Light Or Dark Colors In The Sun?

To raise awareness of skin protection from the sun

What to wear, Light or Dark Colors In The Sun? At this point, we are assuming you want to be protected from the sun and not get sunburned. 

Colors have more effect on your outcome than you realize. 

The science of color for warmer or cooler works like this:

(The fabric your garment is made of will also affect the results.  For this part of the statement, we are saying all things are equal and the only difference in the garment is the color:)

  • Darker colors absorb the sun’s rays better and keep them off your skin.  They don’t release the heat but hold it closer to your skin.  You will be warmer.  Your skin will feel the heat of the sun’s rays more.
  • Lighter colors reflect the sun’s rays and you will feel cooler.  More of the heat of the sun’s rays will be blocked off your skin. Your skin will feel cooler.

In the direct sun,  your lighter color clothing will reflect the UV rays  Make sure you have protected your face, neck, ears, and nose with sunscreen.  The reflected rays can be as damaging as direct ones. 

When thinking about reflected light dangers, this applies to sun reflected off water, cement, or sand. Or light colors or white fabric.

You Can Sunburn With Light Or Dark Colors

If the sun’s rays can get through the garment, regardless of color or UPF protection you can get sunburn.  For a regular untreated fabric to protect your skin it should be a tightly woven fabric like denim.  If you can see the sun through the weave, the sun can eventually get to your skin.

With a fabric treated for UPF for 30 or more, you should be safe, with any color unless your fabric is beginning to show signs of wear. How Is Your Sun Blocking IQ?

As long as your garment is in good condition, you should be protected from the sun.  2 years of normal wear is considered the life of the UPF treatment. If the fabric for some reason is pilling or has snags, there may be some areas that are not 100% anymore. 

With the UPF technology clothing makers have the ability to add treatment or special weaves to any color fabric.   Do you want a garment that is lightweight and easy to wear, plus protects you from the sun’s rays? 

This is why UPF can play an important part in your protection wardrobe.  Denim that is woven tightly enough to protect you from the sun will usually be stiff and heavy.  Your skin won’t burn, but you won’t be very cool either. Basic skin protection

The UPF fabric allows thinner, lighter-weight fabric to protect you from the sun.  Active outdoor sports need these wicking fabrics to help them stay cool and protect their skin from too much sun.

Unfortunately, the very dark tan has long been thought important in the outdoor sports world.  We know now that that tan is dangerous to the skin health of the owner of the tan.  Lightweight cover-up garments are an important part of the sports wardrobe.

Using Clothing To Help Protect Your Skin From The Sun

When you are getting into the world of Sun Blocking Clothing to protect your skin from the sun, basic color information will help.

If you are buying your first garment for blocking the sun why not get the most protection you can from it, right? 

You would think that UPF clothing would follow the same color guidelines as regular clothing.   However, the UPF clothing guarantee says it will block regardless of color.  Your light and dark can block the sun’s rays.

To help your skin feel better in the sun, a garment that reflects the light would seem to be the best choice.  With UPF clothing, you will get as much sun blocking from a lighter color as you will from a darker color.  

  • Remember, darker colors absorb more heat. 
  • Light colors reflect more heat. 

As you think through the protection you will need, figuring out how you will be wearing your garment will help you make better choices.

Are you wanting a darker bathing suit because you feel it will be more flattering?  Are you choosing a color that looks better on your skin tones? Will you be spending more time out of the water than swimming?  

Will you be wearing the top half of your swimsuit as a sun top with shorts or a skirt?  Think about how you will be wearing your swimsuit.  My suggestion is that the UPF of a swimsuit only matters if you are doing something besides swimming in the suit.  

Most people put on a coverup after swimming.  That is when it is important to have sun-blocking garments.  You will need to have more protection once out of the water.  Few people end up with sunburn when under the water.

What Activities Do You Enjoy In The Sun

I work in the yard a bit and attend my grandson’s ball games when I can.  In all honesty, those ball games are about all I do in the hot sun between 10 AM and 4 PM, the dangerous times for us here in central Texas.  

At ball games, our daughter usually brings a popup tent to help with providing shade for a break for the kids.  And for Granmoms when an event is several hours long.   So for me, a color that reflects and doesn’t absorb seems alright.  

I have a red and white checked oversized long-sleeved shirt.  At the point of purchase, I really didn’t understand color and how the sun’s rays handle absorbing and reflecting. 

The small-inch-sized squares of red and white do a good job of reflecting. The blend of cotton and poly provides protection as well as color. 

Without a popup shade, I doubt I would be as comfortable in the shirt.  As I continue to learn more about the dangers of too much sun, being out in the bright, direct sunlight of the day appeals less.  

There have been too many excess exposures to the sun in my lifetime.  Adding more just does not seem wise.

Where Are You In Your Sun Protection Game Plan?

Are you an aware parent and trying to protect you and your kids from too much sun?  

Have you had too much sun as I have and are already visiting a dermatologist’s office on a regular basis? 

Finding the way that works for each of us is important.  We need our own personal skin protection tool kits.  We need some good skin protection habits.  There are ways we can help ourselves that is what we all must do. 

Awareness puts you ahead on the journey to skin protection.  You will enjoy your fun in the sun if you are doing what you can to protect your skin from too much sun.

A wide brim hat, your sunglasses, a sun blocking shirt,  sunscreen.  An umbrella or popup tent if there is no shade to get under. Know what works and prepare. 

When I think about the sunburns we had in the past and how bad we felt, often the next day as well, it is frightening.  Are you the unaware parent I was? 

Light or dark colored in the sun
Sami’s Take On Light Or Dark Colors In The Sun?

By learning the ups and downs of what makes better color choices for wearing in the sun, we can improve our sun safety.

Keeping your skin safer from the sun can sometimes be just a shift in color choices. This is a small adjustment, and you can do it.

Finding a way to stay safer in the sun, can lower your risk of skin cancer. By adjusting the time of day you enjoy outdoor activities you can also improve your risks. It is a matter of becoming aware and staying out of the sun so much.

To stay safe from the sun you have sun blocking or UPF clothing to help you stay safe. Wear sunscreen on the parts of your body your sun prevention clothing does not cover.

Adding some better sun awareness habits will make fun in the sun stay fun. Not turn to skin cancer as it has for my family.

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