About 8 years ago, I went to the beach around 2:00 PM with a very good friend I had not seen in several years. Needless to say, we had a LOT to catch up on. I wore a comfortable two-piece bathing suit and brought my pop-up tent, because the Florida beach at 2:00 PM in the middle of May is just not a pleasant place to be without some shade. Comfortable under our shady tent and with sunscreen applied upon our arrival, we chatted for hours. The shade however, had been quite deceiving. Back then, I was not a board-certified dermatology nurse practitioner yet, so I was not fully aware of the nuances of sun protection, like the fact that UV rays can reach our skin from all directions.
Another fun fact I was not aware of at the time was that all shade is not created equally. Different types of canopies vary in their protectiveness owing to differences in materials, size, and variations in design. Your standard pop-up beach canopy may state that it is 99% UV protective, but unlike UV-protective clothing, shade like a beach tent or umbrella does not block all of the angles that damaging UV rays can reach the skin.
A common reason many people (including myself 8 years ago) forgo sun-protective clothing is because they forget about the presence of UV rays that reflect off of the sand and water. According to the World Health Organization, dry beach sand reflects about 15% of UV rays, and sea foam reflects about 25%. Still other UV rays are diffused by atmospheric particles. I bet you were not thinking about atmospheric particles when you were packing for your beach day.
People often assume that their skin is fully protected as long as they are either under the shade of an umbrella or slathered with sunscreen. Studies have been done that specifically evaluate the UV protectiveness of a beach umbrella and directly compare it with protection provided by sunscreen with a high sun protection factor (SPF).
In one of these studies, participants were randomly assigned to 2 groups: 1 group of 41 participants was sent to the beach with only a beach umbrella, and the other group of 40 participants using only sunscreen with a SPF of 100. All participants remained at the sunny beach for 3½ hours at midday.
Clinical sunburn evaluation of each individual for all exposed body sites was conducted 22 to 24 hours after sun exposure. The results were impactful. There was a total of 142 sunburn incidences in the umbrella group and 17 in the sunscreen group. These results are a clear indication of the importance of having a multifaceted approach to sun protection and not getting too comfortable just because you have shade at the beach or slathered yourself in high-SPF sunscreen.
I don’t feel too guilty though about having put too much faith in my shady easy-up canopy, sunscreen and still ending up with a sunburn. While 25% of Americans frequently stay in the shade, only 16% regularly wear a hat, and 6% report frequently wearing long sleeves. Although I was not aware of it at the time, the literature has shown that barrier methods like clothing and shade are more effective than sunscreen alone in reducing exposure to solar UV radiation.
This, ladies and gentlemen, is why even if you are under a pop-up tent, beach umbrella or sun shade covered in sunscreen, you should still protect yourself with a clothing barrier. Put on your Coolibar UPF 50+ sun-protective clothing, apply your sunscreen on any exposed areas, and don’t forget to re-apply every 2 hours (or sooner if you are sweating or after you go for a dip).
My story ends with me learning a valuable lesson: Protecting your skin from all angles at the beach is a must, regardless of whether or not you are sitting in the shade. Even if sunscreen annoys you or makes you feel sticky, protect yourself with UPF 50+ clothing. The best barrier to the sun is physical barrier on your skin.
Linos, E., Keiser, E., Fu, T., Colditz, G., Chen, S., & Tang, J. Y. (2011). Hat, shade, long sleeves, or sunscreen? Rethinking US sun protection messages based on their relative effectiveness. Cancer causes & control : CCC, 22(7), 1067–1071. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10552-011-9780-1
Ou-Yang, Jiang, L. I., Meyer, K., Wang, S. Q., Farberg, A. S., & Rigel, D. S. (2017). Sun Protection By Beach Umbrella Vs Sunscreen With A High Sun Protection Factor: A Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Dermatology., 153(3), 304–308. Https://Doi.Org/10.1001/Jamadermatol.2016.4922
I recently tried Coolibar’s UPF 50+ sun protective clothing, which is guaranteed to block 98% of UVA/UVB rays. Self-care to me means massages and pedicures, but in reality it also means taking care of yourself even when it is hard. For example, I booked an appointment with a dermatologist, recently, because I had a spot on my shoulder that was itchy. It wasn’t a mole, it was a pink spot that wasn’t going away. In my gut I knew I needed to get it checked out even though I had every excuse not to go. I had a 2 month old baby and toddler at home, so getting out was very hard! But, I remembered hearing that itchy spots on the skin could be cancer, so I went in.
As soon as the dermatologist examined the spot, she suspected it to be skin cancer. She sent in a biopsy to get it checked out. She confirmed, I had basal cell carcinoma, a form of skin cancer. It was difficult to hear that I had cancer. I was scared! I booked an appointment to have Mohs surgery, where they remove the unhealthy layers of skin until they get to the healthy layers. The surgery was approximately 20-30 minutes in total and the recovery process was about 10 days. The remaining scar is a continuous reminder to me to always protect myself in the sun!
I am thankful for the experience because I’m more mindful of how I protect myself, and my family from the sun. One of the best ways is wearing sun protective clothing. Coolibar’s UPF 50+ clothing is guaranteed to block 98% of UVA/UVB rays and helps you stay comfortable in the sun.
When my 8-year-old daughter, Rowan, was little, she would go up to people on the street to tell them all about her life: her latest adventures, her dreams of running a museum, an animal rescue, being a famous singer and on and on. Then and now, she wants to be seen and to be able to tell her story. Gorlin syndrome is part of her story.
Rowan was diagnosed with Gorlin syndrome, a rare genetic disorder, when she was 5 years old. After a couple of years bouncing around to various doctors for odd things and monitoring bumps on her face and body, a pediatric dermatologist biopsied one of them and determined it was a basal cell carcinoma (BCC), a type of skin cancer associated with Gorlin syndrome. Gorlin syndrome is also known as Nevoid Basal Cell Carcinoma Syndrome (NBCCS) due to the proliferation of BCCs in affected individuals.
Our family was floored, unsure of how to navigate all the doctor’s appointments, protocols, new recommendations, treatment options, and our mental health. Our diagnosing dermatologist suggested we connect with the Gorlin Syndrome Alliance (GSA), a patient advocacy organization focused on building community, seeking better treatments, and improving the quality of life of those affected by Gorlin syndrome.
Connecting with the GSA has been a beautiful silver lining, as we have met incredible people who have supported Rowan and our family on this journey. Rowan met another girl with Gorlin syndrome, who gave her a stuffed elephant that she treasures; it reminds her that she is not alone.
In Rowan’s first surgery, she had about two dozen BCCs removed from her face and body. Since then, she has had over 1000 BCCs treated in a variety of ways, from excision and laser removals to photo dynamic therapy and a variety of topical creams. She also sees a genetic counselor as well as numerous other specialists, and has maintained her outgoing demeanor, even crafting elaborate mazes on paper for her doctors.
Nothing will fully stop the unrelenting growth of her BCCs but reducing UV exposure from sunlight is crucial to minimizing her BCC burden. High SPF sunscreen and sunblock only provide so much protection; but UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) clothing is best. Coolibar offers kids clothing that protects her with the highest rated UPF 50+ that blocks 98% of UVA/UVB rays. Rowan wears sun hats, sunscreen, and UPF clothing every day. Coolibar’s sun hats have at least a 3” wide brim to protect her scalp, ears, neck and face from the sun.
Gorlin syndrome and UV protection is a big part of her life, but Coolibar helps it be a smaller part, so she can focus on being the amazing, outgoing, inspiring, strong-willed kid that she is. Rowan is heading into her 3rd grade year at French American International School this year, and she has so much of her story ahead of her. I can’t wait to experience her impact on the world — she’s just getting started.
Protecting your skin with a physical barrier like clothing is one of the most simple and effective ways to prevent sun damage, though not all clothing is created equal. Understanding the UPF meaning and rating system is critical when shopping for sun protective clothing.
Dealing with the aftermath of a sunburn from a long day at the beach can not only be painful and uncomfortable, but it can cause internal damage and increase your risk of skin cancer. Preventing sunburn doesn’t have to involve greasy sunscreen and reapplication schedules. We’ll cover the definition of UPF sun protection, UPF vs. SPF, and the best clothing for sun protection so you can enjoy the outdoors safely.
You’ve probably noticed rash guards on more and more people at the beach, but did you know that there are nearly endless options for clothing that protects from the sun? So, what does UPF mean exactly, and what does it stand for? It stands for Ultraviolet Protection Factor and is the rating system used for fabrics. The higher the rating, the better the fabric’s protection against the sun’s spectrum of UV (ultraviolet) rays that can harm our skin.
There are different electromagnetic waves around us all the time. All waves have energy and some are natural while other are man-made. Some are harmful and while others are not so harmful.
Ultraviolet spectrum is a part of the electromagnetic waves that are not visible and are produced naturally. They are harmful to the skin, and we need to protect ourselves from them.
If we don’t protect ourselves from these UV rays, energies from ultraviolet rays / waves can pierce through our skin and reach different cell parts affecting our chromosomes. The cells then behave abnormally, and the new cell creation are not in control, thus causing cancer.
Quality UPF clothing is made with UV wavelength in mind, preventing dangerous levels of UV from reaching your body.
Later, we’ll go over the difference between SPF and UPF, one of the most common questions surrounding this topic. Aside from seeking shade at the beach, having UV protection of 50+ in your clothing is the best way to prevent sun damage for you and your entire family.
Easy to Use
Works Wet or Dry
What is UPF Rating
UPF rating is a system made to help users understand their clothing’s level of protection. At this point you are probably wondering what the numbers actually mean. What is UPF 50 compared to UPF 10? The numbers in the rating indicate how much of the sun’s UV rays are absorbed by the fabric, thus preventing them from reaching your skin.
UPF is followed by a number, ex. UPF 50 means 1 out of 50 portion of the UV reaches the body. This means 1/50= 2%
If the product is mentioned as UPF 10, it means 1 out of 10 portion = 10% of the UV rays reaches the body.
UPF 20= 1/20 = 5%. 95% UV reaches the skin
UPF 30 = 1/30 = 3.3%
UPF 40 = 1/25 = 2.5%
UPF 50 is considered a good level of protection, i.e. only 2% reaches your body.
Does only a percent or a half percent makes a big difference? The answer depends on how long would you be exposed to UV rays. A small percentage difference for long period of time is significant.
Difference Between UPF and SPF
Let’s take a look at the difference between SPF and UPF. UPF is a rating system used exclusively for sun protection offered by clothing, while SPF (sun protection factor) is a rating system used solely for sunscreen. Similar to UPF, the higher the SPF rating, the better the sun protection for your skin. The most important differences between the two are listed below.
UPF is the standard rating for clothing, while SPF is the standard rating for sunscreen
UPF applies to both UVA and UVB rays, while sunscreen applies to UVB rays only
UPF should not need to be reapplied to ensure protection, while sunscreen does
4 Things You Need to Know About UPF Protection
Not all clothing can be made UPF 50+.
UV protection is better achieved with tight weaving/ knit, thick yarn, dark colors. It should not allow UV rays that have wavelength of UVA (315-400 nm) UVB (280-315 nm) to pass through the micro holes between the yarn.
Challenge: Not comfortable, heavy, does not let sweat pass through and limited color choices. Comfortable fabrics are normally light, thin.
Mesh fabric or loosely knitted / woven fabric cannot be used. Sometimes two layers of fabric or lining are used in hats to make sure that the UV rays do not reach the head.
Challenge: How to make a fabric that is both UV protection, comfortable and have all the colors like any other elegant clothing.
To achieve both, we have to study different fabrics and test it under a UV testing machine to find the right option. Many clothing company trust the fabric vendors who may or may not test the fabric well before the use, or it may not be tested regularly to assure that all the lots of fabric used are really UPF 50+. At Coolibar, we have tested many garments with this claim and sadly only 50% of them passed the real UPF 50+.
UPF Ratings Do Not Exceed 50+
UPF can exceed 50. UPF 50+ has a + sign which has a very significant meaning. It means over 50. This could be 100% coverage, i.e. not even a single portion reaches the body.
If a fabric allows only 1% of UV reaches the body, then it is 1/100 which is equal to UPF100. If it allows only 0.5%, then the rating is UPF200
Why is it not specifically called out? Currently, there isn’t an official rating for clothing that completely blocks all UVA/UVB rays, so the maximum rating given to any fabric with a UPF rating higher than 50 is 50+.
Coolibar is the world leader in UPF 50+ fabric technology, so you can guarantee you are getting maximum sun protection with every purchase. Some of our fabrics even block out 100% of UVA and UVB rays! Be cautious of any clothing brand that lists a rating greater than 50. Neither of those are accurate or official ratings for fabrics.
Maximum rating is currently 50+
Coolibar offers the highest rated sun protection clothing
Watch out for brands claiming ratings above 50
UPF Washes Out of Some Brands
UPF can wash out. Cotton fabric shrinks after multiple washes, the holes between the yarn get smaller so there’s more UPF than before. If the garment is not well handled and gets stretched through different washing or drying process, the holes can become bigger and looses its properties.
Some fabric cannot achieve the UPF 50+ without a certain chemical treatment, especially light fabric, some fabric composition and specific light colors. If these chemicals are not well locked into the fabric construction at the time of manufacturing, and comes out after the wash, then the UPF level will fall.
Instead, purchase confidently with our industry-leading fabrics. At Coolibar, our sun protective clothing blocks 98% of UVA/UVB rays and never washes or wears out, no matter how much you sweat or swim.
Look for active ingredients infused in every fiber
Avoid spray ons or laundry aides
Coolibar’s sun protection never washes out
Look for the Skin Cancer Foundation’s Seal of Recommendation
You have options when it comes to UPF clothing, but not all companies are backed by the Skin Cancer Foundation’s Seal of Recommendation. It’s crucial to look for this seal, especially if you’re shopping for clothing for working in the sun or clothing for long days at the beach.
The Skin Cancer Foundation’s seal is trusted worldwide, indicating safe and effective sun protection, and Coolibar was the first clothing company to receive it. To meet this recommendation, fabrics must have a minimum of UPF 30 protection. Coolibar goes above and beyond Skin Cancer Foundation-approved clothing with all products rated 50+.
Skin Cancer Foundation’s Recommendation awarded for safe sun products
UPF Clothing Must be at Least a 30 Rating
Coolibar’s Products Are the Highest Rated UPF 50+
Seek Out Brands That Rigorously Test Their UPF Products
Aside from the Skin Cancer Foundation’s Seal, continuous product testing is necessary to maintain product integrity year after year. Sadly, this is an overlooked step for many clothing companies.
Look for brands who specialize in UPF clothing and have been focused on this as their main business mission for many years. There are brands who carry UPF clothing but it is only a small part of their brand and they do not take it that seriously.
At Coolibar, UPF is what we do. Brands that know UPF inside and out can explain their manufacturing and testing processes. They have the necessary tools and team to control their fabric and product process. It is worth paying extra money for reliability.
Brands with no obvious background in sun safety and claim to sell low price UPF 50+ clothing should not be trusted. It can be very dangerous. If you wear these types of clothing regularly, you may end up regretting it when you have to visit your dermatologist.
We have a rigorous testing process for all our fabrics. We test multiple times against the world’s highest rating standards for UV transmittance and safety. We also perform life cycle tests to ensure that even after laundering, exposure to sunlight, and chlorinated water, your Coolibar clothing offers the same sun protection.
UV Transmittance and Safety Testing
Life Cycle Testing
Coolibar’s Fabrics All Meet the World’s Highest UPF Standards
Why is Coolibar the Best Sun Protective Clothing Brand?
Coolibar’s 100% business is Sun Protection products for different users. We’ve been in the business for more than 20 years and all users have appreciated our reliability.
We have invested in multiple UV testing machines and all our offices throughout the world have these machines. Each machines cost more than $30,000.
Each fabric lots are tested at the time of approval for first usage and then each lot of fabric for bulk production thereafter. We allow the vendors to cut the fabric only when the test is done. We can trace each garment back to each lot of fabric used.
Before selecting a fabric to be used in our styles, we test the fabric before wash for UPF 50+, then we do 40 cycles of wash and expose it to 100 hours of xenon light simulating real sunlight and then retest again for UPF 50+. We can confidently say that our UPF50+ is guaranteed for lifetime of the garment.
We also take into consideration the design of the products. For example, to help manage perspiration, we use mesh fabric in our clothing but not in places where there is direct exposure to sunlight. We add technical features such as thumb hole, high collar, etc. to provide extra sun protection.
Shop Coolibar’s High Quality, Technical, Elegant Sun Protection You Wear
Whether you are embracing the Coastal Grandmother trend or shopping for a new look for your next garden party, Coolibar has you covered with the highest rated UPF 50+ clothing on the market. You don’t need to sacrifice style or comfort with our highly technical and elegant clothing for the entire family.
Coolibar is the industry leader in UPF fabric technology, trusted and recommended by dermatologists worldwide. Discover more sun safety tips on our blog from our team of experts!
Have you ever found yourself asking, “What can I use instead of sunscreen”? Maybe it’s the stickiness or the need to constantly reapply that is making you consider something different. The good news is that there are plenty of sunscreen alternatives out there that provide just as much protection while being better for your body and the environment.
Sun protection is relevant for everyone, no matter who you are or where you live. While chemical sunscreens are probably the most common solution, they are not the best one. We’ll cover some of the top alternatives to sunscreen so you can feel confident making the switch.
Why Should You Protect Your Skin with Alternatives to Sunscreen?
The conventional sunscreens lining grocery store shelves are often loaded with active chemical ingredients that can wreak havoc on your body, internally and externally. Many of the chemicals are linked to skin irritation and allergies and can also be absorbed through the skin, enter your bloodstream, and disrupt your body’s hormones.
Chemical sunscreens aren’t great for the environment either, causing damage to coral reefs and other marine organisms. Incorporating natural alternatives to sunscreen into your routine is your best bet for a healthier you.
Avoid harmful chemicals: reducing the number of toxic substances entering our bodies is the primary reason to find a natural alternative to sunscreen.
Allow for healthy absorption of Vitamin D: natural sunscreen alternatives allow your body to maintain a healthy level of Vitamin D, some of which need to be absorbed directly from the sun.
Less risk of skin allergies: a natural sunscreen substitute will be healthier for your skin and body as a whole, reducing the likelihood of skin allergies and other issues.
Protect the environment: switching to a natural alternative to sunscreen will have a positive effect on your body and also the environment.
What to Use Instead of Sunscreen
You may have heard before that some exposure to the sun is healthy and necessary for your body to function correctly. If you always cover your body in chemical sunscreens, it will interfere with the body’s essential absorption of Vitamin D from the sun.
Vitamin D deficiency can lead to weakness, loss of bone density, and other problems. In addition, a healthy amount of blue light from the sun through your eyes and skin in the morning helps to regulate your body’s circadian rhythm and boost your mood.
Fortunately, plenty of natural alternatives to sunscreen are effective at preventing skin damage while allowing your body to get the Vitamin D it needs from the sun. Try incorporating one or more of the sunscreen alternatives below into your everyday routine.
Keep Your Skin Covered With UPF Clothing
Time Your Exposure to the Sun
Seek Shade From the Sun
Arguably one of the most accessible and convenient alternatives to sunscreen is UPF Clothing, Sun Protection You Wear. Incorporating UPF clothing into your everyday wardrobe allows you to ditch the sunscreen regimen and have a built-in healthy sunscreen alternative.
When shopping for UPF Clothing, the ratings are based on how much UV light can be absorbed through the fabric, which is different from the SPF rating used for sunscreens. Look for a UPF rating of at least 50 in clothing for the best protection. Coolibar is the world leader in UPF 50+ fabric technology, so you can be confident that your skin is well-protected. At Coolibar, we make garments that are elegant and has technical features of sun protection you wear.
Time Your Sun Exposure
Although sometimes tricky to pull off, timing your sun exposure can be a good substitute for sunscreen. Pay attention to your skin type, the UV index, and the altitude of your location when planning time outdoors. If you can optimize your time outdoors for when the UV index is at its lowest, you can avoid sun damage altogether.
Because the UV index is lowest in the morning and night, it can be difficult to avoid the outdoors during the day. Keep UPF clothing on hand for those times when you can’t avoid the outdoors during the peak heat of the day. It will keep you protected from the sun and cooler than regular clothing!
Seeking shade from the sun is another easy way to prevent sunburn that is chemical-free. Especially on beach days or summer vacations when you are outside for long periods, creating shade for yourself can have a significant impact. Why not opt for a hike through the woods, where you will naturally get shade from the sun?
For days at the beach, Coolibar has a variety of sun-safe accessories like sun blankets and sun umbrellas that are lightweight and perfect for travel. Or, create your own unique sun shade to protect you and your family from the sun.
Check out Coolibar’s blog for more tips on how to enjoy the sun responsibly.
Protect Your Skin with Coolibar’s Sunscreen Alternatives
It’s no wonder UPF clothing is consistently at the top of the list for sunscreen alternatives. Of course, there are many sunscreen substitutes out there, but safely enjoying the sun doesn’t have to be a struggle! Incorporate UPF clothing into your wardrobe, and you’ll be set for any outdoor adventure.
Regardless of the season, we’re all at risk of sunburn and developing other sun-related damage, so sun safety is relevant to everyone. Have you ever wondered if you can get sunburned on cloudy days? The answer may surprise you.
Sun protection isn’t just for summer. We’re here to cover some of the most important aspects of sun protection in cloudy weather so you can stay safe from the sun year-round. Read on to learn more about UV rays and how you can best avoid sunburn.
Before we find out if you can get sunburned through clouds, let’s cover the definition of UV rays and the three different types. Ultraviolet (UV) rays are invisible light rays emitted from the sun and are broken down into three groups based on the wavelength measured in nanometers (nm).
Ultraviolet A (UVA): long wavelength rays (315 to 400 nm) that are less intense but penetrate deep into the skin and cause tanning. UVA rays are responsible for skin aging and wrinkles by breaking down collagen fibers.
Ultraviolet B (UVB): medium wavelength rays (280 to 315 nm) that penetrate only the superficial layers of the skin. UVB rays are responsible for sunburn and are more intense and harmful to the skin’s DNA.
Ultraviolet C (UVC): short wavelength rays (100 to 280 nm) that are completely absorbed by the ozone layer, so they don’t reach your skin.
Can You Get Sunburned on a Cloudy Day?
Now that we understand what UV rays are, and the differences between the three types, can you still get sunburned on a cloudy day? The answer is yes–you can get sunburned on a cloudy day. In fact, clouds only block 10% of the sun’s rays, meaning up to 90% of UVA/UVB rays can reach your skin depending on the type and extent of cloud coverage.
Sun through clouds can be more dangerous because you might not realize you’re being exposed and may not take the necessary precautions. A few telltale signs of a cloudy day sunburn are skin sensitivity, warmth, irritation and itching.
UV rays can travel through clouds
Level of absorption depends on cloud type
Sunburn when cloudy can be even more harmful because you might not expect it
Can You Get Sunburned on a Stormy Day?
Regardless of the time of year, the sun’s rays can cause lasting damage to your skin. UV rays on cloudy days and stormy days can be just as likely to cause sunburn as UV rays in the heat of summer. Our skin can absorb UV rays directly from the sun, and indirectly through the reflection of water, sand, concrete and fresh snow. To avoid overcast sunburn, wear UPF 50+ clothing, keep a sun hat on hand and incorporate sunscreen into your daily routine.
UV exposure is increased by certain surfaces like sand and snow
Sunburns can happen in any season, even winter
Prevent sunburn by wearing both UPF 50+ clothing and accessories and SPF
One of the simplest ways to avoid sunburn on a cloudy day is to keep your skin adequately covered with UPF 50+ clothing and accessories. When it comes to using clothing as sun protection, not all garments protect from sun damage. Search for the highest quality, rigorously tested UPF 50+ clothing that never washes out.
With Coolibar, you can be 100% certain that our technical and elegant fabrics will provide you with the highest level of coverage and quality year-round. Check out some of our favorites for you and your family below.
You’re likely used to wearing sun hats at the beach or on the golf course in the summer, but wearing hats in cloudy, stormy or snowy weather is just as important. Look for sun hats with a brim of at least 3 inches to protect the delicate skin around your eyes and forehead. Coolibar offers a variety of seasonless styles and colors for any outdoor activity. Shop some of our most popular sun hats below!
Most people own umbrellas to stay dry in the rain, but what about sun umbrellas? They can be incredibly useful to create shade from harmful UV rays at the beach, golf course or on your patio. Their intelligent design makes transport a breeze. Take a look at our top sellers below.
Whether you’re planning a long beach day or a ski trip in the mountains, wearing sunscreen daily is one of the most important ways to protect your skin from the sun. Sunscreen is most effective when incorporated into your daily routine, so you’re covered no matter the season.
When shopping for sunscreens, look for a broad spectrum for coverage against UVA and UVB rays. If you aren’t sure what level of protection to go for, take some time to learn what SPF ratings really mean and which is best for you.
Explore more of our highest rated UPF 50+ clothing and accessories for men, women and kids!
Protect Your Skin in Any Weather with Coolibar UPF 50+ Clothing
Sunny, snowy, cloudy, stormy–keep your skin protected in all conditions and seasons. The sun’s rays are sneaky and can reach you through clouds and even when you’re indoors. Coolibar is not only the world leader in UPF 50+ fabric technology but also the first clothing company to receive the Skin Cancer Foundation’s Seal of Recommendation for safe and effective sun protection.
Long days at the beach can be incredibly relaxing and rejuvenating, but they can also wreak havoc on your skin. What’s more, keeping up your sunscreen regimen can be challenging, especially with young children.
Since most beaches aren’t covered with shady trees, you will need to create your own shade! There are three significant sources of beach shade you can bring with you to keep you and your family covered while enjoying the sun and sand.
Applying a broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher
Cover your skin by wearing lightweight, long-sleeved shirts, pants, hats, and sunglasses. Select clothing with an ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) for more effective production
Seeking out shade, especially when the sun is at its strongest between 10:00 am and 2:00 pm
Most remember to apply sunscreen and sun protective swimwear, especially when it comes to young people. But they don’t always seek out shade! Coolibar has got you covered…literally. Here are some beach shade ideas for your next vacation in the sun.
DIY Beach Sun Shade Ideas
Shady Wide-Brimmed Hats
First and foremost, protection starts at the top. You need a hat! The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends a hat with a brim of at least three inches to shade your scalp, neck, shoulders, and upper back, along with easily overlooked places like the tops of the ears and back of the neck.
There are many fashion hats out there made with materials that allow UV Rays to penetrate the fabric and reach the skin, but with a UPF 50+ hat, you don’t have to worry about it! Here are some of our tried and true favorites:
Second on our list of convenient sun shade options is the beach umbrella. The Intego beach umbrella is made with rigorously tested, highest-rated UPF 50+ material and is even tilt adjustable to maximize sun blockage. You can be sure it will last you for many beach trips with the following technical features:
Easy to transport
Effectively provides shade for up to two people
Stay cool and protected with Coolibar’s UPF 50+ beach umbrella, a sunshade you can transport wherever your next adventure takes you.
Tiny Home on the Beach
A beach canopy or tent is usually made up of four posts with a piece of fabric on top and is an excellent option for a larger group of people. There’s really no limit to how large you can make it, so you can feel confident that your children are getting adequate shade. Beach canopies require just a few materials, are easily packable, and can be made in various sizes and heights, depending on your needs. Below are the materials you’ll utilize to create a beach canopy of your own.
Posts: we recommend using four posts anchored vertically in the sand as the base. You can use tent poles or even sticks found along the beach!
Fabric: for the best protection, use a dark or dense material such as canvas or woven cloth.
Clamps: you’ll need four clamps or another type of fastener to secure the fabric to the posts.
Towels or Chairs: enjoy a snooze or a snack in the shade under your newly created beach canopy!
If you’re not looking to create your own, many Coolibar customers love the Shibumi Shade. It’s lightweight, easy to set up, and can provide shade for the whole family.
Now that you’ve learned about the importance of sunshades, check out Coolibar’s blog for more sun-safe tips and shop their selection of Sun Protection You Wear.
Protect Your Skin at the Beach with Coolibar
Whether you choose to DIY at the beach or purchase one of your own to use for many years to come, a sunshade is a must for your next warm weather getaway. You’ll not only have a spot for everyone to gather, but you’ll keep your skin covered and have a chance to cool off from the sun. With so many varieties of sunshades, there’s one to fit every situation.
You received an invitation to an outdoor wedding. It’s going to be beautiful, but it’s August in the U.S. and it’s guaranteed to be sunny and hot.
Find something to wear that won’t cause you to melt before the reception starts or get a sun burn from overexposure!
Sun protective clothing that keeps you fresh and cool in the sun and shields your skin from UV rays! To build your perfect garden party wedding attire, we go back to the simple steps to protect your skin. The same rules apply whether you’re on a hike or watching an outdoor wedding ceremony.
The Aire™ fabric of our Garden Party outfit collection is luxurious, silky soft, feather-light and breathable with a built-in stretch. It was specifically designed to tolerate hot, humid days or long hours under the sun! Here are some of our favorite looks and the UPF 50+ accessories to go with them…
Clara Sun Hat & Calvada Cover-Up Dress Outfit
The beauty of the Calvada Cover-Up Dress is that you can customize the fit to compliment your shape. Wear it open and loose, or add a skinny belt to accentuate your waist, or a thick belt to create shape.
Vedra V-Neck Tunic Top & Marigot Midi Skirt Outfit
Add the Bodrum Sun Shawl to protect your shoulders until the sun goes down, then provide some warmth when the sun has set!
Technical Fabrics for Men
When dressing men for a garden attire wedding, it’s all about finding the right fabrics in classic styles like the button down or polo. To meet the challenge, we have a few fabrics and styles to choose from…
A Cooler Classic Button Down
Aricia Sun Shirt and Holden Packable Travel Fedora
Typically, you don’t think of a long-sleeve button-down shirt as a warm weather basic, but that is exactly what the Aricia Sun Shirt is. It was designed with strategically placed vents that circulate air into the shoulder and underarm area. With its moisture wicking, lightweight and breathable 3Ddri™ fabric it’s an incredible way to stay cool and protected from the sun.
The technical genius of the Vita Button Down is the fact that it is made with our Active Athlon™ fabric made for our active line. It was designed to work best when the body is especially warm either from the sun or exertion. It’s lightweight, breathable and moisture wicking, the perfect attire for a garden party.
The Arobello Polo brings a little elegance to the classic men’s style. It’s all about the Active Diamond™ fabric and the jacquard knit construction with a subtle raised pattern that accelerates moisture wicking for fast quick-dry performance.
For the bridesmaids and groomsmen standing out in the sun, recommend that they are gifted accessories to stay sun-safe! They’ll look oh-so-sun-smart and elegant in the wedding photos.
Pesaro Sun Shawl
This is the perfect drape to keep bridesmaids cool and protect them from UV rays.
Peyton Lightweight Fedora
The Peyton Lightweight Fedora is a classic way to add sun-safety at the top! It has a 3” brim to shield the scalp, face and neck, and is made with a paperbraid that maintains its look and shape.
Stay Sun-Safe and Look Elegant in Coolibar at Your Next Garden Party
Garden party formals almost always involve extended periods outdoors, so in addition to ensuring your outfit is appropriate for the occasion, keep your skin protected with Coolibar’s highest-rated UPF 50+ clothing for the whole family. Not all clothing is the same when it comes to sun protection. Use this guide as a resource for your next garden party outfit!
By: Chad Novak, Director of Studio Photography at Coolibar
On January 1st, I moved from a high-deductible pay-full-price-out-of-pocket-for-everything insurance plan to a low-copay and no-referral-needed plan. It was exciting for me. I felt like Andy in that episode of Parks and Recreation where Andy and April realize they have medical insurance and go to the doctor for literally everything. I felt that free.
My first doctor visit with my new insurance was to a dermatologist. This was my first visit to a dermatologist in more than a decade. I had no prior visits to this doctor and I was unfamiliar with this doctors process. I remember feeling a little surprised at how many medical professionals were in the room with me (5 to be exact). They stepped out for a minute to allow me to change into a gown, and then they all returned a moment later (all 5 of them). I was overcome by modesty in the presence of all these strangers, but the doctor put me at ease and began her full-body check.
From head-to-toe, armpit to fingertip, she examined all of my moles. “Nothing strange”, about any of them she said, except one. She asked me about a mole on my back, and I said, “What mole?” I had no idea there was an odd-shaped multi-color mole on my back. And how would I, I don’t have a way to look at my back regularly and certainly not something smaller than a pencil eraser. She asked if she could biopsy the mole and send it to a lab for testing. Of course, I agreed. And I was on my way.
A few days later I received a call from my dermatologist. I learned that I results from the lab test revealed the mole was melanoma. I was shocked. She explained that it was Stage 1A and asked for me to schedule an appointment to have it removed right away. I asked if I could just “let it go”, to which she replied, “That is not an option”. I couldn’t help but feel scared in that moment. That went from zero to serious fast. My mind raced with fears about the cancerous cells spreading, and I felt unsettled about the fact that if I had not chosen to go to the dermatologist when I did, I could be facing a life-threatening situation.
Here is an alarming fact: It’s possible for melanoma cancer to spread to your entire body in as little as 4-6 weeks. 45 Days – and you might be terminal. I had no idea things could go so bad so quickly and I would not feel a thing in my body. It’s hard to wrap my head around that. But it’s real. And it opened my eyes to the dangers of letting things go. Or just acting like I’m fine.
My diagnosis opened a pandoras box. I have full body exams scheduled every 90 days for the next 5 years, I have had multiple treatments on my incision area to reduce scarring, and I just learned that my life insurance was dropped. It feels like a lot. It became a bigger deal than I wanted. But had it gone differently, I may not be writing this story.
Here’s what I know. The decision I made saved my life. I think about that once and while to remind myself that I’m not invincible like I think I am. This experience taught me an important life lesson: It is not a sign of weakness (as a man) to go to a doctor.
Coolibar is the world leader in UPF 50+ fabric technology. Our technically elegant clothing can help you achieve the perfect coastal grandma aesthetic.
Learn more about sun-safe grandma fashion trends from a popular Instagram influencer on our blog.
What is the Coastal Grandmother Trend?
The coastal grandmother trend is about wearing comfortable clothes that make you feel good and protects you from the sun. The term coastal grandma became popular when a TikTok user named Lex Nicoleta started talking about it in her videos. Surprisingly, she is in her 20s, reminding us that the coastal grandmother aesthetic is for women of all ages! It’s also sometimes referred to as grandmacore aesthetic or granny core.
The coastal grandma aesthetic was inspired by several movies created by filmmaker Nancy Myers. The aesthetic includes lots of beige and other neutral tones. A coastal grandma may spend her Sunday morning at the farmers’ market and her afternoon carefully cooking fresh food. She enjoys the simple pleasures of life like gardening and hand-written notes.
Notable films, TV shows, and celebrities that influenced the coastal grandma aesthetic include:
Father of the Bride
Something’s Gotta Give
Sun-Safe Style Tips for the Grandma Aesthetic
Grandmothers know the importance of sun protection which is why Coolibar’s Sun Protection You Wear pairs perfectly with the grandma aesthetic. Here are some beach aesthetic clothing trends inspired by grandma’s style.
While it may seem counterintuitive, long sleeves help circulate airflow and actually keep your skin cooler than wearing short sleeves while out in the sun. Better yet, consider a flowy dress or long-sleeve tunic as the basis for your grandma look. Here are some grandma aesthetic-inspired options:
Topping off your outfit with an elegant sun hat can totally transform any look. Whether you choose a full-coverage hat or a fedora style, you want something made with rigorously tested UPF 50+ material to protect the sensitive skin on your face and scalp. Explore our large collection of sun hats to find the right one for your glamorous gran style:
The coastal aesthetic is all about comfort and mobility. Wide-leg pants provide more range of movement for activities such as squatting down in the garden or walking on the beach. These pants are also feather-light and breathable for maximum air circulation on hot summer days. With wide-leg pants from Coolibar, you don’t have to sacrifice comfort for coverage.
Consider some of our sun wraps or cover-ups to complete your collection of grandma attire. For colder months, you can get your grandma sweater aesthetic on with hot chocolate next to a warm fire. When choosing the best layers of sun protection you wear, always prioritize comfort and coverage. You won’t be disappointed!
We all know how much the right outfit matters for any occasion, but remember, that’s just the beginning of the journey towards embodying the beach grandma aesthetic.
Comfort is Key
For many of us, getting older means learning a valuable secret: life is way more fun in comfortable clothes! The beachy aesthetic really lends itself to comfort more than other trends—no need for tight waistbands or tops when you can have loose button-ups and wide-leg pants.
Consider what it is that you really love about your favorite pieces of comfy clothing and try to incorporate that as you expand your coastal grandmother wardrobe.
Choose materials that are lightweight and breathable, like our buttery soft Aire and Moduri clothing lines.
Look for pants with a drawstring for maximum waistband comfort
Embrace Ease and Versatility
There are many ways to prevent sunburn at the beach while fully embodying the beachy grandma lifestyle. They include wearing a UPF 50+ full coverage sun hat and breathable clothes. Luckily, beach aesthetic clothes usually promote ease of movement by being loose and flowy. Layers add versatility to your look to protect you from the sun and keep you warm on cool, breezy days.
Keep a shapeable or roll-up sun hat in your car for impromptu adventures.
Seek out clothing that can be paired with various styles and items that you already own.
Build outfits with flowy layers to help prevent sunburn and regulate body temperature.
Self-Confidence and Self-Acceptance
The Golden Girls inspired a generation of women to be confident and independent as they age. Now, Golden Girls’ fashion is more popular than ever, which reflects how much this lifestyle continues to resonate with younger generations. While cool grandma clothes are part of it, this trend is really about self-confidence and self-acceptance.
Choose clothes that make you feel good without focusing on how they look in the mirror
Use a vision board to help you discover your own unique grandma clothes aesthetic
Don’t be afraid to express yourself. Remember to have fun!
Embrace Your Inner Coastal Grandmother with Coolibar
Getting older doesn’t mean sacrificing style. On the contrary, Grandma fashion empowers women of all ages to dress in a way that’s technically smart and still very elegant. You want your cool grandma outfits to keep you comfortable and sun-safe for many years to come. Unfortunately, a lot of flowy, breathable clothing allows light to pass through, which means you can get sunburned through your clothes.