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How to Protect Yourself from Sun Rays With An Umbrella

Ultraviolet radiation (UVR) is an electromagnetic wave. It comes from the sun and travels to the surface of the Earth. While UVR is vital to human (it provides us with the essential vitamin, vitamin D), but it can also cause harm especially to the eye and skin such as burn, hyperpigmentation, photoaging skin, keratoconjunctivitis, stimulation of photodermatoses and cutaneous cancer.

This is why we need different methods of protection from the harmful and potentially damaging sun rays. The types of protection can be split into the two categories: Chemical protection (sunscreen) and Physical protection such as using hats, garments, sunglasses.

Umbrellas are also a great method of protection from the sun and one of the ways to protect yourself from UVR due to its convenience, availability as well as its ability to protect one from rain. However, there are only few studies on UVR protection efficacy of different types of umbrellas and no clear conclusions can be drawn.

A new study conducted by Vejakupta et al aimed to evaluate UVR photoprotection efficacies of umbrellas with different canvases (umbrellas with UVR-filter coating on the inner surface of the canvas, umbrellas with UVR-filter coating on the outer surface of the canvas and umbrellas with plain canvas) as well as umbrellas with different diameters (112 cm, 122 cm and 152 cm).

The final results show that all types of umbrellas do provide UVR photo protection efficacy. The study shows that umbrellas with different canvas material including both the UV-filter coating and different diameter of umbrellas could effectively protect the user from UVR without significant group difference in this study.

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Vejakupta, K., & Udompataikul, M. (2014). Umbrella with Ultraviolet Radiation Protection Journal of Cosmetics, Dermatological Sciences and Applications, 04 (04), 228-233 DOI: 10.4236/jcdsa.2014.44031