Creative Ways to Shield the Sun

It’s no secret that soaking in too many of the sun’s harmful rays is extremely dangerous for anyone’s skin- but are you sick of constantly bathing yourself in sunscreen? Do you look for any possible way to avoid the sticky, white lotion that only lasts for a few hours? As a fair-skinned young woman, I am extremely cautious when it comes to protecting my skin. This constant worry over sunburn, skin cancer and the inconvenience of sunscreen even keeps me from enjoying myself outside on summer vacation. Here are a few creative ways to protect your skin, without relying solely on sunscreen to keep you safe. 

1.    Don’t be afraid to accessorize! Cute summer add-ons can do more than compliment your outfit. For a summer look straight off the runway, break out your mom’s vintage fedora hat, like this one from Forever 21 (only $10.80). To impress the men in your life, rock a fitted hat with your favorite sports team’s logo. If you want to channel your inner country-music star, try a cowboy hat. Make your own shade with any hat and you are sure to capture attention and avoid an awkward sunglasses-shaped tan line.

2.    Avoid the sun’s strongest rays. Make your outdoor plans for early in the morning or after the sun goes down. Summer vacation can be the perfect time to finally enjoy a morning sunrise, spark a summer romance on a midnight walk on the beach, or have friends over for an outdoor barbeque or bonfire. In my opinion, the beach is more enjoyable at night- away from the crowds and the blistering sand.

3.    Invest in 100% UV protection sunglasses. Great neon shades, like these from American Eagle for only $15.50, can protect your eyes and the sensitive areas of skin close to them.

4.    Wear sun protective clothing. Hats aren’t the only piece of clothing you can wear to protect your skin! Great beach and pool-friendly pieces include sarongs, sundresses, swimsuit cover-ups, cute tanks, jean cut-offs and summer scarves. All of these light pieces can be layered or worn separately and can add a layer of protection over your swimsuit.

5.    Maintain a healthy glow with tinted moisturizers and lotions. My favorite self-tanning lotion is the Jergens Natural Glow Healthy Complexion line (available at any drugstore). When you apply the lotion consistently for one to two weeks, your skin takes on a natural-looking, healthy glow. Avoid the cheap, fast-acting products that claim dramatic results and stick to a slow progression to bronzed beauty.

6.    Sneak in a little SPF every day. Now that you have more time in the morning to primp and get yourself ready for the day, try applying a daily moisturizer with SPF. Not only will it keep your skin smooth and healthy, but it will also give you the same protection as sunscreen without the sticky aftermath. Try Aveeno Positively Radiant (available at any drugstore) for proven results. It’s also important to protect your lips! Keep applying chap stick or lip-gloss with SPF throughout the day to keep your lips looking great.

By Meaghan O’Connor | Photos:,,,

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