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Not All Umbrellas Protect You from Sun Damage—Here’s How to Pick the Right One

By Chandra Pepino For Belo Medical Group on February 8, 2021

It’s really easy to go to any sporting-goods or 99-peso store, pick up a cute umbrella, and head on your merry way. But wait! Not all umbrellas are created alike, and some of them can give you much better protection from harsh ultraviolet (UV) rays. Here’s what you need to know to pick the right umbrella to keep sun damage at bay.

  1. Find yourself a UV umbrella.

“UV parasols, different from many typical umbrellas, have specially treated fabric that protects the skin from UVA and UVB rays,” says Simone Haruko Smith of Bellatory. When buying an umbrella or parasol, be sure to check the tags or labels to see if the umbrella actually provides UV protection.

  1. Choose a black or dark-colored umbrella.

“According to a U.S. study published in JAMA Dermatology, any fully-functioning handheld umbrella can block more than three-quarters of ultraviolet (UV) light on a sunny day,” says a Reuters report. Standard umbrellas usually block between 77-99% of UV radiation. However, black umbrellas were found to have blocked at least 90 percent of rays. The more protection, the better—so get yourself a black one!

  1. Double—scratch that, triple—up on protection.

The truth of the matter is, umbrellas alone aren’t enough to protect you from sun damage. The key is to take a multi-pronged approach. Find UV protection clothing (Uniqlo’s parkas and jackets tend to come with it), wear sunscreen religiously every single day, and wear sunglasses and hats for even more protection. 

Remember, sun damage can happen no matter what the weather outside looks like…and even if you’re indoors. Stay safe, Belo Beauties!

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