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  • Jul


    by Deanna Boutte


    If you’ve ever had a bright red sunburn, then you know how important it is to protect yourself while outside in the sun. Long summer days at the beach, lake, or pool are always a good time, but without proper protection, you could be in for an uncomfortable few days that follow. 

    Not only is sunburn painful, but exposure to the sun’s harmful rays can cause cancerous skin conditions like melanoma. And if you get a sunburn, it makes it that much more painful to be out in the sun the following day or two, thereby limiting your outdoor fun. 

    That’s not a reason to stay indoors though. With so many activities to enjoy like surfing, beach volleyball, swimming and snorkeling, there are plenty of things you can do to protect yourself.

    Sun Protection Clothing

    Sun protection clothing is great for active adults, playful children, and everyone in between. A UPF-rated rashguard or swim shirt can make a huge difference, especially at high elevations when applying sunscreen simply isn’t enough. Even on overcast days, you are susceptible to the dangers of the sun and a swim shirt is a simple, reliable solution. Sun shirts have become an especially popular swim accessory for younger kids who might not have the patience to spend the extra 5-minutes applying sunscreen. Tip: Look for a UPF 50+ rating for maximum protection.


    For the parts of your body not covered by sun protective clothing - especially your face, ears, and neck - you will need to use sunscreen. Sunscreen must be applied evenly and often. And although many sunscreens will claim to be “waterproof” and “sweatproof,” that’s not a definite statement. Waterproof sunscreens usually only last up to 80 minutes. Tip: make sure to keep your sunscreen handy and reapply every so often if you’re outside for longer stretches.

    Hats & Visors

    If you enjoy paddle sports, boating, or just lying on the beach, you may want to consider a hat or visor to block the sun. Not only is this a stylish option, but it can mask bad hair days too. Many hats have built-in features to ensure sun protection. Some straw hats like the ones you see lifeguards wear have a UPF 50+ lining under the brim. Other hats have a cape to shield the back of your neck from the sun. Tip: They even make hats for kids, toddlers, and babies that are water resistant!


    Sunglasses aren’t just for looks! Believe it or not, you can get a sunburn in your eyes, so wearing sunglasses is the best thing you can do to prevent UV damage to the cornea. The sun can reflect off the surface of the water so even if you aren’t looking directly at the sun, looking at the pool, lake, river, or ocean can damage your eyes too. Tip: Look for the sticker that says “100% UV protection” for the most coverage.

    Now that you have some tools to protect yourself and your family from the harsh sun, what are your favorite warm-weather travel destinations this summer?

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