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Winter Is Here! Don’t Leave Home Without Your Shades

It's official! Winter is here, which means in some areas whipping winds and cold rain, snow and sleet aren't far behind. Most of us would never even think of leaving the house without a jacket in icy climates, however unfortunately, many people leave their sunglasses behind. Although the sun may not be our first consideration when we are venturing out to the frigid winter climate, the sun's rays are still shining down during the winter months, and in many instances can be even stronger.

For times when you live in or plan to visit a location with snow, it is wise to be even more careful. In particular in the aftermath of a snow storm, the world around takes on a glistening glimmer due to the sun's rays reflecting off of the water molecules blanketing the ground and the trees. In fact, for many it can be painful to open your eyes when you first step outside following a glistening snowfall. The ultraviolet exposure that most people are so vigilant in protecting ourselves against during the summertime can really be more dangerous during the winter since it reflects off the snow or ice, resulting in a double dose of exposure. This is why sunglasses are a crucial part of your winter wardrobe.

Although it's important to pick a style you look good in, the most important part of choosing sunglasses is checking that they will properly protect your eyes. Make sure your sunglasses block 100 percent of UV rays by checking for an indication that they block all light up to 400 nanometers - UV400. The good news is you don't necessarily have to purchase designer glasses for adequate protection for your eyes. Dozens of affordable options exist that still provide full UV defense.

Another important feature in choosing sun wear is size. You will have the most protection when your glasses are large enough to completely guard your eyes and the surrounding areas. The more coverage you have, the less harmful UV rays will be able to enter. Wrap around frames will also keep harmful rays from sneaking in from the sides.

For those who enjoy snow or ice sports, it’s important to be aware that ultraviolet rays are stronger at peak heights, so you need to be especially cautious to keep your eyes covered on the hills. In addition to sunglasses, it's a good idea to put on a protective hat with a wide brim or visor.

This wintertime, keep warm and stay protected! Make your sunglasses a fixed part of your routine.