By: Dr. Craig Crippen

Your Winter Skin Care Resolutions

During the cold winter months, many people long for the sunny and warm days of summer. And it’s hard to blame them. What, with all the available sunshine, the summer season provides the perfect time for people to work on their tans. The popular activity of sunbathing, however, is just not a healthful practice.

As we discussed in last week’s blog, the sun can still manifest its negative impact on our skin during the winter months as well. And while sunbathing is generally not a winter activity, attention to skin protection during the colder months of the year is still a necessity. So how about we all agree to make joint new year’s skin care resolutions?

“In 2012, I will work harder on protecting my skin from the harmful rays of the sun.” Believe it or not, this is a resolution that shouldn’t be too hard to keep. It will simply take a bit of effort. But it will seem effortless once you train your mind to remember that being out in the sun is something that should be done with care.
Did you know that the sun causes 90% of all skin cancers? This is likely because on days that don’t seem so sunny, most people neglect to put on any sunscreen, assuming that the sun’s rays won’t get to them. However, 70-80% of the sun’s ultraviolet rays can still penetrate through cloud cover.

Keep in mind that winter actually provides the sun with more opportunities to help those rays get to your skin. In fact, the sun is 80% stronger when it is reflected off of snow. If you spend a lot of time outdoors during the winter, you will want to do your best to avoid being out at high noon.

Many people believe that being out in the sun is actually a healthy thing to do. “It gives you vitamin D,” many say. And while this is true, you need very little sun exposure to get the vitamin D you need. According to, “if you live in the tropics and can expose your unprotected skin to two sessions of 15 minutes of sunlight each week your body will naturally produce adequate amounts of vitamin D.”

Imagine that even those who constantly live in the sunshine still only need a half an hour of sunshine per week for adequate intake of vitamin D. Keep in mind, we can also get vitamin D from such food products as fortified milk and salmon as well as from vitamin supplements.

Again, protecting your skin from the sun should be a top priority. A great way to stick to your new skin care resolutions and protect your skin from the sun in the new year is through Elta-MD Skin Care and Sun Care Products. Check out their website for more information on them. And may you all have a very happy and safe 2012!