It’s a pretty simple formula that many people are familiar with: more UV rays from the sun = a higher risk of skin cancer. Beyond staying inside all day long or slathering on sunscreen, what’s a Californian to do to protect their skin? Check out our top tips to ensure you have a safe summer outdoors:
Put on some pants
While adding some layers in the heat of the summer might not be the most appealing option, a light covering can guard you from the sun’s rays. But not all clothing offers the same protection. According to the American Cancer Society, dark colors generally provide more sun blockage than light colors. A tighter weave helps — if you can see the sun through the weave, the rays can see their way through as well. And keep your eye out for clothing made from new fabrics that shield off UV rays; a label will clarify the UV protection level.
Slide on some shades
Sunglasses don’t just make it more comfortable to be outdoors — with the right pair, sunglasses can block eye-damaging UV rays and shield the delicate skin around your peepers. Be sure to check the label and ensure your shades block 99% to 100% of UVA and UVB rays. No label? Assume the sunglasses provide no protection.
Hide under a hat
Sunscreen isn’t always a perfect solution — for example, a balding spot or sweaty forehead can present problems when trying to coat your skin. Donning a topper with a 2- to 3-inch brim provides great protection for your head, face, and ears. Spending time at the beach or pool? Consider grabbing a hat with a dark underside to block some of the rays reflected off the water. If you also want to shade your neck, a cap that drapes fabric down the side and back is a good pick. The same rules apply to hats as to fabrics — the tighter the weave, the better the UV blockage.