Why You Should Wear Sunscreen in the Winter, Too

Sunscreen is widely associated with protecting our skin from the harsh summer sun as we frolic in the surf and build sand castles in the sand.   But the truth is that the sun’s powerful UV rays are still just as harmful in the winter as they are in the summer. The sun doesn’t take a vacation!  And the harmful UVA radiation that it produces is just as damaging to our skin in the winter, including causing wrinkles and contributing to the risk of skin cancer.

In fact, as people begin engaging in winter sports such as skiing and snowboarding they should be aware that snow reflects the sun’s radiation at a much higher rate than sand does – making protection from the sun an absolute necessity when engaging in activities in the snow.

To keep your skin looking healthy and radiant and lower the risk of skin cancer, follow these tips to keep yourself protected from the damaging effects of the sun this winter season:

Continue to Wear Sunscreen

Don’t stop applying your daily coverage of SPF now that the weather has cooled off. Applying a daily SPF moisturizer each morning is a good habit that should be kept up all year long. Make sure to carry some with you throughout the day so you can reapply as you sweat and move around. Also be sure that you utilize a daily moisturizer that is at least 30 SPF.

Don’t Forget to Protect Your Lips

Our lips are vulnerable to sun damage too, and dry, chapped lips in the winter are no fun. To protect your lips from sun damage and keep them looking healthy and attractive, use a lip balm that is at least SPF 15 and reapply frequently throughout the day.

Utilize Fashion for Protection

Hats and scarves are more than just fun winter fashion accessories.  They are also great ways to protect your neck, face, and scalp from sun damage. Sunglasses should also still be worn in the winter.   Large frames help give additional protection to the skin around the eyes and UV coated lenses protect eyes from UV damage.

Protect Your Hands and Face While Driving

UV rays can penetrate glass, which puts the side of our body closest to the window directly exposed to harmful UV rays while we are driving. For those who travel often or have long daily commutes, this can add up to many weekly hours of harmful exposure. To stay protected keep a bottle of sunscreen and protectant lip balm in your car and apply it to your face, hands, and any other exposed areas before you get on your way.

Anyone For Tennis?

There’s no doubt tennis is a wonderful sport and something I am passionate about.  It’s not just the thrill of hitting the little green ball and perhaps winning an important point, it’s the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors when the weather is good.  Not to mention there’s a fantastic social side to it too. I’ve made many new friends since I started playing tennis so I’ve always got a tennis partner when I want a game. It’s an invigorating sport, great for keeping fit and it’s something all the family can enjoy.  As well as playing, it’s super to watch too – who doesn’t feel themselves totally immersed in the US Open, Wimbledon or the other Grand Slam title tournaments?  Plus I love picking up tennis tips from the tennis greats!

My Body Loves Tennis…

I don’t play tennis to win trophies of course; I play it for pure enjoyment and mental exhilaration.  I also play tennis to stay in shape because it gives me a full body workout.  When you play tennis you are always on the move.  You are up on your feet, running to get to that lob, twisting your body to play a backhand and turning to slice the ball over the net. Unlike going to the gym, I don’t even notice the workout because I am so engrossed in the game I’m playing.  It’s much more pleasurable experience than a gruelling hour with my personal trainer!  As an amateur player (although I hope I can hold my own when I play a game with a semi-professional player) I burn up to 600 calories an hour. I think that’s a fantastic way of staying healthy especially as I’m on court up to 2 hours at a time.

My Heart Loves Tennis…

Playing tennis is good for the heart too. The constant movement helps your heart to pump blood round your body and reduces blood pressure.  I find it’s a great stress reliever, if ever I feel a little anxious just one hour on the tennis court helps me to feel refreshed and rejuvenated. This is good for the heart because your heart doesn’t need excessive stress.

My Mind Loves Tennis…

Tennis is a sport which engages your mind, you have to think strategically and make split second decisions.  This is excellent for working out your brain as it stimulates it, making it think very quickly.  Did you know that it’s a sport recommended for those with early stage dementia or Alzheimer’s disease?  This is because our brains need oxygen to work and the more exercise you do, the more oxygen you bring to your brain so tennis helps your brain function better.  A healthy brain can help to boost memory and your capacity for learning. Dementia sufferers often report feeling large amounts of stress and tennis soothes a worried mind.

Remember, tennis is very social so it helps with growing social skills too. Not only that, tennis has beneficial effects on mood, helping you to feel positive and happy and I believe it’s great for mental determination and emotional strength.

Staying Safe Playing Tennis

The best part of playing tennis for me is being outside, feeling the breeze, enjoying the sunshine, the handsome tennis club’s building I play at and the scent of freshly mowed lawns if I’m on a grass court.  I do play indoors if the weather isn’t good but it’s not quite the same so I prefer outdoor courts.  However, living in a hot climate means there are safety risks when it comes to the sun so I play early morning or late afternoon/early evening when the sun isn’t as strong. I never play between 11.00am and 4.00pm as the sun is too dangerous.  I am very conscious of the sun’s harmful rays, whatever time of day, so here are my top tips to staying sun-safe while playing tennis:

  • I always make sure that I am wearing sufficient amounts of sunscreen on all exposed areas and I only use factor 50.
  • I also make my own flavoured water, I slice strawberries, lemons and limes and drop theme into a 3.5 pint bottle of water. This sweetens the water naturally and stops me from dehydrating.  Another tip is to drink before you play a tennis game in hot weather, but don’t be tempted to over-drink because there’s nothing more uncomfortable than running around a court with water sloshing in your belly!
  • I wear a hat to protect my hair, top of my head and my face.
  • I wear tennis whites but I choose special clothing which has its own UPF protection. You will see here I am wearing my Nike Dri-FIT UV top with a Nike Tennis Skirt.  This skirt has built-in leggings (sometimes called Skapris) keeping my legs cool and protected.
  • I prefer to wear specialist sunglasses to play tennis, I love my Bolle tennis sunglasses because not only do they look fabulous, they protect my eyes from the sun and because they are specialist, they also give me the ability to see the tennis ball against any background.

Tennis always makes me smile, I believe it’s impossible to play a game without feeling content and even when I’ve had a tough day I feel I lighten the load after a good game. What sport makes you smile?

Tennis and Sun protection

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Walk in the soft warmth of the sun

There is a time of the day when the sun isn’t as active and I can go out to enjoy its golden glow. Forty-five minutes before the sun sinks and the evening begins, UV ratings are at their lowest, and the light is friendlier to the skin. During this time, I grab the opportunity for a walk outside and bask in the soft warmth of the sun.

This walk along the beach with my family is one such time. Here, I wore a casual tank top with a long, flowy maxi wrap for extra cover. Darker fabrics actually let in less UV, and so this one is just fitting. I accessorized minimally to keep it easy. One is this gold cuff, which adds a touch of edge, and another is a fedora hat with a black bow detail, which lends a bit of drama to the outfit. Hats are another stylish accessory that helps protect from the sun, and these days, they can be worn in places other than the beach. I could talk about that some time.

Spending time at the beach, however, also means having to run the risk of getting sunburns.  While the rest of my family isn’t as strict as I am about sun protection, they still like to take extra precautions and stick to general rules that make them avoid UV rays as much as possible. Some of those that we swear by are these:

Create an agenda to avoid the midday sun—which is when it’s most harmful—by doing activities indoors. In such cases where outdoor activities are inevitable, try to prevent sunburn by seeking shade under a tree, a pop-up tent, or simply by using an umbrella.

Covering up the arms and legs—perhaps with a long-sleeved t-shirt, or pants, or maxi skirts—also help. This way, your clothes absorb UV rays and less of them penetrate your skin. Accessories like hats are great for shading the area of the face, as I mentioned earlier. There are, in fact, a variety of styles available that can cover everything from the scalp to the neck.

Putting on sunscreen, of course, is a general sun-protection tip that I do believe everyone must go by, including children. Anything with at least SPF 15, plus UVA and UVB protection are most recommended.


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Tasseled Maxi Dress for Sun Sensible Lifestyle

I underwent a little bit of a heartbreak when I realized that committing to a sun sensible lifestyle meant that my wardrobe will be limited to full-length pieces. That means that none of those cute camisoles, sophisticated culottes, or short playsuits will make it into my day closet; I would have to start dressing for maximum coverage. What I discovered for my kind of lifestyle, though, is that the fashion industry has endless, stylish options for any dressing needs I had—I just really had to be open to the challenge and learn the rules of the style game.

One trick I learned? If you’re stocking up on full-length pieces, vamp it up with prints, patterns, trimmings, and inventive silhouettes. That way, you keep things playful and interesting.

One case in point I’ve had is this Dodo Bar Or tasseled maxi dress. It’s a breezy maxi dress made from black and white cotton-gauze, with a geometric op-art print that is no short of enchanting. It’s incredibly detailed, and I love every bit of it, from the silhouette-defining tassel trimmings to the gathered skirt. Needless to say, this dress has officially become my favorite for the summer, and I can’t rave enough about it!

The dress is already a showstopper, but I wanted to maximize it by pairing it with dark Celine sunglasses and a skull-embellished, black cowboy Bullhide hat. I wore it to lunch on the beach, and then a local town center for a casual shopping session with some of my friends.

I always get so ecstatic when I find something this intensely stylish for my sun sensible wardrobe. It doesn’t hurt that it’s versatile, too; I can definitely see myself wearing a lot more frequently and styling it in new ways in the future.

Sun Sensible Style Dodo Bar Or


Photographed by Max VanderNoot  https://www.facebook.com/maxvandernootphoto/?fref=ts