I'm gearing up for summer. Bright sunshine is a welcome relief after the cold and snowy winter. My boots are packed away and now it's time for swimsuits and shorts.
I love being outdoors, especially at the beach. I have fond memories of going to Long Beach, N.Y. My family rented a flat there each July and August. Who knew from SPF during the 60s? My mom used to slather greasy orange Bain de Soleil over her body and my dad's too. Sometimes my sister N would sit with a metallic reflector near her face to catch more rays.
Sadly, later in life my mom ended up with melanoma and had to have surgery on her leg. That's why I try to cover up when in the sun and wear sunscreen with SPF 50+, especially on my face. I also get regular checkups at the dermatologist.
Since I have to be extra careful when in the sun, I was interested to learn about Coolibar sun protective clothing. Coolibar offers a variety of stylish activewear made with UPF 50+ fabrics that block 98 percent of the sun's UVA and UVB radiation.
Because I have a reputation as a 50-plus fashionista, Coolibar sent me some complimentary samples.* I packed two of the items when I traveled to St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, last week for my niece's wedding. I wore a cute Antigua tunic over my bathing suit at the pool and a basic tank with my capris while walking around town. I plan to take the zip-up jacket with me this weekend when I go biking near my condo at the Jersey shore.
Skin-Smart Tips for Summer
In honor of May's Skin Cancer Awareness Month, Coolibar has partnered with the American Cancer Society to create a #SkinSmart campaign aimed at sharing tips on how to keep skin protected from UV exposure:
- Use sunscreen of at least SPF 30 and reapply every two hours, especially after swimming and lots of sweating. (Have to remind my boyfriend L and my son D about the importance of sunscreen. They aren't as faithful about applying as I am.)
- T-shirts do not block UV rays! Wear clothing with a UV protection factor of 50. (You mean all those years my mom told me to put on a T-shirt when I was getting red at the beach it really didn't make a difference? Wish I could turn back the clock 50 years and reapply sunscreen!)
- Wear a hat! For every inch of brim, you reduce your risk of skin cancer 10 percent. (My son D and daughter A were making fun of my white floppy hat at the pool this weekend. They said I looked like I was wearing a baby's hat. I'll show them! I'm going to go get a bigger brimmed hat now that I know these risk factors.)
- Take regular breaks from the sun between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when UV rays are strongest. Set your phone alarm to remind you. (Ooh, ooh, ooh, this is a challenge. I usually go to the beach around 2 p.m., so I better take lots of sun protective gear. Hope my boyfriend L—aka cabana boy L—can carry everything.)
Bring your own. Sunscreen prices peak at resorts and parks, and some don't sell sunscreen. (Here are the best sunscreens according to Consumer Reports.)
A Sweet Deal
To celebrate its mission to eliminate cancer, Coolibar is giving the American Cancer Society $1 for EVERY order placed at Coolibar.com during the month of May—up to a $25,000 donation! To sweeten the deal, Coolibar has offered a special code, ACS15, which gives a 15 percent discount on all orders. Hurry, the offer ends soon!
*Disclosure of Material Connection: Coolibar provided me with complimentary clothing. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. My opinions on the clothing are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive sentiments toward Coolibar or their clothing.
This post originally appeared on aboomerslifeafter50.com.