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Sun Protection and Outdoor life

Forums Cutaneous Melanoma Community Sun Protection and Outdoor life

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      I’ve lead an active outdoor life up until now, and am looking for ways to continue that as much as possible.  I’m looking at daily and active sunscreen, UPF clothing and hat practices I can adopt (e.g. water activities before 10AM or after 3:30 PM).  

      Only I can turn a cancer diagnosis into a shopping activity   🙂

      i couldn’t find recommendations for protection on this site   Am I missing it?

      i found this on skin

      You can select sunscreen or clothing etc and look for recommendations   Does the group think this is a good resource? 

      Do you have recommendations for clothing that’s breathable?  Their suggestions?


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          Whoops! This is Lucy.  I must have it anonymous post by accident.  I can’t type on my iPAD.  


            Hi Lucy,

            I hate typing in iPads too and try to avoid it whenever possible. LOL

            Coolibar has really nice clothing and swimwear. They also sell fitness attire, which should be more breathable than their swimwear. The nurse I work with at Johns Hopkins turned me on to Coolibar.

            Lands End has nice UPF 50 swimwear. The UPF 50 swim shirts are called rash guards on their web site. They also sell swim shorts and skirted capris that are UPF 50.

            Most of the UPF 50 swim tops do not have built in bras. You need to go to either Walmart or Kohls and get yourself a quick dry sports bra to wear underneath.

            I've bought swimwear and clothing from both Coolibar and Lands End and have been happy with my purchases. Quality-wise Coolibar has a bit of an edge over Lands End but both are fine.

            UV Skinz has some nice outfits but I've never bought anything from them so I can't speak for their quality. 

            Hats are something I don't like to buy on line because I want to see how they look on me before I make my purchase. Golf shops are good places to shop for sun hats. And if the women's hats don't appeal to you, don't be shy about checking out the men's hats. Golf shops will also have UPF clothing.

            As far as swim hats go, I go as cheap as possible for that and just make sure my face, neck and ears have adequate sunscreen on them. My goal for that is to keep the top of my scalp from burning when I'm in the water and even a baseball cap will suffice for that.



              For bicycling I like the Solumbra cycle shirt.


                Hi, I use a wide brim visor for cycling. It looks a little goofy, but does a good job.




                    Coolibar's are expensive, yes. But they have some really good sales. Never heard of Sunsoaked — will have to check them out. 🙂


                      I checked out the Sunsoaked web site and they were VERY expensive! Nice swim attire, though. 


                      I've tried plenty of different hats, and don't wear most of them because they blow off in the wind. A company called "Shelta" makes a great boonie-style hat which is absolutely windproof and well-suited to time on the water.

                      Best of luck !

                      Danielle T
                        All of these suggestions are great. The only thing I’d add is I start my day with sun screen – as soon as I’m out of my morning shower. I feel it helps vs waiting once you are already outside.
                        I also try to seek shade as much as possible but try not to feel guilty if I am in the sun doing an activity I love.
                        this is definitely personal preference, but if being pale in the summer causes you discomfort you could try a self tanning lotion or spray.
                        My biggest melanoma problem area is my back so I try to always wear a sun shirt. I like both Coolio and Lands end.
                          All great suggestions noted and I’ve used Coolibar and others mentioned.  Many more brands, style choices and price points than there were in years past.  You may want to check out Columbia, Eddie Bauer, Duluth Trading, LL Bean as they all make UPF 50 /sun-safe shirts (button up/collared) along with T-shirts.  Columbia – esp their outlet stores and/or online sites – offer great sales.   If I’m going to be outside for a while I also put on a pair of light-weight (not hot to wear as they are ultra thin) Columbia brand UPF/sun safe fingerless gloves.  I used these trekking around Disney in the Florida sun.   I have a wide-brimmed Tilley (brand) hat that I wear – gives shade over back of neck.  Happy shopping!
                          Chris R
                            Last summer we went to Hawaii. Talk about sun anxiety. I purchased a number of UPF 50 long sleeve shirts on Amazon. Typically in the $20 each for what I would describe as long sleeve T shirts. The fabric was basically the cool breathing type. They worked great in and out of the water. My favorite hats are wide brim hats by Oregon Research, as I like the shape and I have a Panama Jack that is a bit more formal.

                            Also from Amazon I order Alba Botanica Sensitive Mineral Sunscreen SPF30. It includes 14.5% zinc oxide. It rubs in nicely and does not leave you with too much of a ghostly look.

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