Have fun and stay sun smart

With 5 million cases treated every year in the U.S., skin cancer is all too common. And even though skin cancer has become one of the most common forms of cancer, it is also one of the easiest to avoid—you just need to be smart about the sun. Here are our tips for staying sun smart this summer:

Know the numbers

Pay close attention to the sun protection factor (SPF) levels on your sunscreen bottle. Aim for an SPF 30 and above for the best protection. Even those with a dark complexion should use SPF 30 and above sunscreen—just because you don’t sunburn easily doesn’t mean the sun isn’t doing damage to your skin.

Reapply regularly

One squirt of the bottle won’t keep you burn-free the entire time you’re outside. Whether it’s through sweating or swimming, your sunscreen wears off. In order to prevent sun damage, make sure you’re reapplying every two hours. Your skin will thank you later.

Not just a bottle

Believe it or not, there are more ways to stay sun smart than just squeezing sunscreen out of a bottle. Many clothing companies produce ultraviolet protection factor (UPF)-based shirts that can be worn in place of sunscreen. These products are great for those with more sun-sensitive skin, and can help anyone avoid nasty sunburns. Even regular clothes protect against sun damage—think long sleeves and hats.

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