October 6, 2008

Don’t Shelve the Sunblock – Sunburn Risk Can Be Even Greater in Winter

RENO, Nev., Oct. 6 /PRNewswire/ -- If you think now is the time to sideline your sunblock, think again. Head to the mountains this fall or winter and you could get burned twice as fast as you do at the beach. According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), UVA rays from the sun increase exponentially with altitude and can be significantly more damaging in the mountains than at sea level.

Located in the heart of Lake Tahoe's Sierra ski country and founded by a female dermatology insider, Sierra Summits specifically formulated its High Altitude Adventure Sunblock (SPF 40) to meet the demands of high-altitude activities and exposure. The lightweight product offers high performance and dependable sun protection for even the most stringent winter or altitude conditions. The company is now distributing this product nationwide via its Web site, http://www.sierrasummits.com/, and to select retailers in California, Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, Virginia, Texas, New York, North Carolina, Idaho, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin, Virginia and Vermont.

"During the winter, even cautious outdoor enthusiasts may unknowingly put their skin at risk by leaving it unprotected or under-protected," said Sierra Summits' founder and CEO Jennifer Rice, PA. "Cool weather may lull people into thinking they don't need sunscreen when, in fact, UV rays are intensified by snow and high altitudes."

Snow reflects 80 percent of UV rays and UV intensity increases by 10 percent for every 1,000-foot increase in elevation. In the mountains or snow, skin can burn more severely in less time. The AAD recommends applying sunscreen whenever you intend to be in the sun for more than 20 minutes, no matter what time of year it is. Yet a recent study by the Environmental Working Group found that many sunscreen products on the market simply do not offer the level of sunscreen protection recommended to effectively guard against sun damage, including skin cancer.

Rice, who worked directly with patients for years in the dermatology community, created Sierra Summits High Altitude Adventure Sunblock after hearing patients complain that there was no affordable product on the market that protected skin under intense, high-altitude conditions. She designed the Sierra Summits formulation to offer multiple-hour, broad spectrum, high-altitude and photostable protection against UVB and UVA rays even on the highest peaks, while offering supreme comfort through its lightweight, hypoallergenic formula. Sierra Summits' formulation has been verified by independent laboratory test results and ranks as providing "high protection" under a stringent new FDA-proposed labeling program.

"People who live and play in the Sierras are serious about sun protection," says Rice. "I am committed to helping everyone from endurance athletes to vacationers make high performance skincare an affordable priority."

Sierra Summits Sunblock ($7.95 for 1.5 oz tube, $25 for 8 oz) is available online at http://www.sierrasummits.com/ and in select retail outlets throughout the country, including: Raley's Fine Foods and Orvis.

About Sierra Summits

Sierra Summits is a small, independent, woman-owned skincare company based in the Lake Tahoe area in the Sierra Mountains. Sierra Summits specialty products include High Altitude Adventure Sunblock, 4Paws (soothing and healing balm for dogs' paws), Adios (natural bug repellent), TrailHealer (natural healing balm for scrapes, contusions and abrasions) and therapeutic lip ointment. The company produces eco- and budget-friendly bulk packaging for easy refill options all year long. Sierra Summits products are available online at http://www.sierrasummits.com/ and at select retail stores throughout the country.

"Only Rookies Get Burned: Keeping your Skin Safe in the Winter"

-- Don't go naked! Wear broad spectrum sunscreen (filters both UVA and UVB rays) year-round if you plan to be outside for 20 minutes or more.

-- Know your burn: Don't assume it's windburn -- many people mistake sunburn for windburn due to similar symptoms, especially in cold winter conditions.

-- Save the mask for Mardi Gras: Take adequate time to make sure your face is evenly protected throughout the day.

-- Aim high: When in higher altitudes (or around snow or water), choose an SPF of 30 or above.

-- Protect your peepers: Don't forget to protect your eyes; they can get burned too! Wear sunglasses or goggles with UV protection in the snow -- you'll look cool and your eyes will thank you.

-- Avoid pink. By the time you notice a sunburn, it's already too late. Apply sunscreen to all exposed skin early and often.

-- Sport a hat. Your scalp is especially susceptible to burn in higher altitudes.

-- Suit up. If you are in a profession that demands routine sun exposure, such as a pilot, flight attendant, resort employee, helicopter surveillance, etc. don't discount the damage your job may invite. Consider sunblock part of your daily uniform.

Sierra Summits

CONTACT: Karmina Zafiro of Fineman PR, +1-415-392-1000,[email protected], for Sierra Summits

Web site: http://www.sierrasummits.com/