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Free Country’s Sun-Savvy Guide: How to Stay Protected and Enjoy Every Outdoor Experience

In honor of Summer Sun Safety Month, discover how to keep skin healthy and still make the most of your warm-weather adventures.

August is here, and with it comes Summer Sun Safety Month—a time to focus on staying safe while enjoying the great outdoors. At Free Country, we understand the allure of sunny days, whether it's lounging on the beach, hiking through scenic trails or having a backyard family BBQ. We also recognize the importance of protecting your skin from harmful UV rays, but you don’t have to sacrifice fun in the sun, we promise! It’s possible to keep your skin glowing and healthy while still enjoying the warmth of the season (while you still can) and without worries.

SPF: Your First Line of Defense
Sunscreen should be a non-negotiable part of your daily routine, even on cloudy days. Harmful UV rays can still penetrate through overcast skies, putting your skin at risk. Opt for broad-spectrum sunscreens with an SPF of 30 or higher, and don’t skimp on the stuff! Cover your body generously with about a shot glass-sized amount and reapply every two hours, especially if you're sweating or swimming. Sunscreen not only protects against skin cancer, but it’s also scientifically proven to reduce sun damage, wrinkles, age spots and signs of aging—so what are you waiting for? Slather up!

Dress Smart for the Sun
Clothing plays a vital role in shielding your skin from sun damage. Look for pieces with built-in sun protection, such as UPF apparel. Free Country's UPF collection, rated at 50+, ensures that over 98% of harmful UV radiation is blocked, providing superior protection compared to regular garments. Choose lightweight and breathable sun shirts, shorts, skirts or UPF swimwear to cover-up safely and keep comfortably cool (and looking good) all day long.

Accessorize for Extra Protection
Before soaking in that vitamin D, don't forget to add some sun-safety accessories to your ensemble—they provide an additional layer of defense, and can also be seriously stylish. Your head and face are more prone to skin cancer than the rest of your body, so keep them covered with a wide-brim hat. It’ll keep you cooler during those scorching-hot days, while also helping to prevent sun damage and unwanted wrinkles. Don’t forget to protect your peepers: UV rays can damage your eyes, too. Opticians recommend wearing sunglasses with 100% UV protection, no matter the weather forecast (remember: UV rays go right through the clouds!).

Be Shady
It may seem simple, but seeking shade is an easy and practical form of sun protection that you can find nearly everywhere. Shade can significantly reduce UV exposure and decrease the risk of sunburn and skin damage. Finding shelter under trees, umbrellas or awnings provides a much-needed respite for your skin, plus it offers a cool, comfortable space to enjoy the fresh air. If it’s not possible to take cover, then timing is key when it comes to embracing the sunshine responsibly. Try to plan your alfresco activities during the early morning or late afternoon when the sun's rays are less intense. No matter where you end up this August, just be sure to soak up the sun safely for a happy and healthy end-of-season summer to remember.