It may be cold and windy during the winter season, but neither the low temperatures nor the gusty winds reduce the damaging effects of the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays. Below are some facts about winter weather and your skin:
- More than 90 percent of all skin cancers are associated with sun exposure.
- No matter what the temperature is outside, you can get sunburn
- UVA rays that penetrate the skin and promote collagen breakdown are just as strong in the winter, even on cloudy days
- Snow reflects up to 80 percent of the UV light from the sun, meaning that you are often hit by the same rays twice
- The strength of the sun’s UV rays increases as the elevation increases. UV radiation exposure increases 4 to 5 percent with every 1,000 feet above sea level
- Both snow and strong wind can wear away sunscreen and reduce its effectiveness
Board Certified Plastic Surgeon Brian S. Glatt, MD, FACS of Premier Plastic Surgery Center of New Jersey offers these winter sunscreen tips:
- Always wear sunscreen – every day in every season
- Apply a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 for daily use
- If you’re heading to the slopes, choose a sunscreen with a higher SPF
- Apply sunscreen 30 minutes before outdoor activities and reapply every two hours
- Apply enough sunscreen – at least one teaspoon to your face
- Do not forget to apply sunscreen to your lips, ears, back of the neck, scalp and hands
The daily use of sunscreen can help you avoid the damage the sun, wind and cold can cause. To discuss your daily skin care regimen please call our office at 973-889-9300 to schedule an appointment with one of our Skin Care Specialists.