Typically, when people think about umbrellas, they think about protection from the rain. However, if you’re someone who spends a lot of time walking outside, you’ve probably noticed the effect that the sun can have on your skin, mainly if you don’t use a UV umbrella. It’s important to realize that umbrellas, and particularly UV umbrellas, provide an excellent source of protection from the sun.
Sunlight can be much more damaging to your skin than rain. In fact, rainwater, the purest form of soft water, is probably not bad for your skin at all. If you boiled it and bathed in it, it might even be good for your skin. Sunlight, on the other hand, can cause your skin to look more aged, it can cause your skin to burn, and it can cause skin cancer under severe circumstances. Ipso facto, Protection from the sun is much more important than many people realize, and having a UV umbrella can serve as the first line of defense.
Effectiveness aside, UV umbrellas are also a very stylish way to protect yourself from sunlight. Many women in China, the Middle East, and all over the world use umbrellas for protection against the sun, and also to make a fashion statement. All of the colors, shapes, and designs that UV umbrellas come in boost the fashion appeal of owning a UV umbrella.
This article will serve as a detailed analysis of what constitutes a UV umbrella, how UV protection works, why it’s essential to own a UV umbrella, and how to choose the best UV umbrella for you. After reading this article, you should feel confident that you’ll have all of the information that you need to select the perfect UV umbrella for yourself and keep your skin looking young and healthy.
Why Should You Choose a UV Umbrella
There are two primary reasons for choosing to invest in a UV umbrella. Those two reasons include style and protection.
If you live in an area with year-round, bright sunlight, you are at a higher risk of skin cancer. If you spend a lot of time outdoors for work or recreation, you are at risk.
That said, skin cancer is only one of the risks associated with UV exposure. Sunburn and tanning are short-term reactions to overexposure of UV rays and are also signs of skin damage. Long-term exposure to UV radiation can cause wrinkles, aging skin, loss of skin elasticity, liver spots (age spots), and precancerous skin conditions like keratosis (dry, scaly rough patches in your skin).
You can easily avoid these conditions by merely investing in a UV umbrella. Sure, sunscreen can also help. However, sunscreen is natural to forget or run out of at inconvenient times. After spending money on a UV umbrella, you’ll make sure to use it as often as you can. Further, UV umbrellas have been documented to block up to 99% of UV exposure from reaching your skin. It doesn’t get any more effective than that.
Another reason to invest in a UV umbrella is style. I mean sure, you could walk around looking like a lifeguard with sunscreen on your nose. You could go about your day smelling, distinctly, of cocoa butter, coconut oil and jasmine (sunscreen smell). I actually don’t mind the scent, frankly.
However, you’d draw a very different and much more flattering type of attention to yourself if instead, you were showcasing a beautiful new UV umbrella.
UV umbrellas come in all shapes, colors, and sizes. Earlier I mentioned the parasol, a cute, compact umbrella that will protect you from the sun while also boosting your fashion profile. However, large canopy sun umbrellas can also come with beautiful designs.
The larger canopy certainly gives the designer a lot of canvas to work with, and that can often pay off. And who doesn’t love to show off a new beach umbrella? Sometimes, you’ll go to the beach, and it looks like there’s a competition taking place to see who can have the most flamboyant beach umbrella.
So whether you’re looking for protection or a boost to your fashion profile, a UV umbrella is an excellent investment for you. It’ll keep your skin looking younger longer, and it’ll help you stand out in a crowd. You’ll get all of those benefits, plus, you can avoid smelling like sunscreen.
What is a UV Umbrella?
UV stands for ultraviolet. UV umbrellas are umbrellas that are designed to protect you from ultraviolet radiation. Ultraviolet radiation damages the DNA in skin cells, causes people’s skin to look worn out and is a major contributor to skin cancer. While some people choose to frequent tanning beds and absorb a significant amount of UV radiation via that mechanism, most people take in the majority of UV radiation from the sun.
Most people enjoy being outside in the warmth. Many people have to walk outside for work purposes. Either way, ultraviolet radiation shouldn’t make you feel as though you have to be cooped up inside all day. Being outdoors is healthy. The key is the control the amount of exposure that you’re skin has to UV radiation. One of the most effective ways to control that exposure is by investing in a UV umbrella.
UV umbrellas are typically unique types of umbrellas made from a thicker material than a traditional rain umbrella. The thicker material allows UV umbrellas to provide better protection from the sun than a conventional umbrella. Sometimes, UV umbrellas are lightweight, portable, and smaller than rain umbrellas. In some cases, UV umbrellas may even come with an additional anti-UV coating that adds extra protection.
Different types of UV umbrellas include parasols, beach umbrellas, large canopy sun umbrellas, and dual-use umbrellas.
Parasols are the small umbrellas that I referred to earlier. They’re typically easier to transport, they’re lightweight, and they aren’t usually waterproof. Parasols are a great option for people who want something cute, stylish, and who already have a separate umbrella for the rain.
Beach umbrellas are usually the largest types of umbrellas. Beach umbrellas are great for the beach, a patio, or for outdoor cafes and restaurants. You can fit multiple people underneath a beach umbrella which is also convenient. However, beach umbrellas aren’t typically portable. They’re certainly not everyday umbrellas. If you’re a commuter, you should probably consider an alternative. But, if you don’t go outside much aside from beach vacations, then a beach umbrella may be perfect for you. You can even find specific beach umbrellas that come with an extra layer of UV protection.
Large canopy sun umbrellas are similar to parasols in regards to function. They don’t often weigh much, they’re designed to protect you from the sun, and they aren’t usually waterproof. However, large canopy sun umbrellas can provide shade to multiple people. If you have a family, then perhaps a large canopy umbrella would make sense for you. Especially if you and the family like to spend sunny days strolling down Main St.
Dual-use umbrellas give you the best of both worlds. They protect against the rain and the sun. The only argument against dual-use umbrellas is that if an umbrella isn’t manufactured to do one thing exceptionally well, then, arguably, it may do a shoddy job at executing both of its functions.
Usually, you can buy a UV umbrella with a waterproof feature or a regular rain umbrella with an Anti-UV feature. However, again, it’s important to recognize that, while this may save you money, you may also be sacrificing quality to some extent.
How UV Exposure is Measured
Ultraviolet light contains very similar physical properties to visible light except that we can’t see it. Visible light includes all of the colors that we see on the rainbow, and the ultraviolet region starts at the very end of the rainbow, after the violet region, which isn’t visible to us.
Scientifically speaking, UV radiation is electromagnetic radiation. Electromagnetic radiation transmits in patterns of waves, similar to radio signals. Frequency and amplitude are the variables we measure to characterize electromagnetic waves. We define a wavelength as the length of one complete wave cycle. For UV radiation, we measure wavelengths in nanometers (nm).
UV radiation can be broken down into three categories: Tanning Rays (between 350 and 400nm), Burning Rays (between 280 and 315nm), and Dangerous Rays (between 100 and 280nm). The sunlight that reaches the Earth’s surface typically comes in wavelengths between 290 and 400 nm. Ergo, the sunlight that you usually absorb is, at a minimum, tanning your skin, and, at worst, severely burning your skin.
If you’re curious about how UV radiation absorption is measured, the formula goes as follows:
“The intensity of UV radiation is measured in the units of milliwatts per square centimeter (mW/cm2) which is energy per square centimeter received per second. Also, it is measured in the units of millijoules per square centimeter (mJ/cm2), which is energy received per unit area in a given time.
A variety of instruments are commercially available for measuring UV radiation in the laboratory and in the workplace. Specifications and purchasing information can be obtained from suppliers of workplace monitoring equipment.” (CCOHS, 2019)
UV = Ultraviolet
UV is short for “ultraviolet,” as in ultraviolet rays. There are three types of UV rays:
- UVA rays, which cause wrinkling and premature aging.
- UVB rays, which cause sunburn and cataracts.
- UVC rays, which are the strongest, but are blocked from the earth by the ozone layer.
Here’s the main thing: both UVA and UVB rays are dangerous and can cause skin cancer. Kids and adults need protection from both.
UPF = Ultraviolet Protection Factor
UPF stands for “Ultraviolet Protection Factor.” UPF is a universal rating system that measures the sun-blocking effectiveness of clothing and other fabric-made gear.
There are three UPF categories under the U.S. rating system
How to Block UV Rays
There are several ways that you can protect yourself from UV radiation from the sun. You can avoid spending too much time working or hanging out outside, or you can wear protective clothing or hats, you can wear sunscreen, or you can invest in a UV umbrella.
If you work outdoors, then avoiding the sun isn’t really an option. In that case, I’d recommend one of the alternatives listed above, and I’ll describe each option in detail for you.
Protective Clothing: protective clothing can include long sleeve shirts, long pants, hats, and sunglasses. There are specific UV protective clothing options that are designed to protect your skin better than other forms of protective clothing. However, the downside with this option is that when it sunny out, it would stand to reason that the weather might also be warm. While clothing technology has advanced, this might not be the most comfortable solution.
Sunscreen: There are two types of sunscreens; physical sunscreen and chemical sunscreen. Physical sunscreen (which includes zinc oxide and titanium dioxide) deflects UV radiation from your skin. Chemical Sunscreen, on the other hand, absorbs radiation. Sunscreens are giving a rating based on SPF. SPF ratings of 15 typically block 93% of UV radiation. SPF ratings of 30 or higher usually prevent 97% of UV radiation. Sunscreens are an excellent tool to protect yourself. However, sunscreen needs to be continuously reapplied throughout the day which can be a hassle. And for that reason, the next option is almost always the best choice.
UV Umbrella: UV umbrellas are umbrellas to protect you against UV radiation from the sun. They’re usually compact and easily portable, they’re stylish, and they can block up to 99% UV radiation. If you’re looking for something that’s convenient and effective, a UV umbrella is an optimal selection.
Fabrics for UV umbrellas
There are usually two types of fabrics for UV umbrellas.
1) Relying on the coating to achieve a sunscreen effect.
There are coatings inside, such as black coating, color coating, silver coating. The black coating is a new type of UV-resistant fabric that absorbs ultraviolet light by absorption of light and heat, is not easy to fall off and crack, and UPF is also higher. Silver coating is a metal oxide coating that achieves a sunscreen effect by reflection but is easily peeled off and broke. UPF is not as good as vinyl. Sun protection effect, Black coating > color coating > silver coating.
2) Transparent UV
These umbrellas usually use UV-coated PG umbrella cloth, which is light and thin because it has no coating inside. Although it’s thin, the sunscreen effect is not worse than a thick rubberized umbrella. The umbrella UPF value can be customized according to the customer’s requirements.
How to Choose the Best UV Umbrella
When shopping for a UV umbrella, there are several factors that you should take into consideration. For instance, you’ll want to consider the size of the umbrella. Depending on how you plan to use your umbrella, size could matter. You should also keep in mind value. As with any other shopping experience, getting the most bang for your buck should always be a priority. Durability is another important factor.
While you want to be economical in your decision-making process, you also want to make sure that your purchase is going to serve its purpose. And finally, you should consider protection. You’re buying a UV umbrella to protect you from the sun. The worst thing you could do is to buy a UV umbrella and then still end up with sunburn. Let’s examine all of the factors in more detail.
If you’re single, or if you’re planning to use your umbrella on a trip, it’s better to choose a small, travel-sized umbrella or parasol. Further, if you want something that is cute, or easy to carry around regularly, then you might want to invest in a parasol.
However, if you’ve got a family and you prefer to carry around one umbrella at a time, then you might consider the large canopy UV umbrella. Lastly, if you’re merely looking for an umbrella to bring to the beach, I’d recommend beach umbrellas. They tend to be the largest types of umbrellas and are not practical for daily use.
If you live in a very sunny area, or if you’re outdoors all the time, you might want to spend a little more money to make sure that you’re getting the best quality UV umbrella that you can. However, if you don’t go outside much, but you’d still like to have a UV umbrella for when you do venture out, perhaps you don’t need to spend as much money. What’s important is that you understand what kind of quality you’re looking for and that you don’t pay too much or too little accordingly.
The last category bleeds into this category in the sense that you need to be aware of the conditions in which you plan to use your umbrella. If you live in a very windy city, and you buy the cheapest umbrella that you can find, that umbrella might blow inside out at the first large gust of wind. If the weather conditions in your area aren’t particularly harsh, this may not be as important. However, it’s still an essential factor to consider.
Lastly, you want to consider protection. Some UV umbrellas provide additional layers of protection, extra coverage, or features that you want to take into consideration. Again, if you’re someone who spends a lot of time outdoors, UV protection is critical. Make sure that the umbrella that you’re investing in gives you the security that you’re looking for.
Most of us love the outdoors. The purpose of this article was not to sway you from working outside or spending time out in nature. However, the purpose of this article was to inform you of the seriousness of UV radiation and the role that a UV umbrella can play in keeping you safe.
Now that you understand UV umbrella technology and the crucial role that it plays in protecting your skin from UV radiation, I hope that you’ll make sure to invest in the safety and preservation of your skin, and your health at large.
HFumbrella offers a variety of shapes and sizes of UV umbrellas that are stylish, protective, and customizable. Feel free to browse our site and reach out to our marketing team if you have any questions or if you’d like to solicit a quote. For businesses, and large order quantities, we offer special pricing, and you’d be investing in the safety and well-being of your employees. You can also refer to our FAQ section if you have additional questions about other HFumbrella products or services.