Spending time outside is a great way to stay active, reduce stress, and get vitamin D. But be careful while outdoors by protecting your skin from the sun.
Protection from UV rays is essential all year, UV rays can reach you on cloudy and cool days, and they reflect off of surfaces like water, cement, sand, and snow. UV rays tend to be strongest from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daylight saving time (9 a.m. to 3 p.m. standard time). Here are some ways you can protect your skin:
Stay in the shade. You can reduce your risk of sun damage and skin cancer by staying in the shade under an umbrella, tree, or other shelters.
Wear clothing that covers your skin. Try to wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants and skirts, which can protect you from UV rays.
Wear a hat. Wear a hat that has a brim around that shades your face, ears, and the back of your neck. A tightly woven fabric, such as canvas, works best to protect your skin from UV rays. Avoid straw hats with holes that let sunlight through.
Wear sunglasses. Sunglasses protect your eyes from UV rays and reduce the risk of cataracts. They also protect the tender skin around your eyes from sun exposure. Sunglasses that block both UVA and UVB rays offer the best protection. Wrap-around sunglasses work best because they stop UV rays from sneaking in from the side.
Wear sunscreen. Put on a broad-spectrum sunscreen that blocks UVA and UVB rays and has an SPF of 15 or higher before you go outside. Don’t forget to put a thick layer on all exposed skin. Remember, sunscreen wears off, reapply out in the sun for more than 2 hours and after swimming, sweating, or toweling off.
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