With the heat and sunshine of summertime upon us, it is time to give some serious thought to the type of clothing we wear when outside in the sunshine. We are all aware of the dangers of both UVA and UVB rays that can damage the skin, cause premature aging and increase the chances of skin cancer in later years. The effects of the sun on our skin are cumulative and the earlier in life we choose appropriate protection, the better.
Along with a good quality sun block which provides both UVA and UVB protection, we also need some good quality clothing to protect us as we enjoy the warm weather, whether strolling down some beautiful tropical beach or just catching some rays in our own backyard. Something as simple as walking out to the road to gather our mail from the mailbox can expose us to these damaging rays. We all need some sun exposure in order to maintain good levels of Vitamin D, but we also need to protect ourselves at all times from the damaging rays.
The Skin Cancer Foundation tells us that, “not all clothing is created equal. The tightness of the weave, the weight, type of fiber, color and amount of skin covered all affect the amount of protection they provide.”
Some clothing also carries a UPF rating. Information provided by The Skin Cancer Foundation says,
“What a UPF Rating Really Means”
“UPF stands for Ultraviolet Protection Factor and indicates how much of the sun’s UV radiation is absorbed. A fabric with a rating of 50 will allow only 1/50th of the sun’s UV rays to pass through. This means the fabric will reduce your skin’s UV radiation exposure significantly, because only 2 percent of the UV rays will get through.”
So we understand that the clothing we wear provides us with some very beneficial protection as well as providing us with a very “cool” look.
A company called “Coolibar” has come out with a wonderful line of women’s clothing that provides great protection while enjoying the summer sun.
Their “Everyday Blouse” has SPF protection and is “loaded with features designed to keep you safe outdoors. This sun protection shirt is made from an exclusive, ultra-light fabric that’s super soft and easy to wear.” This blouse, which ranges in sizes from petites to plus sizes, boasts such features as:
“Hidden mesh vents maximize airflow
Unique triple-layer collar unfolds for higher neck protection
Quality construction: single-needle tailoring, bar tacks, cross-stitched buttons
Lightweight, quick-drying lite SUNTECT™ fabric
Easy care: machine wash warm, tumble dry
Rated to block 98% UV”
Along with a protective, easy care shirt with sun protection, we will also need a good hat. Coolibar also offers a variety of hats designed especially for women to help them look good in the sun. Their stylish “Signature” hat is said to have “flair to spare”.
Features on this stylish hat include:
“Broad 4” brim shades your face and neck
Silky scarf tie allows you to adjust the fit
Travel-friendly crushable construction
Breathable 100% cotton canvas, scarf is 100% silk
Rated to block 98% UV”
Of course, you can also personalize your hat with a favorite flower or a special pin which will add more of your own flair to the stylish look. The cost of these hats run from $19.95 up.
Other women’s apparel includes both long and short sleeve shirts as well as hoodies. Prices vary according to style and size. The line also includes golf polo shirts, biking jackets, everyday and causal pants and slacks as well as a line of swim suits.
Coolibar also offers a selection of sun shawls, shade wraps and bandanas. All with UV protection.
Their website states:
“We’ve searched for and/or developed highly specialized sunscreen clothing fabrics to provide you with optimum sun protection, comfort and style. Our UV protective clothing fabrics include:
A tightly woven nylon microfiber with enhanced titanium dioxide – an ultraviolet diffuser – combined with CoolMax mesh for ventilation for all outdoor activities. We use this in popular SPF clothing styles such as our everyday blouse and our beach shirt.
A silky woven CoolMax® that keeps you cool and dry all day long – and feels luxurious. Available in our signature blouse, paradise blouse and island pants.
A polyester microfiber mesh knit that stretches, breathes and is extremely durable – for gloves and driving sleeves.
A soft, draping CoolMax®/Lycra knit blend for sun protection clothes such as dresses and skirts.
A customized cotton knit plaited to a CoolMax® interior for classic styling and UV protection. Offered in women’s sun protection clothing designs such as our long-sleeve polo shirt.
And for exceptionally durable, comfortable swimwear, a knitted polyester fabric without Lycra (which can degrade quickly) which protects, holds its shape and remains chlorine and saltwater resistant.”
Enjoy your time in the summer sun and feel totally protected from those damaging rays!