Written by: Shammara Lawrence 

Ski season is officially underway!

If you’ve never been skiing before, you’re probably wondering what to bring and how to prepare. As excited as you may be about trying out something new, it can also be nerve-racking. I’ve been there.  Fortunately for you, I’m here to help with some sage advice on what to expect for your first ski trip.

Earlier this year, I went skiing for the first time in Utah on a press trip and absolutely loved it. I had the chance to go to two of the top ski places in the state — Powder Mountain and Alta Ski Area — where I learned a lot about skiing and some important lessons for my next ski trip I’m happy to impart. Below are my top ten tips first-time skiers should keep in mind before embarking on your first ski trip. 

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Pack two sets of ski clothing 

I learned this lesson the hard way. After a long day of skiing, chances are your ski clothing will feel a little gross by all the sweat it’s collected. And who wants to wear sweaty clothes day in and day out? Pack two sets of ski comfortable clothes that you can alternate between during your trip. ASOS has an awesome selection of ski gear, which comes in a wide range of sizes, including plus sizes. 

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Dress in layers 

No matter where you end up going for your first ski trip, it will be cold. Layer up with long, thick socks and thermal undergarments underneath your ski clothes to keep you warm while you’re outside. Also, don’t forget gloves to insulate your hands while skiing. 

While you’re at it, add a cute hat and earmuffs to your suitcase for extra warmth. 

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Take professional lessons 

I cannot recommend taking professional lessons enough. Having someone to show you the ropes will make your experience a thousand times better rather than attempting to learn how to ski on your own on the bunny slopes. Not only can they show you great tips and tricks but they’ll also make sure to take you to the most appropriate slopes and ensure you’re having a fun experience.  

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Rent your equipment 

Unless you plan on going skiing regularly, it’s probably better and more cost-effective to rent your ski equipment rather than buying your own. You can either borrow gear like your helmet and ski boots from the resort you’re staying at or rent it from a ski company in your city before embarking on your trip. Just make sure to take good care of it to avoid inquiring extra charges. 

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Don’t overextend yourself

Go easy on yourself. Your body will thank you. Don’t get me wrong, skiing can definitely be a hardcore work out, but it should be also be something you enjoy. Have fun and pace yourself so that you don’t feel burnt out and in need of another vacation just to rest at the end of your trip. 

Pack fluids and snacks 

Like I was saying, skiing is a bonafide workout. Stay hydrated and bring small, yummy snacks to eat during your downtimes so that you don’t feel completely depleted in between meals. 

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Take it easy your first day 

Altitude sickness is real. To mitigate your chances of getting it, give yourself a day or two to chill out and get acclimated to the high elevation before hitting the slopes. That way, you’ll be in good shape once it’s time to go skiing. 

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Don’t forget sun protection!

You should always be wearing sunscreen no matter the weather, but it’s especially important to protect your skin while skiing, as you’re body is more exposed to harmful sun rays than normal. Glossier’s Invisible Shield is my personal favorite for the face and Forever Young Body Butter (sunscreen and body lotion in one) from Supergoop is great for the body. Both blend seamlessly into the skin without leaving an unsightly white cast. 

Bring motion sickness meds 

Sometimes, no matter what you do, altitude sickness takes hold, leaving you feeling crappy and sluggish. Speaking from personal experience, it’s an awful feeling. Pack motion sickness medication just in case this happens which will help alleviate some of the awful symptoms so you can get back to skiing as quickly as possible. 

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Invest in good snow boots

Chances are you won’t be skiing every single minute of your trip, so you’ll need quality snow boots to walk around in when you’re not on the mountain. Brands like UGG, ASOS carry a wide range of options that not only reasonably priced and aesthetically pleasing but also keep your feet incredibly warm.