JAN 07, 2017 08:48 AM PST

Why SPF is Not Just For the Summer

WRITTEN BY: Xuan Pham

When the summer sun is shining, people are more conscious about taking care of their skin. In the blistering winter, however, do we still need to lather on the sunscreen? The answer is a resounding "Yes!".

Just because it's cold outside doesn't mean your skin needs any less protection. In fact, "winter skin is more sensitive to sun than tanned summer skin," said Frank Schwanke, a skin researcher for Nivea. Schwanke explained that the pale skin in winter means that we have less melanin to protect against ultraviolet (UV) radiation. As such, "the skin is not only less tanned, but also more sensitive to UV radiation when it comes to a day with a lot of sunshine," said Schwanke.

And the UV rays are still present in the wintertime. The two types of UV radiation are UVA and UVB rays. While UVB rays are weaker when the sun is down or at certain seasons, UVA rays are the same strength at all times of day and all year long. This ray is mostly responsible for skin aging, while UVB is responsible for triggering burning and cancer.

Thus, even if it's cold or cloudy outside, don't skimp on the sunscreen! Watch the video to learn more!
About the Author
  • I am a human geneticist, passionate about telling stories to make science more engaging and approachable. Find more of my writing at the Hopkins BioMedical Odyssey blog and at TheGeneTwist.com.
You May Also Like
OCT 31, 2018
Videos
OCT 31, 2018
How many times can you skip a stone?
What's your record for how many times you can skip a stone? Turns out the current world record for Most Consecutive Skips on the Water is 88 skips in o...
NOV 07, 2018
Videos
NOV 07, 2018
The Threat of Neglected Tropical Diseases
Did you know that around one billion people suffer from a neglected tropical disease?...
NOV 19, 2018
Space & Astronomy
NOV 19, 2018
Kepler Scientists Reflect on the Now Retired Mission
NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope recently ran out of fuel, preventing it from aligning its antenna toward Earth and maintaining communication. NASA knew...
NOV 27, 2018
Chemistry & Physics
NOV 27, 2018
Unraveling the Secret Behind the Strength of Spider Web
You don't need to watch a Spider-Man movie to notice how tough a spider web can be. Made of fiber-based spider silk, the seemingly fragile structure ca...
NOV 27, 2018
Videos
NOV 27, 2018
The Challenge of Creating a Vaccine for HIV
The CDC estimates that 1.1 million people in the US have HIV, and around 15% are unaware they have it....
DEC 09, 2018
Videos
DEC 09, 2018
Retina Organoids Help Researchers Learn More About Color Vision
Researchers are growing mini-retinas to learn more about color vision, and why it's dysfunctional in some people....
Loading Comments...