SPF

The Sun Protection Factor (SPF) refers to the increased time it takes you to get sunburnt.

It's necessary to reapply sunscreen every two hours, because water, sweat and contact with a towel or clothing remove the coating on your skin.

The highest claimable SPF rating in Australia is 50+ which means it can block 98% of the sun's rays. A sunscreen with SPF 30+ will block 96.7%. Either one will provide protection if applied properly and if you're only going to be in the sun for a short period. Neither is as effective as a UPF 50+ rash top.

UPF

The ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) is for clothing.  A shirt with a UPF of 20 allows only one twentieth of the UVR through to your skin. UPF ratings go up to 50, and a fabric with a rating higher than 50 is labelled as UPF 50+.

Different fabrics have different UVR-absorbing properties: generally, the thicker the fabric, the tighter the weave and the darker the colour, the more UVR that is blocked.

Suncheeters are made from UPF50+ material, offering the maximum sun protection.

October 20, 2021 — Terry Dear

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