UV Skinz's CEO and Founder Rhonda Sparks Talks About the Dangers of UV Radiation
I have a complex relationship with the sun, as do most of us who are aware of what too much-unprotected sun exposure can do to our bodies. While it can feel warm and comforting, unprotected sun exposure can damage your skin and lead to skin cancer over time.
Because of this, it is important to understand what UV rays are, how they affect us, and how we can live sun-safe alongside them, which is what we're going to go over today.
What Are the Three Types of UV Radiation?
There are 3 types of UV radiation, UVA, UVB, and UVC.
While UVC is the most damaging UV ray, it is completely filtered by the atmosphere and does not reach the earth’s surface.
The rays you need to worry about are UVA and UVB. Both UVA and UVB penetrate the basal layer of the epidermis–where most skin cancers occur–and play an important role in conditions like premature skin aging, eye damage (including cataracts), basal cell carcinoma, and even melanoma.
UV radiation is invisible to the naked eye, making it easy to forget to be aware of its presence. Here are some facts about UVA and UVB rays you should know about:
- UVA rays account for 95% of the UV radiation that reaches the earth’s surface.
- Although less powerful than UVB rays, UVA rays are 30-50 times more prevalent.
- UVA radiation is the dominant tanning ray (a tan is a direct result of injury to our skin’s DNA).
- UVA radiation has been linked to premature aging, wrinkles, and sunspots.
- UVB radiation, also known as the “burning rays” are the chief cause of sunburns.
- UVB rays play a role in the development of skin cancer, as well as suppression of the immune system.
- A positive effect of UVB exposure is that it prompts the making of vitamin D. Another way to receive Vitamin D naturally without the risk of sun damage is through eating foods such as salmon, trout, tuna, fortified milk, and certain mushrooms.
- The most significant amount of UVB rays hit the United States from April to October between 10 AM and 4 PM (although you can develop damage year-round).
*Please see the infographic below for more on UV radiation.
Source: Skin Cancer Foundation
How to Stay Safe and Protected from UV Rays
The best ways to stay safe from the sun's UVA and UVB rays are to protect your skin with broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 and to wear UPF clothing and swimwear. Find UPF swimwear and clothing with a UPF rating of 50, which is the highest and best rating for UV protection. Here are some suggestions to get you started:
- UPF 50+ sun hats with a wide brim to protect your face.
- UPF 50+ long-sleeve swim shirts for comprehensive coverage under the sun.
- UPF 50+ long-sleeve one-piece swimsuits for babies.
- UPF 50+ beach cover-ups.
UV Skinz is proud to make UPF 50+ swimwear and clothing for the entire family. Shop our bestsellers today and stay sun-safe from UV radiation.