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Sun Protective Clothing: Is It Worth Buying?

By HERWriter
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is buying sun protective clothing worth it? Angel Nieto/PhotoSpin

Dr. Susan Weinkle, a dermatologist from Bradenton, Florida told Today.com that the benefits are worth it. “Most people don't apply enough lotion and still consider themselves protected even after swimming or perspiring heavily, which dilutes sunscreen's effectiveness,” Weinkle said. "Sunscreens just don’t stay on."

However, Dr. Naomi Lawrence, head of Procedural Dermatology at Cooper University Medical Center in Camden, N.J. told the New York Times, “When it comes to sun protection, you really can’t beat a dark shirt with a tight weave and a good hat. There is a lot you can do and not spend a lot of money.”

“Our recommendation is that you stick to clothes with tighter weave and that will provide adequate UPF protection,” said David Andrews, a senior researcher with the Environmental Working Group, which compiles an annual guide to sunscreens.

According to Today.com, over 2 million American are diagnosed with skin cancer each year, so taking extra steps to protect ourselves is warranted.

Be diligent with your use of sunscreen. Practice sun-avoidance behaviors such as steering clear of its rays during the most intense times of the day between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Also, consider either wearing sun protective clothing or other long sleeved, tightly woven clothes and a hat when out in the sun.


New Breed of Products Is Said to Offer Sun Protection, but Doubts Linger. Retrieved July 14, 2013.

UPF clothes may work better than sunscreen. Today.com Health. Retrieved July 14, 2013.

Sun Protection Clothing Basics. REI.com. Retrieved July 14, 2013.

Shedding light on your SunGuard questions. Sunguardsunportection.com. Retrieved July 14, 2013.

Michele is an R.N. freelance writer with a special interest in woman’s healthcare and quality of care issues.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.