Sun Protection

Posted: May 31, 2012 in Uncategorized

Sun Protection

An article in the New York Times on 5/29/12 highlights the limitations for sun protection from clothing. Regular clothing must be dark or tightly woven to provide much protection from the sun, so they are not the most comfortable in the summer. Garments with specific sun protection have been available for some time from outlets like REI and manufacturers like Solumbra. They work by adding chemicals to the fabric so lighter materials can be effective for sun protection. Today more manufacturers are producing these products. A rating system for sun protection provided by these garments called ultraviolet protection factor [UPF] rates them on a scale of 1 to 50 [with the higher number indicating better protection]. There are also laundry treatments that add chemicals which provide sun protection to clothing, such as Sun Guard.

While these special garments can help provide protection, they only work if you wear them. And they only help for those areas that they actually cover. Traditional methods to reduce sun exposure such as sun screens, wearing a hat, and doing outdoor activity early or late in the day should not be forgotten and may be more cost effective.

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