You are at a greater risk of UV damage when skiing than on the beach, so packing specialist winter sport protection formulas is a must for anyone going on the piste.
Why do I need sun protection when I Ski?
It’s just as important to protect yourself from the sun while skiing as it is on the beach. You’ll be spending all day at high altitude, where the atmosphere is thinner. You are also physically nearer to the sun, and both factors mean that the rays are much stronger compared to when they reach sea level. While skiing you’ve also got a double dose of sun light, because it is reflected back up again by the snow; you’re actually being exposed to UV rays from above and below!
But I’ll be dressed in Ski-gear!
Your face will still be exposed, and your nose, lips and cheeks are your most vulnerable parts. If you are prone to chapped lips, make sure you stock up on a nourishing lip balm with an SPF before you hit the slopes. Sun block or a very high SPF formulation will shield your nose and cheeks from the heightened risk of burning and damage, so make sure that you purchase a formulation that will give you adequate protection. It is important to protect your eyes with a good pair of sunglasses, or better still, special ski goggles.
How can I protect myself from UVA and UVB rays while on the piste?
The best way to protect yourself on the piste is to cover all exposed areas with a very high factor sunscreen. Wearing an adequate block is essential ammunition in the fight against sunburn, premature ageing and skin cancer. Remember that the higher up the mountain you go, the worse the effect of sun exposure will be.
So how do I choose a sunscreen for skiing? Is it the same as choosing a sun cream for a summer holiday?
Almost. The only difference is that while you are skiing you are not out to get a ‘tan’, so you have no excuse not to opt for the highest SPF and UVA rating you can find. Winter sport sun care formulas also differ from summer sun care products in that they are super water-resistant to counter the effects of snow and slush (especially useful if you are a novice skier!).