Now more than ever, people tend to understand the importance of wearing sunscreen. Even when we want a nice tan in the summertime, we still try to wear some level of sunscreen to keep out the harmful UV rays that cause skin cancer. And while we may remember to slab on some sunscreen during the most obvious situations (like heading to the beach), we forget about other not-so-obvious situations, like when driving to and from work or running errands. We also may fail to realize the fact that the sun’s rays are still dangerous during wintertime (although not as severe). But it isn’t just sunscreen you should worry about; your clothing should also be responsible for blocking out harmful UV rays. As such, here are some examples of situations when you should not only wear sunscreen but also wear appropriate attire to protect your skin and keep your entire body healthy.
Summer is when the sun is closest to us and the UV rays have less of a distance to travel to cause sunburn and skin cancer. So besides packing your strongest sunscreen possible for your trip to the beach or pool this summer, don’t forget about using your clothing as an added layer of protection. Try to wear a shirt over your swimsuit when not in the water so you have a little bit of extra protection, and make sure it has some sort of ultraviolet protection factor, or UPF (50 is best). You may want to even consider a women’s rashguard over your swimsuit, which is great for drying quickly and protecting your skin from the sun. They’re also really stylish and versatile!
The sun doesn’t care whether you’re going out for a casual walk, playing a round of golf, or raking the leaves in autumn — no matter what you are doing outside, you should consider clothing with built-in sun protection. Even short-sleeve women’s shirts should have an element of sun protection considering the shoulders are often first to get hit by the sun’s rays. If you’re being especially active, make sure it is rated UPF 50 and look for snag-resistant polyester with stretch for greater ease of movement. It should also be moisture-wicking and comfortable while keeping its shape, wash after wash. Don’t forget sunscreen on any exposed body part (even the little bit of your face that might be exposed while shoveling snow during wintertime).
That rosy glow you get on your cheeks and nose after spending a day on the slopes isn’t just from the brisk air — there’s a strong possibility that it could be a bit of sunburn as well. When doing anything in the snow, you get exposed to the sun not only directly overhead but also from the snow on the ground, which reflects right back onto your face. Combine that with the fact that your skin is likely already dry from winter weather, and you’ll realize that your poor skin is practically begging for a little bit of added protection from the sun. So, whether skiing, sledding, or ice fishing, sunscreen is just as important of a tool to keep on you as your skis, sled, and fishing rod.
Have you ever gone on a long road trip and noticed that one of your arms is more tan than the other? That’s because the clear glass will block the sun’s UVB rays, but allows up to 75% of the UVA rays through. The same holds true with offices. People who work or sit near office windows for long periods are at a higher risk of sun damage than those without a window, making that coveted corner office not so special after all. As such, anyone who heads out for a drive or works near a window (no matter what time of year), should wear sunscreen at least on their face. Whether in the car, in the office, or next to a home window wearing your work from home apparel, you should strongly consider wearing clothing with sun protection built in to protect the rest of your body.
Throughout your lifetime, up to 80% of the UV damage caused to your skin can be blamed on short-term exposure — no matter what time of year it is. Since you can’t always plan for short-term exposure, it’s best to get into the habit of wearing sunscreen daily so you don’t forget. Add an extra layer of sun protection by wearing clothing that protects you from as much of the sun’s UV rays as possible for extra peace of mind.