When you need advanced, all over UPF 50+ skin coverage, look for styles flagged with the Coolibar shield. This level of skin coverage is recommended by dermatologists to protect those with sun sensitivities, medical conditions, severe health considerations and young children with tender, delicate skin. Remember that anywhere that is covered by Coolibar fabric you’ll block 98% of UVA and UVB rays because all our clothing and hats are rated UPF 50+, giving you the highest sun protection rating possible, that is guaranteed for the life of the garment. Complete outfitting with Ultimate Protection styles covers up to 90% of skin, extending full-length skin coverage for arms, hands, faces, necks and legs. We wanted to make it easy for you to find the items that have the most coverage to keep your skin protected from UVA and UVB rays. All our clothing is UPF 50+ but the items with the Coolibar Shield will help you find the items that cover the most skin possible.
Ultimate skin coverage starts at the top with a hat that’s a 3” brim (minimum) to shade neck and ears. One of the most common places for skin cancer is on the human scalp. It’s also one of the least diagnosed. Under hair, there can be spots or tumors that can be cancerous. Start your family young. The inconvenience of wearing a hat is small in comparison to the benefits of protecting one’s self. This includes wearing a cap when swimming. We recommend covering your head and ears because according to the Science Daily, the most lethal melanomas are found on the scalp and the neck and people who have melanomas in those places “die at nearly twice the rate of people with melanoma elsewhere on the body, including the face or ears.”
After scalp and ear coverage, a long sleeve shirt that covers shoulders and extends over forearms and hand tops (when possible) provides strong upper chest and arm coverage. Look for thumbholes, longer cuffed sleeves, zippers that go to the top of the shirt collar, mock turtleneck or mandarin style collars where possible. You’ll want to keep your chest and arms covered to get maximum UPF 50+ sun protection. According to the Mayo Clinic, Forearms are one of the most common places for basal and squamous cell skin cancer. Additionally, these cancers frequently appear the head, neck, and hands.
The back of the neck is one of the most neglected skin areas. Hats with drapes provide shade and gaiters are a core part of ultimate coverage. Gaiters not only cover necks completely; they provide the added benefit of keeping you cooler on higher temperature days. Gaiters come in various sizes to accommodate men and women and have extra fabric to extend upward to cover the lower face, chin, and jawlines. According to WebMD, Shortcuts ponytails and casual messy bun hairstyles expose delicate neck skin to UV rays. Men with shorter hair experience cancer on the back of their necks and ears due to years of sun exposure.
Backs of the legs, behind the knees and calves, are often overlooked for coverage. Out of sight, out of mind. Sunscreens are not easily applied, applied too thinly or infrequently reapplied. Thus, full-length UPF 50+ pants are the only solution to ongoing coverage. Look for pants that come to your ankles, then wear socks or boots to cover skin on tops of feet. The calf and ankle are often overlooked in sunscreen application, wearing pants that cover the sensitive skin are an easy way to keep yourself protected.
“Skin cancer frequently appears on the lower legs and ankles of women, and ankles are difficult to treat surgically without intrusive post-op activity limitations or surgical disfigurement. The skin here is thin, especially with advanced photodamage, and it does not stretch for surgical closure.”
-Advanced Skin Care Dermatology, Dr. Cynthia Bailey
Hands are vulnerable to cumulative damage, sun sensitivities and cancer spots. UVA rays can penetrate car windows and contribute to basal and squamous cell skin cancers. Complete Ultimate Skin Coverage with gloves that protect hands from the continued onslaught of UVA/UVB rays. Adding a pair of sun safe gloves can help you reduce the amount of UVA and UVB rays that hit the sensitive skin on the tops of your hands and are easy to put on. There are even styles with a touch screen pad to be able to use all your favorite devices with ease.
“I often see the same amount of sun damage on the back of the hands that I see on the face. These are high-risk places for precancerous lesions and skin thinning and they need sun protection.” – Dr. Cynthia Bailey
We hope this helps you choose the products that are best for you and keep you sun safe. When you need advanced, all over UPF 50+ skin coverage, look for styles flagged with the Coolibar shield.