Srinagar: Come Chillaikalan and the thoughts of sun exposure goes out of our mind. But even in winter, when the days are short and the sun often hides behind the clouds, Ultraviolet rays (UV) are beaming down ready to hit our skin.
Skincare experts in Kashmir believe that people want to ease up on sunscreen use during the winter, as the sun feels weaker and they are less likely to burn.
Dermatologist, Dr Faizan Shah said the basic purpose of sunscreen is to protect skin from harmful effects of UVA and UVB rays (two basic types of ultraviolet rays)
“Although these might decrease in winter due to cloud cover or when a person is indoors. But still, a major portion of UV light is able to penetrate through the clouds even when the heat is not scorching. Similarly, a significant proportion of UV light enters,” Dr Shah said.
He added, while sunscreen may be more important during the summer months or when the sun is scorching or during peak hours (11 am to 3 pm), it is also needed during the rest of the time.
Here are some benefits of using sunscreen in winters:
Harsh winds and low moisture
The reason most people tend to have dry skin during winters is that there’s low moisture in the atmosphere and the cold winter winds are harsh. This drains the moisture off your skin, increasing the risk of wrinkles, cracks and infections. Using a moisturizing sunscreen is a good way to restore the moisture levels of your skin.
Cancer risks don’t go down in winter
Winter might mean less sunlight but sun damage can still occur. Exposure to UV rays is much higher during winter, which increases the risks of sunburns, spots and therefore might increase the chances of skin cancer too. UV exposure is specifically linked to melanoma, which is the deadliest form of skin cancer. Putting on a thick layer of sunscreen can reduce these risks substantially.
Sunscreen wears off faster during winters
You might think sweating makes sunscreen last for less time during summer, but this problem persists during winter too. Winter winds and sudden rains can easily degrade the layer of sunscreen you applied in the morning and the lack of moisture in the air also makes your skin feel drier. This calls for repeated application of sunscreen during winter days too.
Early signs of ageing
Due to prolonged exposure to the sun and blue light rays, the skin faces issues like free radical damage that results in faster ageing. This makes it sensitive to certain issues like degradation of pre-existing collagen and broken elastin fibres that can lead to the skin becoming thin, resulting in wrinkles and fine lines. Sunscreen helps in reducing early signs of ageing and simultaneously gives a hint of a glowing complexion.
Pigmentation refers to the dark patches on the skin due to excess melanin production which occurs due to constant exposure to sun rays, dirt and pollution. Using sunscreen helps to protect the skin from pigmentation caused by harmful UV rays.