What are the basics of Sun Blocking Hats? Do you know what you should expect your Sun Blocking Hats to do? This is the first and most important part of your sun-blocking gear.
I have not given much thought to the formidable job of my headgear choices. I have been assuming any ole hat would do. A hat is the first thing we should search for when we get ready to get outside and in the sun.
Ok, definitely more important than I normally think! Out of the 3 most basic of the sun blocking clothing wardrobe, your sun hat should not be ignored. This hat purchase deserves some serious thought. This is a good time to consider what we should be looking for when shopping for a sun blocking hat.
Your sun blocking hat should have at least a three-inch brim to do a better job of keeping the sun off your head, neck, ears, and nose. While a wider brim is also a good choice, remember to think about the wind. With a brim that is too wide, you will be busy trying to hang on to the hat in a wind.
Your hat must be constructed of a tightly woven fabric that won’t allow the sun’s rays to reach your head. Your head is what the sun reaches first. Think about it. Is this the part of your sun blocking clothing you should short yourself with?
Of course, the number one requirement is that the hat makes you look cool. I understand that part. How do you know which one looks better on you?
Are UPF Hats Important?
According to Skin Cancer.org, Skin cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in the United States. According to this same organization, over half of the more than 5 million skin cancer occurrences diagnosed annually could be prevented!
Sunscreen alone is not doing what we need to do. So we must add some sun blocking clothing to help sunscreen protect our skin.
To start with a good hat is important and will get you set up on a good path to protective clothing to keep the sun off your skin.
The best hats for sun protection have a brim of at least three inches to shade the face, scalp, neck, shoulders, and upper back. These size brims will also help with often easily overlooked places like the tops of the ears and the back of the neck. Protecting your skin from the dangers of the sun’s rays starts with attention to a sun hat.
This hat should be made of a tightly woven fabric or straw or felt. There should be enough crown height to ensure some airflow through vents to help keep you. more comfortable in the heat.
Bucket styles offer good protection and are easy to wear due to the shape of the brim. Bucket style is an easy hat to roll and pack in your backpack or sports bag or tote. Having a hat that survives the time in between wearings is important as well.
A Bit More On Skin Cancers
And how could we reduce the number of skin cancers? Simply by protecting our skin from excessive sun exposure. Another way to slow down skin cancer happening? Not using indoor tanning devices.
Additionally, the same report found that there has been a rapid increase in the rates of melanoma over the past few decades. While melanoma is rising, the American Cancer Society predicts more than 106,100 new melanoma cases will be diagnosed this year.
Melanoma is reportedly only 1 percent of skin cancer diagnoses, but it results in “a large majority of skin cancer deaths.
Sunscreen has been what we have had to work with in the past. However, there are real limits to its effectiveness. The medical community has advised people to rethink relying on sunscreen as their sole protection. from too much sun.
These medical community members have instead suggested that we think of sunscreen as an additional layer. Topical SPF is a great tool, these healthcare professionals remind us that the fact is that sunscreen is not perfect.
When you use chemical sunscreens, the product must be fully absorbed to provide any protection at all. So when using a chemical sunscreen, if it must be fully absorbed to work, thus making this a delayed action part of your protection from the dangers of the sun.
Another consideration when using physical [mineral] sunscreen, if you do not have a consistent application or an area rubs off, then you are not adequately protected.
That’s why UPF clothing and accessories like UPF hats are a great addition to your summer wardrobe. Your sun blocking clothing will go to work immediately. As soon as you slip the garment on. And can cover all areas of the body.
Some More About Hats
Do you wonder what type of hat is best for sun protection? Is that the one that will be best for me?
Your first concern is how much of your head, ears, face, and neck the hat covers. The next concern is comfort. If it isn’t comfortable, you won’t leave it on your head. If it isn’t on your head, you are getting no protection!
What type of hat is best for sun protection? What hat is best for you? Wear a hat that provides shade to your head, ears, face, and neck. Broad-brimmed, bucket hats with a wide brim and legionnaire-style hats provide the most protection.
Baseball caps do not protect the neck and ears.
Here are the common-sense approaches that I was able to find in my search for guidelines.
- You do need some sort of head protection from the sun.
- Anything is better than nothing.
- Brimmed hats protect better than caps with bills.
- While sports like track and field sports, baseball, golf, and tennis usually feature caps, there is a lot of your head area that will be exposed. You will be responsible for getting the sunscreen element of your sun protection in place.
- 3-inch or wider brims on hats are the best.
- A bit of room in the crown of the hat to allow airflow is added comfort.
- Darker colors absorb more UV rays.
- Hat material should be tightly woven with no pinholes.
- The new UVA fabrics do a really good job of keeping out the harmful rays.
- There are varied opinions about the importance of no vents in headgear. However, if a bit of air with vent holes at the side makes the hat more comfortable and wearable, have vents.
- Straw can be woven to be very protective of a hat. Hold it up to the sun and check for pinholes. If the sun comes through, so will the UV rays.
Some Important Points
With anything you try to do to improve your skin’s protection from the sun, you will find it easier to make small steps. If you will start grabbing a hat when you go outdoors, it will soon be a habit. I do agree that sometimes you may be out too early or too late for a real risk of sunburn.
However, if you choose to wear a soft fabric hat with a brim you are programming yourself for remembering when the heat of summer is on us. We are all creatures of habit and habit will be a strong influence for good consistent skin protection when you are going to be out in the direct sun.
I had not realized how much sun we normally get until I started trying to change some old habits for some new ones that would help me protect my skin. In our part of the world, there are many hours of sunshine. I have never been as careful as I should have been. One look at my freckles and sun-damaged skin and it is obvious.
Lifestyle Choices Are Important
Playing catch up for protection won’t do away with what is there, but will help prevent more damage. Good skincare will help diminish the appearance of what is there.
As you go through this late winter and next springtime, maybe you can be more aware of how you can protect your skin and keep the sun from your skin for more hours of your day. Finding a hat you can keep in the car for kids’ sports events that are held outside should be on your list. Do you need a new umbrella?
As you think through what you can do to make your skin sun protection more complete, make good choices. Don’t allow yourself to forget and spend 2 hours with no skin protection sitting out at a ball game watching your child play. If you find yourself without a hat, get under a shade tree. The view may not be as good, but you will be able to see it.
Wear what you have before being unprotected. You may now question how much sun you have will block and that is good. However, if you have the perfect hat and don’t wear it, it does you no good.
Start making your changes. Start shopping for your family’s blocking wardrobe now, before the more direct sunray time of year for your part of the world.
For us here in the hill country of Texas, our sunny days start early and last late. Just last week I allowed my skin to become overexposed while in the car! Did I have sunscreen? Yes, but not on me. All too often I find the errors in my protection plan show up. Now to move forward and correct them.
Sami’s Take On The Basics Of Sun Blocking Hats
I have long used the wind in our part of the world as an excuse to ignore hat-wearing. Now I know that the soft hats with 3-inch brims may need to be tied on. I can do that!
It is an ongoing project and is not nearly done. Where are you in your effort to find the right hat for you? How is your plan coming along? Have you seen some spots in your daily life where you can improve your skins sun blocking clothing protection?