Think you’re immune to the sun? Well, unless you’re from a place near the equator, you’re most likely not. Odds are, the UV Index is higher on Oahu, Hawaii than where you’re from. Be sure to grab that sun block if you’re going to be outdoors all day. Hawaii tends to have sunny weather on the regular. Don’t start your vacation off on the wrong foot by lying in your hotel bed for the first three days. Severe sun burn can lead to blisters, heat stroke, and later on down the line, potential skin cancer.
Oahu sun safety tips:
1. Apply sunscreen a half hour beforehand. Don’t wait till you’re already out on the beach. By then, you’re already being exposed to harmful UV rays. Always use a broad spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher, preferably one that’s waterproof if you’re going to be swimming.
2. None are truly waterproof, you still need to reapply.
3. Use shade as your ally. Yes. The beach is all about achieving that epic tan to make your friends jealous upon your return. You can do that, but it doesn’t hurt to seek out some shade particularly during the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. when the sun is at its harshest. A wide brimmed hat is also a good idea or an umbrella and some sunglasses. Did you know that sand and water can reflect up to 85 percent of the sun’s rays?
4. Don’t use sunscreen on babies under six months old. It’s important to keep them in the shade. Dress children in UV protective clothing.
5. A good rule of thumb is to apply 1 ounce of sunscreen to the skin a half hour before heading outside. That’s about two tablespoons. Most people, according to studies, use less than half of that amount? That’s simply not enough for the average person. Don’t hesitate to lather that stuff on.
6. Re-apply sunscreen about every two hours, or more frequently if you’ve spent a lot of time in the water or have toweled off frequently.
7. Ask a friend or check for yourself if you look like you’re burning. If so, apply more sunscreen, cover up, and chill in the shade. (one in five Americans will get some type of skin cancer at some point in their lives).
8. Be diligent about sun safety even when not touring the beaches. Hiking, shark cage diving, and even walking around sightseeing can earn you a burn. For some, even on a cloudy day.
9. Check the expiration date of your sunscreen. Buy a new bottle to ensure optimal protection and coverage if expired.