Best Ways to Protect Yourself From the Sun
- Enjoying the great outdoors is a favorite pastime for millions of people all around the world. Even more depend on the outdoors for their careers. All of this leads to millions of hours spent in direct sunlight.
- While moderate amounts of sunshine are important to our health, we all know that too much sun, too often, can be harmful. Too much Ultraviolet (UV) exposure can have damaging effects, and can even lead to an increased chance of being diagnosed with skin cancer.
- While wearing sunscreen is the most common method to provide sun protection while outdoors, it comes with many disadvantages.
- Doctors and dermatologists both agree that the best form of UV protection is by covering up through sun protective clothing such as hats, sunglasses, Arm Shields, and Face Shields.
Keep reading to learn more about the shortfalls of sunblock and the great UV-protecting products we provide.
The Importance Of Sun Protection
Skin cancer is the #1 most common form of cancer. Every year, over 1 million people are diagnosed with skin cancer in the United States, and the incidence of skin cancer continues to rise. According to a recent Mayo Clinic study, there has been an 800% increase in young women and a 400% increase in young men of melanoma since 1970.
Skin cancer is primarily caused by too much exposure to the sun and its harmful Ultraviolet (UV) rays.
There are a variety of sun protection options available, like sunblock, to help minimize the harmful effects caused by UV rays. But not all options are created equal, and some options, like sunblock, may do you more harm than good.
SA Company is determined to raise awareness about skin cancer and how it is easily preventable.
About UV Exposure and Where Does It Come From?
Ultraviolet rays, or UV for short, are a type of non-visible electromagnetic radiation located on the electromagnetic spectrum.
When your skin receives too much UV rays, you become what is known as “overexposed”. You can become overexposed in as little as 10 minutes of being outdoors. You can even receive too much UV on cloudy or overcast days.
We also receive UV exposure from man-made sources such as certain types of lighting, medical equipment, and also industrial equipment – but compared to the sun, these are relatively minor and are not a source of significant exposure.
We receive almost all UV from the sun itself.
While doctors and dermatologists both agree that a little bit of the sunshine each day is needed to provide essential Vitamin D, the average person needs no more than 10 to 15 minutes of direct sunshine – after this you need to take steps to reduce your UV exposure to limit the harsh effects of overexposure to reduce your risk of skin cancer.
Who Should Take Extra Care to Protect Themselves?
Those who spend lots of time outdoors are the most at risk of overexposure, but anyone that spends any amount of time outdoors should take steps to protect themselves.
The list of people at the most risk include:
- People who spend a fair amount of time doing any outdoor hobby, sport, or activity
- People who have an outdoor occupation: construction workers, landscapers, farm workers, lifeguards, police officers, firefighters, commercial fishermen, etc.
- People with fair skin, especially redheads, and people who freckle easily
- People who have previously had skin cancer, or have a known family history of skin cancer
- Seniors who spent a lot of time outdoors in their younger years
While this list focuses on those most at risk, it is not an exhaustive list; the reality is that anyone who spends any amount of time outdoors is at risk of the harmful effects of too much UV.
The best way to prevent skin cancer is by reducing the amount of UV you are exposed to, and the best way to do that is to create a physical barrier between the sun and your skin.
Why Sunscreens Aren’t Usually Your Best Option
We were falsely raised as children to believe that the best way to protect ourselves from the harmful effects of the sun was through sunblock. We all have memories from our childhood of being slathered in sunblock, only to lay in bed that night writhing in pain from our sunburnt bodies.
Sunblock is the old and outdated way of thinking.
While sunblock does create a barrier on our skin, it doesn’t block 100% of UV, and it even then, it only does so temporarily.
Sunblock also comes with plenty of its own negative effects:
- Expensive – sunscreen can be an expensive product and can be spilled, wasted, or misplaced, meaning you will always need to buy more.
- Impractical – it can be difficult to completely cover your skin, and eventually will wear off from sweat or water.
- Messy – sunscreen can be difficult to apply, is often spilled everywhere, can potentially stain clothes, and can even cause “pinking” where it stains boat cushions pink, resulting in costly repairs.
- Expires – sunscreen has an expiration date, and eventually loses effectiveness the longer it goes past the expiration date, rendering the product completely useless.
- Unhealthy – often leaves your skin oily and greasy, and may even clog your pores and cause breakouts on those with sensitive skin. Some people may even break out in rashes or allergic reactions, and the long term effects of continuous-use of sunblock is still largely unknown.
- Environment – sunscreen bottles are commonly made with plastic, which only adds to pollution, and common chemical sunscreen ingredients are easily washed into the water that have been proven to kill coral reefs and other marine life.
Outdoor Clothing and Sun Protective Apparel
According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), the best line of defense against harmful UV radiation is to wear protective clothing.
Clothing protects us by acting as a physical barrier between the sun’s radiation and our skin. The more skin you cover, the better. Clothing is the best way to ensure 100% adequate protection for your body, something that sunblock has always struggled to do. Clothing also completely avoids the possible issues with toxins, allergies, rashes, and skin sensitivities that some sunscreens may have.
However, most people are not aware of all the clothing options available today.
For example, most people may not think there’s a way to protect your face or neck other than the shade from a wide brimmed hat… But there is. Our solution: Face Shields.
Face Shields, a product of SA Company, are commonly worn on one’s head and provide excellent sun protection. They are made of microfiber and are extremely lightweight and breathable. They wick away moisture and dry quickly, reducing skin temperature and maintaining hydration, even in very hot climates. Face Shields are easy to use, protective, and stylish, with more than 200 designs available. In addition to providing excellent sun protection, they can also protect against the dust, bugs, and the cold.
How do I wear a Face Shield?
Face Shields are most commonly worn over the head and neck area and are pulled up to the nose. While this is the common way, Face Shields can be worn in a variety of styles.
In fact, there are more than a dozen different ways to wear Face Shields:
What will be your favorite way to wear a Face Shield?
Final Thoughts on Protecting Yourself
Wearing sun protective clothing is most likely your best solution for protecting yourself.
The right clothing is a great alternative without many of the shortcomings and dangers of sunscreens. Most things you can wear, like Face Shields, can be put on or taken off in just a few seconds, leave no greasy residue, won’t expire, won’t make you break out in a rash, won’t seep harmful toxins into your body, and won’t harm our delicate coral reefs.
Using this “cover up” approach will keep both your dermatologist and your doctor happy.
Protect yourself from the sun. Your future self will thank you.