Sun Solutions

Winter sun damage can be just as bad as in summer.

The irony of winter outdoors is that although it's cold, it's easy to get toasted. "Solar radiation reflects off the snow, burning you from underneath, from above, and from the sides," says the Army's Murray Hamlet. To guard against the sun's sneak attacks:

  • Protect your eyes: "You can get pitting of the corneas or burn the retinas on the backsides of your eyes or get snow blindness," warns Hamlet, who recommends wearing sunglasses with shields on the sides, even when it's a cloudy day or the sun appears to be behind a haze.
  • Don't neglect the little spots: "Put sunscreen on the underside of your nose, on your eyelids, in and around your ears," Hamlet says.
  • Keep protection handy: Author and physician Howard Donner recommends wearing lip balm on a cord around your neck, since "most people are too lazy to take it out of a pack when they need it." Or keep lip balm, sunscreen, and sunglasses in an easy-access jacket pocket or fanny pack.