Seven of the best sun protectors for outdoor fitness fans
Summer’s made for getting active in the elements — but don’t forget to take care of your skin. Abi Jackson rounds up some of this season’s top picks
Counting down the days to get outdoors this summer? Whether it's hiking in the hills, games in the park, or even a spot of water sports, getting outside and being active among nature when the sun's out is one of the season's biggest joys.
Spending hours under those UV rays, however, means keeping your skin protected is vital. Skin cancer is a reality none of us can afford to ignore, plus nothing puts a dampener on summer fun like a nasty sunburn - so cover up and slap on the SPF.
Here are seven of our top sun-protection picks for getting active outdoors this summer:
1. Riemann P20 Seriously Reliable Suncare SPF50, 150ml, currently reduced to £19.96 from £24.95 (Boots)
Sun lotions have come a long way in recent years - there's no need to slap on sticky gloop any more - and this new P20 spray-on formula is a real winner for long weekend hikes or beach and park games. Super-easy to apply, the fragrance-free, transparent, lightweight liquid instantly sinks in and is active in just 15 minutes, providing up to 10 hours of broad-spectrum UVA and UVB protection. Better still, it comes with the highest classification currently available for water-resistance, so whether you're working up a sweat, or taking a quick dunk in an inviting lake, it's all good.
2. BUFF Pack Bike Cap, £24.50 (buffwear.com)
Blue skies beg for long days on the bike - just don't forget to kit yourself out with everything you need to keep glare from your eyes and care for your skin. BUFF does a cool range of cycling caps; you can squish them up to fit in tight pockets when not in use, they're super-breathable, provide 97.5% UV protection, and have an inner sweatband to help stop those beads of perspiration trickling into your eyes.
3 & 4. Dakine Persuasive Snug Fit Long Sleeve Rashguard - Women's, £50, and matching Surf Short, £40 (dakine.com)
If you want to keep covered up on the beach or at the lake, a long-sleeve rashguard is just the ticket. These, from Dakine's new range, offer UPF 50+ sun protection, while ergonomic panels and the snug lightweight fit promise comfort, protection from chafing and easy movement.
5. Solero Lip Protection Stick SPF50+, £3 (LloydsPharmacy stores)
A backpack or bumbag essential whenever you hit those sunny trails, a good SPF-packed lip balm will keep those smackers smooth and hydrated, and protected from sun damage. This Solero one guards against UVA and UVB, and is water-resistant - plus, it's a bargain to boot.
6. BUFF High UV Protection Accessory - Calyx Salmon Rose, £16.50 (buffwear.com)
Necks are often the first to take a beating when we're out under the rays all day, but BUFF's high UV protection neckwear range can remedy that. As well as shielding skin from the sun, the Coolmax Extreme material's designed to help keep you cool and wick away moisture 'faster than any other fabric'. You can dunk it in cold water for a quick drench too, and it's mega-versatile; the tubular design can be worn as a neckerchief, beanie, bandana or to tie up your hair - and it comes in a huge choice of patterns.
7. Dakine Intermission Loose Fit Short Sleeve Rashguard, £42 (dakine.com)
Want all the hi-tech protection but with casual, everyday styling? This loose-fit T-shirt works in and out of the water, and is made with fast-drying, moisture-wicking Channel Flow Lite material, which also promises UPF 50+ sun protection. Designed for surfers and mountain bikers alike, it comes in a choice of three colourways/designs.