Sun, sea and sand in the middle of winter – ‘what’s to survive?’ I hear you cry!
OK, so I can’t really complain as we’ve just returned from an amazing family trip to Dubai. But, as I sit here staring out at the grey skies of Bedfordshire after my first winter sun holiday, I can tell you there are a few different things to think about.
I love getting ready for a holiday and building the anticipation. I love picking up cute outfits for the kids, dusting off my bikini and buying pint sized toiletries at the supermarket. Remember though, the shops are geared for the season so all these things can be difficult to find in the UK in winter. Baby A had moved up a clothes size since the summer so I didn’t have any appropriate clothes for her and struggled to find some. In good news though, buying off season can lead to some great bargains. I picked up a sun hat, a pair of sunglasses and two pairs of sandals in the Mothercare sale for a total of £4!!
2. Sun protection
We all know we need to wear suncream to protect our skin from UV rays but that doesn’t mean we necessarily do it! When our skin hasn’t seen the sun for months there can be a temptation to ‘make the most of it’ and skimp on the sun cream. But it’s because your skin hasn’t seen the sun for months that you need it even more.
We used Boots Soltan Once range while we were away, which offers 8 hour protection. This is great as it means you can apply it in the morning and be protected all day, although I would always top up the children again, especially after going in the water. It went on quite thickly but this was reassuring and made it easy to see you had covered everywhere and it soaked in quickly. I also loved the Soltan Active stick for lips and face as this was perfect for keeping in my pocket for a quick touch up. The smell of suntan lotion instantly reminds me of holidays and the Soltan range smelt lovely, especially the Moisture and Repel aftersun, which included an insect repellent – great for warding off any desert midges.
3. Travelling outfits
We’ve all seen those people at the airport – the ones waiting for the car parking bus in the rain in shorts and flip flops. But it’s difficult to know what to wear when you are travelling between such differing climates. Layers are the way forward! I didn’t want to be lugging around big heavy coats when I knew we wouldn’t need them but still wanted everyone to be warm on the way to and from the airport. So we dressed in lots of layers and lightweight waterproof jackets which I packed away in our hold luggage. This was also useful for the plan ride as you never know how hot or cold it will be in the cabin.
4. Beating the blues
One of the most difficult things about a winter sun holiday – and I know you won’t feel sorry for me if you have been stuck at home all January! – is returning to the miserable weather. It’s very easy to quickly lose that holiday feeling when all you are faced with is drizzle and frost. So, it’s important to have a few fun things lined up. These don’t have to be big adventures – although I am already planning mine – but meeting friends, a day trip or a new project to get stuck in to can all help you feel better.
Oh, and I might also have been googling ‘jobs in Dubai’!
What are your top tips for surviving a winter sun holiday?
*This is a sponsored post written in collaboration with Boots Soltan*