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Inside Coolibar Sun Protection Clothing What's Hot

Style Expert Bridgette Raes on Summer Trends in UPF 50+

Since 2002, Style Expert Bridgette Raes has transformed the wardrobes and styles of hundreds of clients. She is the president of Bridgette Raes Style Group in New York and author of the book Style Rx: Dressing the Body You Have to Create the Body You Want. Her witty, down-to-earth and educational advice has made her a sought-after writer, spokesperson and style expert for many media outlets. Now, Bridgette brings her expertise to the Coolibar Blog to show us how to prepare our wardrobe for warmer weather in a trend setting way.

The warm weather is here!  It’s time to get out and enjoy the sun.  Getting enough sunshine is important for your health and wellbeing, but too much sun can be very dangerous.  With Skin Cancer Awareness month this May, I thought it was important to write a blog that showed you how you can safely enjoy the sun this summer….while still looking fabulous.     

I decided to take some of Coolibar’s more popular pieces, all that have UPF 50+ and 98% UV Protection to show you just how easy it can be this summer to look good and care for your skin at the same time.

For this first look, I took Coolibar’s ZnO Harbor Hoodie in a classic navy and white stripe and paired it with some trendy red cropped pants.  Colored pants are so popular for summer and the overall look, worn with a pair of metallic wedges and an easy tote offers a timeless nautical style that is perfect for summer, be it for boating, going to the beach, the park or attending a barbecue with friends.  

 

Bright colored tunics and color blocking are two big trends right now. To address both, I took Coolibar’s ZnO Bayside Tunic and paired it with white Bermuda shorts and a pair of bright green sandals.  For more protection, I added Coolibar’s very versatile Sun Hat.  This is a great look that can be worn for just about anything you may be doing out and about this summer from a day out sightseeing to a casual dinner out with your mate.

 

For the beach, Coolibar’s Print Ruche Swim Shirt in this trendy zebra print is so exciting.  Not only can the chlorine and salt-water resistant swim shirt be cinched up and worn in the water, but it can also be worn as a tunic-length cover-up.  For additional sun protection (and style) can throw on Coolibar’s Packable Wide Brim Hat and a pair of their fabulous sunglasses.  Yellow is  one of the “it” colors for summer.  I went with a trendier yellow for that extra punch.  Lastly, a black straw bag and you can take from the beach to the street with this two-for-one piece.

 

In the summer, most of us get outside to exercise.  Often when working out we don’t think about how the sun could be damaging our skin.   There is a way to look stylish and be sun protected while getting your heart rate up.  Coolibar’s Swim Bike Run Jacket that has stylish contrast piping gives you a high performance jacket that can also be worn in the water.  Paired with their swim active capris and one of their fabulous hats, I threw in some additional pink accessories to inspire you to get out and get moving…while protecting yourself. 

 

Lastly, a tank top and capri jeans.  Who doesn’t have this look in their wardrobe for summer?  It is important to point out that if you’re looking to protect yourself from the sun this summer it does not mean that you have to get rid of your entire wardrobe.  Coolibar offers great ways to add protection to your existing style.  Every woman owns at least one cardigan in her wardrobe.  It’s a great piece to grab when you get chilly.  I love Coolibar’s ZnO Sun Wrap, particularly in their olive fatigue, which works so well with the most popular color of the summer season, orange!!!!  Worn with a pair of sandals, and one of Coolibar’s protective sun hats, you’ll be styling and saving your skin at the same time.

Shop Coolibar UPF 50+ Trends

Listen to Bridgette Raes on her radio talk show “Where Are You Going In That?” as she talks about Melanoma Month, the Melanoma Research Foundation and Coolibar.

Listen to internet radio with BridgetteRaes on Blog Talk Radio

 

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Expert Rx Videos

Packing for a Day at the Beach (Video)

Hi, this is Dr. Davis for Coolibar Sun Protective Clothing.

I wanted to give you some pointes on getting ready for a day at the beach or pool.  You know you are going to be outside, you’ve got the kids in tow, and you’re wondering – What do I put in my beach bag?

Sunscreen

The basics to keep you Sun Safe the whole day include sunscreen, what you choose depends on your preference, but a nice high SPF sunscreen, such as Vanicream 60, or the kid’s love the Blue Lizard sunscreen which is a combination of chemical and physical, plus the bottle will also tell you when to put it on, it turns blue in ultraviolet light. 

Sunglasses and Sun Hat

The other thing – sunglasses.  Even for the kids, eye protection is important.  For the kids, Coolibar makes an excellent UV protective lens, but also this nice strap so that it stays on in the water.  And I do recommend leaving the sunglasses on in the water as well as the hat, which might be a surprise.  But Coolibar makes some chlorine and salt water resistant fabrics that the kids put on and just leave on all day.  They can be simply washed, but they are resistant to those chemicals that otherwise might harm fabrics.

Sun Protective Clothing

Last but not least, the sun protective clothing.  There are some absolutely adorable outfits for kids you put on and you don’t have to worry about re-applying the sunscreen except for those little parts that are showing, like the tops of their feet, tops of their hands. 

Hat
Sunscreen
Sun Protective Clothing
Sunglasses

…keep your family sun safe for the whole day. 

So teach your family to be SunAWARE and you’ll keep them safe!

Disclaimer: The information provided by Coolibar and its contributors is general skin care information and should not be a substitute for obtaining medical advice from your physician and is not intended to diagnose or treat any specific medical problem.

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Sun Protection Clothing Wear Sun Protection What's Hot

How to Add Sun Protection to Your Beach Wardrobe

cover ups

You’ve heard about the dangers of tanning, and worry about UV rays causing skin cancer and wrinkles.  You want to protect yourself, but you don’t want to look like a beekeeper at the beach.  Sound familiar?    

We at Coolibar have a few simple tips on incorporating sun protection into your beach wardrobe.  It’s easy and you get to keep your bikini!  By adding key beach accessories to your broad-spectrum sunscreen and sunglasses you’ll be ready for a worry-free day at the beach.   

Wide brimmed hats offer excellent sun protection

Add a Wide Brimmed Hat

Big hats are hot this season!  Not only do they look good, they provide excellent sun protection.  Wide brim hats, with 3” brims or greater shade your face, ears and neck and the enormous 8” brim beach hats even protect your chest and shoulders.  Not to mention they keep you cooler since you’re not exposed to as much direct sunlight. 

 

Cover-ups are a versatile sun protection accessorie.Add a UPF50+ Cover-Up

Sun protective cover-ups, tunics and sarongs are essential sun protection accessories and can block up to 98% UVA (aging) and UVB (burning) rays. In fact, CNN reported that sun-blocking styles are A Healthy New Fashion Trend. The beauty of the cover up is its versatility. Cover-ups offer shoulder, chest, back and arm UV protection depending on the design. You can wear it or take it off according to the amount of sun you’re exposed to.  

You’ll only need to apply and re-apply sunscreen to the exposed areas of your skin.  

These tools are your best defense against sun’s rays. So, grab your hat, sun tunic, broad-spectrum sunscreen and sunglasses for your next beach adventure.  

You’ll look great and your skin will thank you for it!

Shop Coolibar hats and cover-ups.

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Sun Protection Clothing

Vacation Without the Burn

Before Jennifer’s recent trip to Hawaii, she packed her sun hats, sun protective clothing, sunscreen and sunglasses in order to avoid bringing back a flamboyant red tone as a souvenir. So, did her pre-planning help her avoid a painful situation? 

For the first time in my life I returned from a sunny vacation without a single sunburn!  The idea that this fair skinned, red haired woman can spend a week in sunny Hawaii and not get burned is a new concept for me.  I’ve spent countless hours in the sun with my darker complected friends only to contend with the pain of sunburn in the places I missed with sunscreen or in some instances a full out sunburn from not re-applying sunscreen at all (having too much fun to stop and re-apply) .  Terms like lobster and tomato have been used to describe my skin’s reddish hue after a day on the beach…and I felt like a fool when I changed for dinner and my cute new sundress was overshadowed by my flaming skin!

I’m a proud 5 year Coolibar employee.  When I was interviewing with the company, I remember thinking, “I don’t get it, isn’t all clothing sun protective?”  I’ve since learned that not all clothing is equal in its ability to protect from the sun, plus it doesn’t matter if you’re not willing to wear it.  So now, thanks to Coolibar, I’ve got my arsenal of UPF 50+ hats, swimwear, clothing, sunglasses, and dermatologist recommended sunscreen.  I can spend endless hours in the sun, feeling glamorous, in my Coolibar stuff and I don’t have to worry about sunburn, skin cancer or wrinkles.  I say, bring on the sun, I’m ready for it!  I heart my Coolibar!

Jennifer

Coolibar Employee

Jennifer’s vacation items from Coolibar included: Shapeable Poolside Sun Hat (pictured above), Short Sleeve Swim Shirt and Swim Skirt with Shorts (pictured on boat), Avalon Bucket Hat (pictured in car and boat), and Cotz SPF 58 sunscreen (not pictured).

Jen and Ren under an umbrella
Jen and Ren seeking shade
Jen Boating
Jen Boating in her Swim Shirt and Avalon Hat
Jen driving top down
Jen driving top down in her Avalon Hat
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Sun Protection Clothing What's Hot

What is Your Coolibar Beach Style?

Answer 10 simple questions to determine your ideal Coolibar beach look, because there is no need to give up your style to get reliable sun protection!

Is your style Sporty? Timeless? Glamorous? Smart?

The answer is below!

  

  

Scroll down to see your Coolibar beach style.

Swim & Surf Chic (Sporty Style)

If your first mission is to hit the water once the waves are in sight, then you’ll need an ensemble that works as hard as you work the water (and is stylish of course!) Coolibar suggests: Swim Jacket, Swim Tights, Chlorine Resistant Hat, UV Swim Goggles and All Terrain Aqua Sport SPF 30 Sunscreen

 

Shoreline Meanderer (Classic Timeless Style)

If your plan includes meandering through shops or dining seaside, you’ll probably want something with a little more coverage and style. Coolibar suggests: Sun Sarong, ZnO Sun Wrap, Tropicana Sun Hat, Mixed Pearl Necklace, Mykonos Sunglasses and Colorscience SPF 30 Powder Makeup

Lounging Lady (Glamorous Style)

If your ideal day at the beach or poolside is sitting under a parasol, reading a book and only moving to grab and sip of your pink lemonade every so often, then you’ll want sun wear to make your day as comfortable and relaxed as possible while still keeping your sense of style in mind!  Coolibar suggests: ZnO Sarasota Beach Cover Up, Ruche Swim Shirt, Shapeable Poolside Sun Hat, Cookie Sunglasses and Body Cotz SPF 35 Sunscreen

Active Chic (Smart Style)

You never know what a day at the beach will bring for you and your spontaneous nature. You go for simple, versatile and carefree looks you can throw on in an instant at the beach for some sand volleyball or reading your favorite magazine. You may even wade in the water from time to time. Coolibar suggests: Beach Shirt, ZnO Beach Pants, Marina Sun Hat, Patrol Sunglasses, Stone and Leather Cuff and Soleo Organics SPF 30 Sunscreen

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Inside Coolibar Sun Protection Clothing SunAWARE Wear Sun Protection

Your Questions on Sun Protective Clothing Answered

Today, Coolibar President John Barrow and Executive VP of Merchandising Michael Hubsmith answered Facebook fans’ questions about sun protective clothing.

Q. What makes your garments UV Protective?

A. Our collection of SUNTECT fabrics include the best active ingredients found in sunscreens including Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide.

Q. Since you add Zinc Oxide and Titanium Dioxide into the clothes, can it wash out?

A. We actually test all of our materials to make sure the UV protection is permanent. Part of our testing procedure is to wash and dry a fabric 40 times and then follow up with a UV Transmittance test.

Q. What is the difference between UPF and SPF?

A. UPF is for fabrics and means Ultraviolet Protection Factor. SPF is for sunscreens and stands for Sun Protection Factor. One important difference is that UPF tests both UVA and UVB protection levels while SPF only tests UVB.

Q. How much UV protection does normal clothing provide?

A. There is quite a range. Studies in Australia and Germany, that we have replicated here in the US, show that a summer t-shirt may be made of fabric that only provides a UPF of 5 to 10. Another issue is that regular summer clothing is typically designed to show skin rather than cover it, so a lot of the exposure from normal clothing relates to how much skin it covers.

Q. Before a UPF rating is assigned to a garment, how is it tested?

A. It is normally tested on a machine called a spectrophotometer. It has a UV source inside it and sends the UV through the fabric sample. It measures how much UV is transmitted through the fabric. In addition to this test, at Coolibar we test fabrics when new, but more importantly, we also age fabrics by washing them 40 times and exposing them to 100 hours of sunlight, then we do the UPF test again. We want to see fabrics provide UPF 50+ at the end of their life cycle. At Coolibar we guarantee that every garment we sell is as UV Protective on the first day it is worn to the very last day.

Q. How many times can the garments be washed before losing the protective ingredients?

A. Most clothes gradually lose their UV protection over time as they are worn, washed, stretched, and so on. When we are testing fabrics, we want to make sure they are providing UPF 50+ after 40 washings (which we consider to be a typical life cycle). So they will start even more protective than UPF 50+ and still be UPF 50+ a few years later.

Q. Is sun protective clothing superior to sunscreen? How would the use of each by itself compare?

A. We think you need to use a combination of clothing and sunscreen. Clothing provides more reliable protection and is easier to use, but sunscreen is necessary for areas like your face, hands, feet, and so on that aren’t covered by clothes.

Q. In your opinion, what are the top 3 items of sun protective clothing that EVERYONE should own?

A. In my traveling wardrobe, I have a packable bucket hat, a long-sleeve polo, and some sunglasses. So those are the 3 that I take literally everywhere with me.

Q. Do you need to wear sunscreen underneath the Coolibar clothing?

A. No, you will be well protected by the clothes themselves. You still need sunscreen for other areas, like your face, that are not covered by our clothes.

Q. Also, is it only good for a certain time? Like how you have to reapply sunscreen every 2 hours?

A. You can wear our clothes all day in the sun and the protection does not diminish. With sunscreen you do need to reapply every 2 hours.

Q. As I student, I like to dress with the trends, stay fashionable, etc. Is your company looking at broadening the styles available of UPF clothing to reach the demographic that is both concerned about protecting their skin while staying current?

A. Yes we are looking to expand our fashion portfolio as we grow.

Q. What color keeps you the coolest in the sun?

A. In general, most people feel that lighter colors make them feel cooler. However, there is probably a lot more difference between fabrics (weight, weave, wicking, etc) than between colors. We generally try to use very light-weight fabrics that also have special properties to help you feel comfortable in hot weather, e.g. wicking moisture off your skin.

Q. I have lupus but live in the deep south where it is full on sun for 10 months out of the year. I also have 2 young children that are complete water babies. I need something that allows me to be out by the pool or at the beach that will protect me and keep me cool. It is very hot and humid here, and of course even hotter by the pool. I can’t just be an invert with my boys.

A. We design our garments with the idea that you will be in the hot sun when you wear them, so breathability is very important for comfort. We offer several items like our ZnO Beach Pants and Largo ZnO Cover-up that can give you a head to toe coordinated look with full sun protective coverage.

Q. Can I wear non-swimwear products (like the featherweight cover up) in the water and still have 50 UPF protection? Will wearing non swimwear items in the water damage the item?

A. In general, you could wear them in the water without damaging them. However, UV does transmit through water better than through air so when garments get wet they let more UV through than when they are dry. We are considering this when we make items designed to go in the water. Finally, in pools, the chlorine can damage clothes if you were to wear them consistently over time. So I would not recommend wearing non-swimwear in heavily chlorinated water over an extended time.

Q. What is the best way to care for the clothing?

A. Follow the care instructions sewn inside each garment.

Q. Can they go in the dryer?

A. Yes. I put all my Coolibar clothes in the dryer.

Q. I’m thinking about buying a long sleeve swim shirt, but wouldn’t long sleeves make me hot and uncomfortable in the summer?

A. Many of our customers are surprised how cool they are wearing our long-sleeved garments. It’s because they are very light-weight fabrics and are designed to keep you cool.

If you have additional questions regarding Coolibar Sun Protective Clothing, let us know by posting a question on Facebook or writing a comment below. To purchase Coolibar Sun Protective Clothing, visit www.coolibar.com.

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Inside Coolibar

Employee Escapades – Rose in Puerto Rico

Proud employee Rose began working for Coolibar this past July. She recently ventured to Puerto Rico in order to escape Minnesota’s below zero temperatures and once there, finally got an opportunity to test out our gear for real.

This January, my boyfriend Aaron and I took a trip to Puerto Rico to celebrate my birthday and our 5 year anniversary. We rented a car in San Juan and drove to a surfing town called Rincon on the west side of the island where we spent 2 days. We spent a lot of time in the water because the waves in Rincon were amazing! We also drove around to neighboring cities and did a little exploring. We then drove to the opposite side of the island and spent a few days in a gated community called Palmas Del Mar. Our favorite activities were to just lie on the beach and relax or go for long walks. We even went hiking a little in El Yunque rainforest. Our Coolibar clothes made it so easy to stay safe in the sun and fully enjoy our trip.

I used the Fitness Jacket and Aaron used the Short Sleeve Swim Shirt and the All Terrain Winter Travel Kit. We really liked the swim shirt and the Winter Sport sunscreen…even though we weren’t doing any winter sports.  I got the kit because it had sunscreen, aloe and lip balm.

It got up to about 85 degrees usually. The swim shirt definitely helped to keep Aaron cool. The days I wore my fitness jacket, it helped to keep me cool, and then when the sun went down, it helped to keep me warm.

We wore our Coolibar clothes while swimming, walking on the beach, hiking, and riding in the car. The swim shirt was great for both of us! One day we went for a long walk down the beach, and Aaron was wearing his swim shirt. On the way back down the beach to the hotel, I was getting really hot and could tell that my sunscreen was wearing off, but it was far away so I couldn’t reapply. Aaron let me where his shirt for 10 minutes, and I almost immediately cooled down and my skin was protected from sunburn.

I was really impressed with both garments. Aaron used his shirt every day of the trip for all different kinds of activities and he admitted that the shirt did a great job of protecting his skin and keeping him cool.

The clothing definitely enhanced our trip. When applying sunscreen to Aaron’s arms and legs the first day of the trip, we missed a spot on his hand and on his lower left ankle. That night, Aaron complained about a burn on his hand and ankle and we were both shocked at the severity of the burn. If we hadn’t been diligent about him wearing his swim shirt and using the sunscreen on areas that were left exposed he would have probably had severe burns on his whole body, and we would have spent the second, and maybe even the third day of our short trip holed up in our tiny hotel room, waiting for Aaron’s burn to heal enough to go back out into the sun.

When I returned, people commented that I barely had a tan. I had a nice, healthy glow, but I definitely didn’t look like I got too much sun!

Rose

Coolibar employee

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Inside Coolibar New Products Sun Protection Clothing

Swimwear Preview 2011

Trips to the beach and jaunts to the pool are just around the corner. Or perhaps you still have that sunny winter getaway planned. Start thinking sunshine – and sun protection for the months ahead or your upcoming vacation. Take a sneak peek at some of our NEW UPF50+ swimwear and beach basics before your Coolibar catalog arrives in early February.

Don’t currently receive our catalogs?  Request a catalog today! 

For a Sun Safe Lifestyle

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Coverage is key. But regular summer clothing (even with long sleeves) is not enough to block dangerous UVA and UVB rays. If it were, it would be too heavy and hot. That’s why we developed the highest quality, lightweight UPF 50+ fabrics available: Coolibar SUNTECT®. Then we designed our apparel for stylish, easy wear, and superior comfort. So, relax and enjoy being outdoors the Coolibar way! It’s sun protection for life – your life – we guarantee it.

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Inside Coolibar New Products

Behind the Scenes – Spring 2011 Photo Shoot

Behind the scenes footage from Coolibar’s spring 2011 photo shoot in the FL Keys, including a sneak peak at our New Spring UPF 50+ Apparel. Look for our catalog in your mailbox starting February 7, 2011!

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Thank you to all of the amazing staff, crewmembers and models.

Kevin White – Photographer – KW Photography
Zack Swanson – Photo Assistant
Nelson Chavez – Photo Assistant
Steve Boxall – Digital Technician
Steve Siewert – Art Director
Lu Daitzchman – VP, Branding – Coolibar
Anna Dawson – Branding Coordinator – Coolibar
Amy Jo Henriksen – Merchandising Analyst – Coolibar
Mia Velez – Stylist
Kelley Quan – Hair & Make-up
Gaby Schuetz  – Producer – Select Services
Kristina Kitchen – Stylist Assistant

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What our customers say

Peace of Mind

A Coolibar customer letter.

8/17/2010

Dear Coolibar:

My new sun shirts for kids arrived today – delighted!

I want to express my highest regard and sincere appreciation for your children’s pool wear.  I bought your merchandise for the first time two summers ago, one for everybody in the family.  My husband thought I was crazy.  They were on sale but still not within our penny-pinching budget.  It is NOT very like me to charge up a hundred dollars of merchandise that cannot be returned!! Even he and I were dubious about our “his” and “her” swim shirts, but wanted to do right by our skin.

Since then, our three children have worn this sun-safe swim wear to countless beaches, to indoor and outdoor swimming pools, to rocky, muddy wooded streams, in the backyard in the blazing sun, to water day at Nursery School and, this the second summer, to our over-chlorinated outdoor pool almost daily.  We have put your product to the test two full summers in a row, and I would STILL put these shirts on them next summer if they would fit.  Aside from a little pilling on the front, there is little or no sign of wear, no fading or thinning or stretching of the material.  I compare their two-year-old shirts with this new merchandise, and you would not believe how little difference there is!  Pool friends and consumer mom’s marvel at our Coolibar stuff as their kids’ Lands End or LL Bean or Target swim shirts just disintegrate after the harsh pool chemicals.

You have given me such peach of mind that my three babies’ skin is protected.  Now, keep those clearance sales coming…I’ll be back in two summers!

Jennifer

Mechanicsville, VA

Coolibar Child Sun Protective Swimwear
Coolibar Child Sun Protective Swimwear
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