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4 Reasons Sunscreen Is Just As Important In The Winter

4 Reasons Sunscreen Is Just As Important In The Winter

Yes, you still need to wear sunscreen in the winter. Even in winter, when the days are short and the sun often hides behind the clouds, UV rays are still beaming down ready to hit your skin. Most people want to ease up on wearing sunscreen in the winter because they think that just because the sun does not feel hot on their skin, they are not at risk for burning or any other side effects from sun exposure. No matter how thick those clouds are above or how cold it is outside, up to 80% of UVB and UVA rays can cause a risk for cancer and aging skin. It is imperative you apply sunscreen every single day year-round to ensure your skin remains wrinkle-free and reduce the risk of developing skin cancer.

4 Reasons To Wear Sunscreen In The Winter

1. You Can’t Escape UV Rays
There are two types of UV rays that exist: UVA and UVB rays. Ultraviolet A rays are also referred to as “long waves” and make up 95% of the UV rays that reach the surface of the earth. These rays can penetrate clouds, glass, and penetrate the skin on a much deeper level. These rays are also responsible for signs of aging such as dark spots and wrinkles. Ultraviolet B rays are what cause redness and sunburns but they do not penetrate the skin as deeply as UVA rays. These rays are strongest in the early spring to early fall months, however, even though they dwindle off in the winter, they can still reach the earth's surface and are easily reflected off of snow and ice. If you go skiing on a bright, sunny day you may notice that you have a goggle tan or slightly burnt nose and lips which is caused by the UVB rays. UVA and UVB rays are here year-round, so it is still essential that you wear sunscreen every day regardless of what the weather is like outside. 

2. Many Sunscreen Products Have Useful Skin Care Properties
We aren’t talking about the greasy, smelly sunscreen that your mom used to slather on you when you were a kid on a family vacation. Sunscreen formulas have come a long way since then and now provide useful benefits for your skin other than simply protecting it from the sun.  Harsh winter weather can be extremely drying and taxing on your skin. Sunscreen products such as EltaMD help calm and protect sensitive skin types prone to dryness and rosacea. Other sunscreen products are formulated with Vitamin C to provide anti-aging benefits to your skin as well as promote the appearance of healthy-looking skin. You can even buy tinted moisturizer or BB cream products that include SPF so you can get the benefit of two products in one and eliminate an extra step in your skincare routine. 

3. Winter Conditions Can Remove Sunscreen Faster
In the summertime when you are at the beach or lake, you can feel your sunscreen melt away from sweating or from swimming. In the winter, just because you are not sweating off your sunscreen does not mean that winter's harsh conditions do not erode your sunscreen even faster. Snow and strong winds can wear away sunscreen and its effectiveness. Therefore, applying one layer of sunscreen in the morning is not always going to be enough. It is still recommended that you re-apply your sunscreen every two hours when you are outdoors and immediately after sweating. 

4. Winter Sports Put You At Higher Risk Of UV Exposure
UV radiation increases by 5% with every thousand feet your rise above sea level according to the Skin Cancer Foundation. So all of you avid skiers, snowboarders, sledders, and ski touring fanatics must take extra care of your skin by applying sunscreen while you are in the mountains. The higher elevation you are, the more prone you are to UV rays. Although you are generally covered in ski gear, helmets, and balaclavas to cover most of your face, UV rays can still find their way onto your skin and cause sunburns and put you more at risk for developing skin cancer. Next time you are up high in the mountains or are enjoying a family ski day, make sure your pre-ski checklist includes the application of sunscreen. Also, don’t forget to bring some extra sunscreen to the slopes to re-apply throughout the day. 

Top Quality Sunscreen Products At Okanagan Skin Care Centre

Purchasing a high-quality sunscreen product you can trust is the first step towards protecting your skin from the sun year-round. Many people worry that sunscreen will clog their pores and cause breakouts and therefore avoid wearing it altogether. Advanced sunscreen formulas such as EltaMD work towards improving your skin whether your concern may be acne or dry skin while offering the benefit of SPF. EltaMD works to hydrate and reduce the signs of aging like many facial moisturizer products instead of causing more skincare problems such as breakouts. To learn more about EltaMD products and how they can help restore your skin, visit the Okanagan Skin Care Centre in Kelowna or browse the products here.

To learn more about Okanagan Skin Care Centres products and skin care treatments such as chemical peels, thermage treatments, IPL photorejuvenation treatments, and more, book a consultation with one of our skincare specialists at Okanagan Skin Care Centre in Kelowna today by calling 1-250-868-9290 or by contacting us online


Q: How many times per day should I apply sunscreen?
A: You should be re-applying sunscreen every two hours. 

Q: Can I still get skin cancer in the winter?
A: Yes, you can. That is why it is still extremely important to wear sunscreen in the winter. Although it doesn’t feel warm outside, UV rays are still able to penetrate your skin and cause skin cancer. 

Q: Can UV rays affect me if I am inside?
A: Yes and no. If you are near a lot of windows UVA rays can still penetrate through the glass and cause skin-aging effects such as dark spots and wrinkles as well as increase your risk for skin cancer.

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Donna McAteer

Donna McAteer

Donna is the general manager and has been with the Okana­gan Skin Care Cen­tre for over 14 years. She is a certified Es­theti­cian and previous business owner with over 20 years enjoying the skin care industry. Her passion for knowledge, integral client care and maintaining a syn­er­gis­tic team that represents professional excellence in skin care remains her focus.

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