Love the great outdoors but hate reapplying sunscreen? What if there was a way to enjoy your time in the sun without risking UV damage to your skin?
Believe it or not, there are more ways to protect your skin than lathering up the SPF.
Whether you want to enjoy your favorite activities grease-free or work safely without worrying about skin cancer, UPF clothing is your one-stop solution.
Follow along to discover what UPF clothing is and how it can change the way you look at sun protection.
What Is UPF Clothing?
UPF, standing for Ultraviolet Protection Factor is a measure used to describe how much ultraviolet radiation (UVA and UVB rays) is penetrating a fabric to reach your skin.
While all clothing does provide some level of protection, UPF clothing is specifically designed to shield your skin from harmful rays. It’s like sunscreen without the mess!
To give you a clearer idea of the UPF measures, let’s break down a UPF 50 rating. UPF 50 means that 1/50th of the sun’s rays are reaching your skin. This translates to 98% of rays being blocked, and 2% penetrating through the fabric.
As you can clearly see, the higher the rating, the greater the sun protection. With this in mind, clothing must have a UPF rating of at least 30 in order to receive the Seal of Recommendation from The Skin Cancer Foundation.
While UPF below 30 does make some impact, UPF30-49 is considered good protection while 50+ is excellent.
Who Needs UPF Clothing?
So who should be wearing this protective clothing? In essence, anyone who spends a considerable amount of time in the direct heat of the sun should consider layering up with UPF protection.
Of course, the protective wear is especially beneficial for anyone with sun-sensitive skin, children, anyone in high-exposure areas, or those who take mediation that can increase their sensitivity.
If your children are soaking up extra rays during the summer holidays, consider investing in UPF clothing for kids to keep their skin healthy and well.
What to Look For in UPF Clothing
The best way to ensure you have quality UPF clothing is to check the label for the seal of recommendation. Of course, even if the seal is not present, the clothing may still provide some level of protection.
For the best protection look for fabrics that are specific colors, fabrics, and fits.
Dark and Bright colors are the best choice for extra protection. The lighter a color is, the more chance the sun has of penetrating through the fabric.
When in doubt, hold the fabric up to the light. If lots of light passes through, the sun’s rays are likely to do the same.
The type and composition of fabric will play a large part in its protective rating. The denser the fabric, the fewer rays will be let through.
As a general rule, fabrics like polyester and high-tech fibers are better than natural fibers for protection. Material that is shinier will reflect the ultraviolet rays so shiny polyesters and satins are a great choice.
Choose loose protective clothing over tight fashions. If material is stretched tightly over the skin, the weave is opened up, leaving holes for the sun to penetrate through.
Your UPF clothing can only protect the skin it covers, so be sure to choose high coverage styles for the best results. Cover up your hands, chest, and any other area that is prone to burning.
Anywhere the clothing doesn’t cover will need a healthy layer of sunscreen for adequate protection.
Protect Your Skin with UPF
Now that you know how UPF clothing works and what to look for when shopping for clothing protection, you can enjoy the summer months with ease.
Want more tips and tricks for healthy skin this summer? Check out our other articles to discover all of the health and lifestyle advice you need.