You’d be hard-pressed to find a foil tanning reflector at the local pool these days. Watching someone lather up in baby oil would be considered a crime. We know more now about the harmful effects of the sun’s rays then we did 50 years ago. But how often do we think about it before we head out on our next training run?
According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, “Clothing is the single most effective form of sun protection.” While sunscreen also helps, many people don’t apply enough, or they forget to reapply regularly. And if you’re engaging in high- intensity activities, sunscreen can easily sweat off. Clothing offers a “goof-proof” way to protect your skin. Plus, while some sunscreens block only one type of UV rays (UVB), UV protective clothing provides a full spectrum of protection against both UVA and UVC radiation.
In honor of Skin Cancer Awareness Month, we’ve compiled the top 5 ways to protect yourself from the elements so you can stay out and play longer.
Simple, innovative and effective, this multifunctional layer can be worn 12 different ways – from headband to cap, neck gaiter to hair tie – then adds built-in sun protection that blocks up to 95 percent of harmful rays*.
2. Sun Protectant Apparel
The outdoor industry has your back, and your front too with the rise of the sun protectant category. Brands abound with long-sleeved, sun repellant apparel that offers UPF 50 protective material*. They’ve got you covered when you’re exposed.
This exceptionally lightweight cap weighs only one ounce. But don’t let the size fool you. It boasts UPF 50 protective material* and wicks moisture to keep sweat out of your way.
Styled for runners, these UV Arm Sleeves have reflective elements strategically placed for better visibility in low-light conditions. Put them on in the morning to fight the chill and comfortably leave them on all day for UPF 40+ sun protection*.
5. Dawn or Dusk & Have No Fuss
Plan your runs for the early morning or later in the evening to avoid the sun altogether. To boot, you can also avoid overheating and sunstroke if your schedule is flexible!
* Some clothing carries an Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) rating, which is similar to the SPF ratings on sunscreen. Clothing marked UPF 50 allows 2 percent (1/50) of UV radiation to pass through. In other words, it blocks 98 percent of the sun’s harmful radiation. In general, fabrics must score at least a 15, blocking 93.3 percent of UV radiation, to offer good protection.