Do UPF Clothes From Walmart Work? Well, I trust the sunscreens, why not their clothing?
“I wonder, do UPF clothes from Walmart work?” Overhearing this comment, made me realize that I had not considered the question of where the product was from as being a guarantee for the product!
So, I immediately went to their website. The brands and styles there were very basic sportswear styles that are like my family wears. Choices of long and short sleeve tee shirts. Wicking choices, non-wicking.
These Comments Seem Legit
Then the comments left from customers:
“Perfect for Mowing Season! “
“My son mows lawns for extra money during the summer and I am always terrified of him being in the sun for so long. Even with sunscreen, he can come home a bit toasty.”
“This shirt has been a godsend! It is lightweight so it doesn’t feel bulky like a regular t-shirt but it also has sun protection! We will be getting more!”
Then there was a review left by an adult:
“Really Nice Sun Shirt!”
“I’ve had this for a week or two now and I’m really enjoying it. I think everyone these days understands the dangers of getting too much sun.”
“So, I was pretty excited to give it a try. I’ve been wearing it when I go out for my evening yard chores. You would think with the long sleeves and dark color that it would get you overheated. But it really doesn’t.”
“It’s very comfortable. It’s actually cooling because it’s so thin and the wind can blow right through it. An added benefit that I’ve noticed is that I no longer need bug repellent on my arms as they’re now covered. I can see myself ordering a couple more of these in the near future.”
I usually consider customer comments to be kind of accurate. I know the kinds of comments I leave are accurate to the best of my knowledge.
So based on those reviews, I would feel comfortable ordering the shirt these comments were about.
I do think that in most cases regardless of the product manufacturer or where the product is sold, you as a shopper have to acquire some kind of comfort in the products.
In our family, we have to get used to the feel of the sun blocking fabric. This is true of any product. The brand is important to some, and when I find a brand that I trust, there is more comfort in buying that item.
So, do I know if the $12 UPF tee-shirt is going to work? No, but I would trust trying it to see what a day’s wear for a member of our family would bring.
Would I care where I bought it? No, not important to me. I would feel more comfortable with a trial of a $12 shirt than a $50 shirt.
We learn to trust our retailers and hold them responsible for the success or failure of the trial. By having a chance to try a UVF shirt at a price that doesn’t break the bank, hopefully, more people will have a chance to use the sun blocking clothing.
How Long Do UVF Shirts Last?
When considering the life of a UPF garment, you are thinking about how long it will protect your skin. Most descriptions usually state that the protection lasts 25 or so washes.
The fabric in the shirt commented on is polyester. Polyester is a natural sun blocking fabric. As long as the shirt doesn’t get tight so that it is stretched, it should protect for a long time. Any fabric will wear, in time.
Remember, that looser-fitting shirts are more comfortable. Stretching the fabric increases the chance of the sun getting through.
Coolibar says the life of their garments is 2 years. They are well known for quality clothing. However, at that point, the protection is no longer guaranteed. So, if you are into how many wearings for the life of a garment, compare cost, and see where you are.
The point is if you are interested in UPF clothing you know how important protecting your skin is. You have some awareness of the dangers of the sun.
3 Dangers That Lead To Sunburn
With increased awareness, and more effort to keep our skin safe from sunburn, do you know the 3 dangers that lead to skin damage?
While there are many careless habits that are associated with sunburn, we know that we are moving from the dark ages of skin protection carelessness to a better and safer time.
Overlooking The Need For Broad Spectrum SPF Sunscreen
When you see the term “sun protection factor,” or “SPF,” you know this refers to a sunscreen’s level of protection.
If you are going from little protection at the level of 15 SPF from UVB rays all the way to 50 SPF which is almost a sunblock. The American Academy of Dermatology also describes UVB rays as the “burning rays” because they are the primary cause of sunburn. (UVB = Burn as in sunburn)
We know that the sun also beams down on us ultraviolet A radiation, or UVA rays.
Also many refer to these as “aging rays” because they will prematurely age your skin. This will lead to wrinkles and age spots. (UVA = Aging)
Both UVA and UVB rays are there and will lead to skin cancer.
Sunscreen must protect against both. A marketing term is often used when the product protects against both burning and aging. That term is “wide spectrum.”
This makes it important for you to make sure the phrase “broad spectrum SPF” followed by an SPF number is on the front of the product. To protect yourself more, the American Academy of Dermatology calls for an SPF of at least 30.
Under federal law, manufacturers can use that phrase only on products that pass a broad-spectrum testing procedure.
If you expect to swim or sweat while wearing sunscreen, also look for the word “water-resistant.”
Careless habit # 1 is using any sunscreen that is not a broad spectrum.
Incorrectly Applying Sunscreen
How you apply your sunscreen impacts how the sunscreen works.
If your product is in a bottle, be sure and start by shaking the bottle, even if the directions don’t say to. This helps distribute the active ingredients — which actually do the sun-protecting part throughout the product. Consumer Reports shares some buying guides.
Next, experts advise applying sunscreen 15 to 20 minutes before going into the sun.
As for how much sunscreen, the American Academy of Dermatology recommends using 1 ounce of lotion, enough to fill a shot glass, to cover all of the exposed areas of the body. You can adjust that amount for your body size. The idea is to use enough to protect your skin.
So careless habit #2 is to shake the bottle to mix, apply 15 to 20 minutes before exposing yourself to the sun, and use enough product to protect your skin.
Not Wearing The Right Clothing
To give yourself more sun protection than a sunscreen can offer, slip on a sun hat and your sunglasses. Make sure the hat is tightly woven and that the sun can’t peak through. The brim needs to be 3 inches wide or wider. This is needed to protect your neck, ears, and face where most 1st skin cancers are found.
Your sunglasses will do a better job of protecting your eyes and face if they cover more, so a wraparound style? Or an oversized lens that fits close to your face. These will help keep out the sun better. Almost as important as your hat, wear your sunglasses.
A long sleeve loose fitting sun blocking shirt is important to help protect your skin. After 30 minutes or so in the sun, you should protect yourself with a shirt.
Some fabrics have been rated with an ultraviolet protection factor or UPF. This “factor” helps you decide how long is safe for being outdoors. This factor or number tells you how much UV radiation can penetrate the fabric.
When there is a UPF rating of 30 to 49, the Skin Cancer Foundation considers “very good protection. ”When there is a UPF of 50 or more “excellent protection.”
Moving Past The Overwashed White Tee-Shirt
In general, the Skin Cancer Foundation has tried to make it easier to understand how your clothing can protect you. Using light-colored, lightweight and loosely woven fabrics offers less sun protection than darker and heavier fabrics. According to the foundation:
“That white T-shirt you slip on at the beach when you feel your skin burning provides only moderate protection from sunburn, with an average ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) of 7. At the other end of the spectrum, a long-sleeved dark denim shirt offers an estimated UPF of 1,700 — which amounts to a complete sun block.”
If you can see through a fabric when you hold it up to the light, UV rays can penetrate it. Whether it is the fabric that makes up your sun hat to the shirt and pants to protect your skin. Be aware of how much sun can get to your skin.
So careless habit # 3 is not paying attention to your clothing when you are going to be out in the sun. Ignoring the possibility of the sun causing sunburn through your clothes is real. Make sure to protect your skin.
Some protection is better than nothing!
However, with your awareness of what is needed, and how available the right kind of clothing is, up your game of protecting your skin.
Sami’s Take On Do UPF Clothes From Walmart Work?
The move to protecting your skin from the sun is an important one. Having what you need can sometimes be a bit of a financial hardship. That is why I am glad to see the selections offered in Walmart, Target, Acadamy, and other retail outlets.
When you have a family, it can prove almost impossible to keep everyone properly dressed. With the limited life the items, hand me downs can often not give the protection needed.
So check out your more moderate priced clothing selections. See how you can protect your family. There is also an additive that can be used in the washing machine during the laundry cycle. It leaves puffy threads in the shirts that keep the weave tighter. Almost like a finish on the garment.
Using a product like this, The only one I have tried is by Rite, like the clothing dye. For families this can be a real money saver. It costs more than regular detergent, but less than several new shirts when funds are tight.