activities and High Altitudes
Are you someone who thoroughly enjoys the winter season by hitting the slopes and going skiing or snowboarding, breathing in the fresh air with snowshoeing, or hiking in the snow-capped mountains? Then wearing sunscreen is absolutely crucial for reducing your winter skin cancer risk.
Research shows that individuals who spend ample time outdoors skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, or hiking in higher altitudes are at an even greater risk because these sports take place at a higher altitude, where the thinner atmosphere absorbs less UV radiation.
How to Protect Your Skin During the Winter
As you can see, there are several reasons why you should continue to wear sunscreen during the winter months. In addition to slathering on the SPF, here are some of our additional winter skin care tips:
- Apply lip balm with SPF. Not only is your skin susceptible to damage, your lips are, too! Furthermore, lip balm is important for keeping them hydrated in the dry winter weather.
- Wear protective clothing. When outdoors, cover your skin with ample clothing and outdoor gear, such as long-sleeved shirts, gloves, and a hat. This is especially important if doing outdoor activities, like skiing or snowboarding, or working outside.
- Wear sunglasses. With the reflective snow, your eyes are particularly at risk. Make sure to wear sunglasses regularly to keep your eyes protected.
- Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. With the dryer winter air comes dry skin. A good winter skincare routine involves regularly hydrating and moisturizing the skin with a high-quality lotion, cream, or serum.
Healthy Winter Skin in Brentwood, Tennessee
Do you need professional skin care tips? Consult with the experienced board-certified dermatologists at Brentwood Dermatology!
We’re here to help you achieve your healthiest winter skin with personalized skincare regimens, dermatologist-recommended skin care products, and elevated cosmetic treatments. Get in touch with our clinic to schedule a skin care consultation today!
Expert Skin Care at Brentwood Dermatology
The trusted physicians at Brentwood Dermatology can assist you with all of your general, surgical, and cosmetic dermatology needs. If you would like to learn more about our services, such as our chemical peels in Brentwood, TN, contact us online or give us a call at (615) 377-3448.