The deep of January may seem an odd time to deliver winter sunscreen tips. However, you need to apply sunscreen regardless of the time of year. In this post I’ll share my top 5 winter sunscreen tips to help you keep your skin protected from the sun’s damaging ultraviolet (UV) rays.
Two types of the sun’s UV rays can damage skin:
- UVA Rays. These deep penetrating rays are prevalent year round. They pass through glass and clouds and are associated with Aging and some types of skin cancers.
- UVB Rays. These shorter penetrating rays are the ones mainly associated with Burning. Like UVA rays, they may contribute to some types of skin cancer as well.
While I’m all for sitting inside drinking warm cups of tea and reading books or bingeing on Netflix through the cooler months, being a shut-in probably isn’t wise. Someone has to buy groceries after all. And, fresh air is good for the soul! If I’m working, I’m usually close to the window so my skin is receiving daily UV exposure, even in the dead of winter.
Without further ado, my 5 top winter sunscreen tips:
- Aim for a Minimum of SPF 30. An SPF 30 sunscreen blocks about 97% of UVB rays when applied correctly. Most health professionals will recommending SPF 30 as the minimum when it comes to sunscreen.
- Go for Broad Spectrum. Though most sunscreens should offer you protection against both UVA and UVB rays, some don’t. Look for those labelled as ‘broad spectrum’, which means that they will protect against both types of rays.
- Apply Enough. Studies have shown that most of us never apply enough sunscreen, meaning that we aren’t getting the protection indicated on the label. How much is enough? For the most part, you’ll need about ¼ teaspoon for your face (not including your neck, ears or head). I like to apply once, wait a bit and then apply again. This helps to make sure I cover any missed areas the second time around. If your decollete will be exposed, don’t forget that area. And try to get the tops of your hands too.
- Apply First Thing in the Morning. Doing this achieves two things. First, it helps to get you into the habit of wearing sunscreen every day, year round. Second, it ensures that you are protected even it you stay indoors. Remember that you don’t have to go outside for exposure to UV rays as UVA rays can penetrate through windows.
- Find a Sunscreen You Like. Experiment a bit. Find a sunscreen whose texture, fragrance and skin feel you like. If you’re happy with your sunscreen, you’ll be more likely to use it.
Lastly, if you want to up the ante on protecting your skin against UV damage, consider adding in an antioxidant. Antioxidants protect skin differently than sunscreen can, by helping to minimize skin damage caused by exposure to free radicals. Free radicals are unstable molecules, which are generated by UV rays, pollution and other external factors. We like our Bespoke Vitamin C Serum, which boasts L-ascorbic acid, green tea extract and an arsenal of antioxidants to deliver the ultimate in skin protection.
What’s your take? Any further winter sunscreen tips to offer?