If skiers share one unifying trait, it's that we live from exposure. Our energy comes from being immersed in the wild spaces and places that we feel so connected to. Whether it be carving groomers, searching for pow in the backcountry, or using helicopters to access remote peaks, the connection to the outdoors is exhilarating and intoxicating.

Protekt Products built their company on the shared stoke of the entire outdoor community with the sole mission of keeping those who love to be outside safe and healthy, all while keeping those places they love healthy as well. They produce an assortment of organic sunscreens and supplements to support the lifestyles of those who identify with the company’s mantra: Live from exposure.

Nick Norris, a co-founder of Protekt, embodies this mantra in the fullest. An ex-Navy SEAL turned rock climber and father, Norris is an All-American badass who has felt an ethereal connection with the mountains since a young age. 

“I’ve always had a deep connection with the outdoors, even as a Chicago kid,” says Norris. “I grew up with a father who was a firefighter, so he had a lot of time off and he would take us hiking in places like Arizona, Colorado, and New Mexico. He always wanted to bring us up into the mountains. So I think that at a young age I was really just drawn there.”

Protekt Co-Founder Nick Norris

Former U.S. Navy SEAL and Protekt co-founder Nick Norris.

Norris grew up skiing in the midwest, on what he described as landfills covered in snow with a chairlift, but even that was enough to spark the addiction and a lifelong love of the mountains. 

“I have really fond memories of going to Steamboat on a road trip with my little brother, Chris,” Norris recalls, “and instead of going to Mexico or somewhere warm for spring break my senior year, my buddy and I went to Whistler to ski.”

Related: My First Time - Whistler Blackcomb

Tragically, Norris’ brother Chris was killed in an inbounds avalanche at Winter Park, Colo., in 2012. As difficult of a time as this was, Norris describes it as being a driving force behind his lifestyle and Protekt. 

“Through all the grief, I have never lost the connection to the things that I have always loved and the things that I recognize my brother always loved," he says. "One of those things was the mountains, so that has become an integral part of my life.”

“It has been part of the fuel that drove us to launch the company as well as in changing my mindset and the way I view the world and life,” Norris continues. “That’s what the company is really all about. We don’t look at ourselves as a company that just produces a product, we look at ourselves as a lifestyle company, providing people little micro-tools through our products that inspire them to get out into the beautiful world we live in. I feel like I owe it to my little brother and to myself to do that and allow for other people to do that.”

Protekt offers four organic sunscreen products made only with zinc oxide, so they’re good for your body and the environment. They also offer an assortment of all-natural supplements, built around Norris’ routine and what he has personally found to be the most effective in his own life. These include an Organic Vitamin Tincture formula and Lion’s Mane Mushroom Complex Capsules. Be sure to keep an eye out for a number of new products to be released this fall.

“What I’ve found is that the most impactful things you can do for yourself are sleep well and hydrate,” says Norris. “So we built products that are focused on promoting a routine of hydration and better sleep, hopefully giving people better clarity of thought, better focus, and ultimately supporting overall wellness, beyond even just a physical standpoint.”

Norris and the folks over at Protekt know how important it is not only to get out and explore the mountains but also to protect your physical and mental health while doing so. They exude the passion and adventurous spirit that defines the outdoor sports community. They live from exposure and have created a product line to help the rest of the world do the same.

Read more: Pro Skiers Give Mental Health Tips for Quarantine

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