As important as it is to indulge in a daily dose of Vitamin D, there can also be harmful effects when your skin is exposed to the sun for far too long.
The most common professions that require high exposure to the sun are athletes, construction workers, and farmers. Because of the demands of their careers, they need to take extra care of their skin to avoid developing skin diseases. People who enjoy participating in outdoor activities also need to take extra precautions.
Besides applying sunscreen regularly, you should also invest in sun protective clothing to ensure your skin is not directly exposed to the dangers of UV rays.
What is Sun Protective Clothing?
Sun protective clothing is unlike your everyday clothing. They have an Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) designed to provide an added layer of protection from the sun’s rays. Similar to SPF, UPF also comes in different types and ranges.
Your clothing UPF level determines the amount of UV radiation that can penetrate your clothing to reach your skin. The higher the UPF level, the more protected your skin is. A UPF 50 blocks around 98% of the UV rays, which significantly decreases the risk of developing skin disease caused by harmful sun rays.
How do they Work?
Depending on the colour, fabric, construction, and fit, the efficacy of sun protective clothing varies. When shopping for such attire, you need to consider the following:
- Colour: Blacks and whites absorb UV rays more effectively, and they prevent the penetration of the sun rays from reaching your skin. However, studies show that darker coloured clothing absorbs five times more than lighter alternatives.
- Fabric: A 100% polyester fabric contains high levels of UPF. It also contains an element called benzene that helps absorb harmful UV rays.
- Construction: The clothing should be tightly woven with no apparent holes. Wool, canvas, denim, or synthetic fibres provide you with more protection than sheer and thin fabrics. To check for the garment’s protective properties, hold your clothes to the sun and check if light passes through. If it does, then it is not good sun protective clothing.
- Fit: The material should be elastic enough to adapt to your body’s shape. It shouldn’t be too loose or too tight as it can affect the level of protection your clothing offers. Additionally, you should opt for a full coverage fit. The less skin you have exposed to the sun, the better. Some brands offer sun sleeves and shoulder wraps, so if it gets too warm for a full-body option, you can add it to your existing clothing. But if you want full and total coverage, a full-body option is also available.
Benefits of Buying Sun Protective Clothing
Now that you know what sun protective clothing is and how it works, you can better understand the importance of having one in your closet. Aside from offering protection from the sun, here are more benefits to convince you why you should invest in quality sun protection.
- Helps keep you cool: Clothing with UPF 50+ offers a functional design that minimises exposure to the sun and helps cool your body. Made with lightweight, breathable material, this type of clothing allows cold air to penetrate easily to keep you comfortable during the hot summer days.
- Prevents skin ageing: Exposure to the sun causes your skin to age faster. With sun protective gear, you limit the amount of sun that hits your skin.
- Saves money: Developing skin cancer or any other skin disease requires medical treatment, which costs a lot of money. Save on medical costs when you take proper preventive measures to keep your skin healthy.
When you know how to properly take care of your skin, you reap long-term benefits. Take advantage of sun protective gear to keep your skin healthy. Don’t wait until you see the effects of harmful UV rays before you start investing. Buy a pair of protective gear as soon as possible, and remember to bring them every time you go outdoors.