Expert Rx

Can Vitamin A Help Prevent Melanoma?

If you could take a pill to reduce your chances of getting melanoma would you? A new study appearing in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology provides evidence that taking a Vitamin A supplement may do just that.

While it’s still too early to tell whether or not this claim is true, the results are still noteworthy. Researchers analyzed almost 70,000 people, most around age 62, for a five-year period. They found participants taking Vitamin A supplements were approximately 40 percent less likely to develop melanoma than those who did not. The study also concluded that while supplements seemed to lower melanoma risk, eating food hearty in Vitamin A did not seem to affect a person’s likelihood of getting melanoma.

Vitamin A can be toxic in high doses, so it’s important to discuss your medications and vitamin supplements with your physician prior to changing your daily routine.

Steps you can currently take to prevent skin cancers include using sun protection and getting regular skin checks.

More on this study from WebMD

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Avoid UV & Seek Shade What's Hot

Parasols Are In and Great for Your Skin

Look around and you’ll start seeing more parasols (a.k.a. umbrellas) on sunny days. That’s right, no rain, just in pure wonderful sunshine. Why? They’re not only a great addition to your outfit, but they help block the sun’s ultraviolet rays that can cause premature aging and skin cancer. What’s not to love?!

Tip: If beautiful skin is your prerogative, look for the following when choosing your perfect parasol:

Large arch. A parasol with a large arch will block more UV from the side.

Dark interior. The darker the color, the better the umbrella will absorb reflective UV rays.

Reflective or dark exterior. A reflective exterior will deflect more UV and keep you cooler. A dark material will absorb UV.

UPF 30 or higher ratings. Some parasols will provide a UPF rating. An umbrella rated UPF 50+ will block 98% or higher of direct UVA and UVB rays. Remember UV rays bounce off pavement, water, sand and other reflective surfaces. Applying broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF 30 or higher, sun protective clothing and UV sunglasses will offer even greater sun protection.

Stay beautiful and on trend. Use sun protection and parasols.

View parasols on Pinterest!

Shop Coolibar UPF 50 Umbrellas and Shade.

Coolibar UPF 50+ Titanium Fashion Umbrella

 

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Inside Coolibar Sun Protection Clothing

The Coolibar Guarantee

Coolibar’s commitment to providing the highest quality sun protection possible is something we take very seriously. In the past few months, various news outlets posted articles questioning the effectiveness of sun protective clothing. In response, we decided to take a moment to clarify a few points about Coolibar sun protective clothing and our UPF 50+ guarantee. We invite and appreciate all feedback in the reply section below.

Does the UPF protection wear out or wash out? How can you be sure?

Because we are so meticulous about testing, we can absolutely guarantee UPF 50+ protection from the first day our product is worn until the last day.

Coolibar UV fabric testing results significantly exceed all published American and Australian standards and are submitted to the following tests:

  • UV transmittance tests performed according to the American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists Test Method 183 (AATCC 183).
  • Fabrics tested both before and after life cycle exposure to laundering, sunlight, and chlorinated water according to American Society for Testing and Materials D 6544 (ASTM D 6544); (life cycle – 40 washings, exposure to 100 fading units of simulated sunlight).
  • Garments labeled according to the guidelines specified in American Society of Testing and Materials D 6603 (ASTM D 6603).
  • Each color of production fabric tested according to the Australian/New Zealand standard AS/NZS4399 for UV transmittance developed by the Australian Radiation Protection Agency And Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA)

 

Do you need to add additional sun protection to the product such as Sun Guard or wear sunscreen under Coolibar sunwear?

At Coolibar, we carefully develop technical fabrics that are then thoroughly tested at independent labs to ensure each product meets or exceeds our UPF 50+ standard. This UPF 50+ rating is the highest rating available to clothing and blocks more than 98% of harmful UVA and UVB rays. There is no need to add UV detergent to the clothing. Sunscreen is only required on areas of skin not covered by Coolibar clothing.

 

Do all sun protective clothing brands offer the same sun protection?

Other companies may claim their products offer UV protective qualities, but very few make the investment required to ensure lasting performance. Our experience has shown that a single UV fabric test does not accurately reflect the consistency of UVA & UVB blocking levels across similar fabrics or colors. Each year, we test over 600 samples of our production fabrics, at each stage of manufacturing, so that we can match the UV transmittance level of each Coolibar garment to exact test results. We use independent labs to test every color and every dye lot for each fabric used so that we can confidently guarantee the consistent level of UV protection throughout the life of each garment. We know of no other apparel company that can make the same claim and back it up with independent lab test results.

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Inside Coolibar What's Hot

One UPF 50 Shirt, Five Looks

One of Coolibar’s favorite go to stylists Bridgette Raes recently created a blog post on styling the basic white t-shirt. We thought it was such a great idea, our Coolibar stylists translated it to UPF 50+ with our white ZnO Long Sleeve T-Shirt! View our outfit ideas below and you’ll realize UPF 50+ sunwear works with almost any outfit.

Take it to work…

Take it on the town…

Take it to dinner…

Take it to yoga…

Then wear it all weekend…

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Inside Coolibar

Healthy Life = Happy Life

Here at Coolibar, we talk a lot about healthy sunny living…and we’re good at it.  We apply sunscreen, put on hats and wear Coolibar UPF 50+ clothing when we’re outdoors because we know the important role sun protection plays in skin health.  We also know that skin health is just one aspect of a healthy balanced lifestyle. 

Lucky for us, our leadership team also recognizes we need more than just healthy skin.  So, to encourage overall health, Coolibar has teamed up with Lifetime Fitness, the Healthy Way of Life Company, to assist us in being healthy.  Collectively we have a variety of goals: stress relief, weight loss, strength training, etc. and all hope to transform into healthier, happier individuals.

During our first Coolibar team fitness demonstration we ran, we sweat, we laughed but mostly we had a lot of fun.  In fact, we forgot we were doing something good for ourselves (most of us anyway). We hope you do the same and not only make sun protection a part of your healthy lifestyle, but eat right, sleep and exercise too, as a healthy life is a happy life.

TRX Demo at Lifetime Fittness
Team Coolibar TRX Demo at Lifetime Fittness

 

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Coolibar Athletes

Athlete Molly Baross Travels Coolibar Style in Europe

What a gift to receive my Coolibar clothing as I was packing for my two month trip to Europe to compete in the World’s Master’s Synchronized Swimming competition in Riccione, Italy and attend my friend’s daughter’s wedding in France. Needless to say, I couldn’t take everything with me as I was going to be traipsing through the train stations in Italy and the metro system in France, so I had to travel light. 

While in Europe, I found I loved Coolibar hats! I wore the Santa Cruz Reversible Bucket Hat in navy and white as those are my team colors and I could accomplish being sun-protected as well as team identifiable!

I absolutely “lived” in the Sunblock Hoodie in bleached coral. The color went with so many of my other outfits that I wore it constantly. In the evening and afternoon I would tie it around my shoulders for additional warmth too. I love the fabric as it doesn’t wrinkle!

What activities did you partake in when wearing the shirt? 

I wore my Sunblock Hoodie all over France for a whole month.  It’s also a great cover up for the sun. When it isn’t needed it folds up very small and can be put in my purse or bag.  I absolutely love it and am looking at the other colors it is offered in!

What are your favorite features? 

I loved that it snaps easily if you want more sun protection during the day or warmth in the evening. No bulky buttons or zippers, just cute little snaps.

What are your overall thoughts on the fabric? 

The fabric is amazing!  It’s light yet protective, and also warm (versatile). It washes like a dream!

Did the fabric meet your expectations?

The fabric more than satisfied my expectations!

Did the fabric and shirt keep you cool? 

The fabric kept me warm in the early morning, cool in the afternoon sun, and comfortable in the evening!

Did the fabric stick to your skin? 

The fabric does not stick to the skin. It’s totally comfortable!

What do you want others to know about this shirt?

I would like your customers to know that this fabric is very comfortable, and breathable. I didn’t realize I had it on sometimes, it was that comfortable. Sometimes I needed to be a bit dressier than a tee-shirt and the Sunblock Hoodie looks smart and always fresh! I hope you can tell that I really loved it!

Thank you Coolibar,

Molly Baross

P.S. Wanted to let everyone know I won two gold medals at the Worlds Masters championship in Italy!

 

Molly displays her Gold Medal, Wearing Coolibar Santa Cruz Reversible Bucket Hat

 

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Wellness Warriors

Five Olympic Athletes Take the Gold for Sun Safety

Not all athletes, including Olympic athletes, are into tanning, even though a Google image search of the word “athlete” displays an overwhelming number of tanned muscle men and women. Being fit and looking great doesn’t mean you need tan skin. In fact, you’re likely to develop sun spots and wrinkles if you do tan. To dispel the tan athlete typecast, we went out in search of Olympic athletes spreading the word about using sun protection for a healthy sunny life. In our opinion, these five women get the Gold for their sun protection efforts.

Kerri Walsh (Photo credit Jasonschock, Wikipedia)

Kerri Walsh, Beach Volleyball (USA)

At age 34, Walsh has taken home two gold medals for beach volleyball. Being a native of California she also knows the importance of using sunscreen when playing on the beach. Quoted in Fitness Magazine online, she says, “My mom had skin cancer on her chin, so I know that sun protection is important.”

Christine Rampone in yellow (Photo credit Brittany Carlson, Wikipedia)

Christine Rampone, Soccer (USA)

When two-time Olympic Gold medalist Rampone, 37, is on the soccer field she may be focused on the game, but she always uses sun protection before heading out on the field. “I apply sunscreen about an hour before practice, and I get one with as high a SPF as I can find- at least 35, usually a 50,” she says on the Skin Cancer Foundation website. As captain of the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team she leads by example for her team as well as the youth she coaches in her spare time.

Natalie Coughlin (Photo credit JD Lasica, Flickr)

Natalie Couglin, Swimmer (USA)

As a swimmer and 11-time Olympic medalist, at age 29 Couglin is wise beyond her years to use sweat- and water-resistant sunscreen in the water and encourage others to do so. During her interview with Marie Claire, she says “I’ve been in the sun my whole life, and fortunately, I’ve been obsessed with wearing sunscreen since I was a kid.” Couglin uses the Vertra Face Stick with SPF 38 is her choice as her water-resistant sunscreen go-to.

Victoria Pendleton (Photo credit johnthescone, Wikipedia)

Victoria Pendleton, Track Cyclist (U.K.)

Pendleton, 31, is a nine-time world champion and was an Olympic gold medalist in individual sprint at the Beijing Olympics in 2008. She uses sunscreen on her face and body, and her complexion shows it! “My go-to sunscreen for my face is Elemis Liquid Layer SPF 30. For my body, I like to use a sunscreen from Soleil Organique,” she says in Marie Claire.

Gisela Dulko (Photo credit Pascalre, Wikipedia)

Gisela Dulko, Tennis (Argentina)

Dulko, 27, is a former women’s doubles world No. 1 and has won 17 doubles titles. Playing tennis outdoor for a living she’s exposed to the sun for extended periods of time. She keeps her skin naturally beautiful by wearing sunscreen. “I don’t wear any makeup when I play matches, only sunscreen—Avène SPF 30 for face and body,” says Dulko in Marie Claire.

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Coolibar Athletes

Peter Urban Reviews the Coolibar Sunblock Jacket

Coolibar Athlete Peter Urban plays tennis competively as often as he can. He’s done so for about 30 years now! Even though he’s had an encounter with skin cancer, he still pushes his outdoor game forward. Now he sports Coolibar’s UPF 50+ sunwear and wishes to share his thoughts with you. Read Peter’s review of the Coolibar Sunblock Jacket.

What are you overall thoughts on the shirt?

When Coolibar suggested that I try out the Sunblock Jacket, I was reluctant as I am used to hoodies and jackets being heavy, and not “breathing”. However, I was very surprised by the lightweight, breathable material.  I cannot believe that it is UPF 50! It is also quite compact in that I could pack it down to almost fit in the space between my palms cupped together. I also really like the shade of blue. I like being able to put the hood up to protect my head from the sun too.

What are your favorite features?

Lightweight, breathable fabric. Athletic tailoring that doesn’t leave a ton of extra fabric in the abdomen. Hoodie – breathable and light; I prefer wearing it to a hat because the hoodie is looser fitting and more comfortable than a hat.

What are your overall thoughts on the fabric?

Feather-light, soft and breathable. Nice top that doesn’t wrinkle.  Hoodie is tailored nicely so that it doesn’t have extra material that makes hoodies look sloppy.

Did the fabric meet your expectations?

It exceeded my expectations!

Did the fabric and shirt keep you cool?

Yes. Fabric breathes well and is lightweight.

Did the fabric stick to your skin?

No.

What do you want others to know about this shirt?

The hoodie is versatile. You can wear it during the day, and even though it has long sleeves, it does not make you hot because the material breathes. You can put the hood up and down as needed. As a bonus, the hoodie is good for sporting events because unlike a hat, it won’t obstruct the view of people behind you. The hoodie is great at night as well as a lightweight way to take the chill off, even if you don’t leverage the UPF 50 protection.  

Do you have any tips to stay comfortable and safe out in the sun?

I suggest UPF clothing. It allows you to play sports without having to worry about putting sunscreen on your torso, including your back, which is the most difficult to reach spot. In fact, the back is where most melanomas are found on men. A regular cotton t-shirt provides inadequate protection at UPF 5. My dermatologist recommended a minimum of UPF 50 in order to stay safe in the sun.

Get the Coolibar Sunblock Jacket.

Read other Coolibar Athlete product reviews.

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Parenting

Get Outside and Play

What are you going to do with your summer? A question all kids must answer once the school year is over. If watching television, playing video games or surfing the web are your child’s top choices, it may be time to introduce some outdoor activities into their summer routine.  Good habits start early and active children become active adults, conquering obesity and sedentary behavior. Your kids will thank you for it.

When children engage in less structured outdoor play, they typically sustain moderately energetic activity over longer periods of time – the type of activity that is particularly important for health and fitness.  In addition, there is a growing body of research on how spending time outdoors benefits children’s development beyond the obvious physical benefits.  Those benefits include kids that are more imaginative, creative and cooperative.

If the children in your life need a little encouragement to put away their video games, we’ve got some ideas to get your kids excited about playing outside.

  • Plan an Interesting Place to Visit  – The backyard may be the easiest option to get children playing outside, but by planning a little, you can find other interesting places to take your children. Walk to a neighborhood park or visit a nature center or the zoo.
  • Have Fun While Moving Around – One of the great things about playing outside is that most of the time, your kids are concentrating so hard on having fun, they don’t even realize how much effort and energy they’re using. Fly a kite at the park, skip stones at a pond or play a game such as red rover red rover, tag or hide and seek.
  • Investigate Nature – Playing outdoors is critical to a child’s development because all of his senses are engaged and he’s making decisions based on using those senses. Also, cultivating an interest in trees and other plants, animals and natural phenomena is a great way to motivate kids to get outdoors. Take a nature walk and share stories about things you remember about nature from your childhood, start a collection from your walks or plan a family hike.

Move around and demonstrate how much you enjoy being outside. This will go a long way in teaching your kids to embrace the outdoors too.  Life happens outside, get out there and enjoy it!

Outdoor play is beneficial beyond health and fitness.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Resources:

http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/getactive/children.html

http://www.childrenandnature.org/

http://www.oprah.com/oprahradio/Getting-Children-Outdoors

http://www.livestrong.com/article/141891-the-benefits-outdoor-play-children/

 

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Wellness Warriors

A Man Fascinated by the Desert and Extreme Heat

Ripley Davenport, a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, is a dedicated explorer and adventurer of desert regions. His curiosity and awe of the desert environment has led him to discover the wonders that the desert has to offer. By crossing the desert on foot Ripley has become very intimate with the landscape and the crucial preparation needed to survive.

Mr. Davenport is about to embark on a Death Valley Man Haul. Lucky for him, he has had on-foot experience crossing desolate and arid deserts. Recently in 2010 he man-hauled his way across the Manchurian Steppe and Gobi desert covering a little over 1000 miles and again in 2011 he walked another 1000 miles, leading an International team with 12 Bactrian camels, from West to East across a section of the Altai Mountains and Gobi desert.

His intent in Death Valley is to be completely self sufficient and entirely on foot throughout the 153 mile route from North to South through the Valley itself by manhauling a specially fabricated wheeled desert trailer, which will carry minimal water and provisions that weighs approximately 441 pounds across Death Valley, which consists of sand dunes, jagged mountains, salt-pans, washes and canyons. Read more about Ripley’s Death Valley Man Haul.

man haul desert trailer - photo courtesy of Emmanuel Berthier

Death Valley is the hottest and driest place in North America with the highest reliably reported temperature in the Western Hemisphere at 134 degrees F. The average daily temperature is 114.7 degrees F.

Extreme temperatures, dry conditions and sparse vegetation will push ones mental, physical and physiological limitations, therefore, strategic preparation is essential for a successful trek. Mr. Davenport says, “I travel very light and take minimal gear. There’s no point in taking anything that you are not going to use. If you have to question why you should take something, you shouldn’t take it at all.”

Ripley needs sun protection he can rely on while in Death Valley. His gear list includes the Coolibar sun gaiter, full finger gloves, ultra sport hat and face sun shield to keep him safe from UV. We will be checking in with Ripley throughout his man haul. Stay tuned for more on Ripley Davenport and his wild desert- loving adventures.

 See Coolibar’s UPF 50+ gear for Ultimate Sun Protection.

Ripley Davenport - photo courtesy of Emmanuel Berthier
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