We all love heading out into the sun and spending time near the water, whether that is the beach or the pool or even a waterpark. However, with time out on the water comes a potential danger, which is the sun. While a bit of sunshine is good for the body and for the soul, too much can be damaging with immediate results being a sunburn and dehydration, and long-term effects potentially being skin cancer. While enjoying time outside in the summer is a must, so is having protective gear to protect you from the powerful UV rays of the sun. We've put together a list of must-have sun protection gear so you're out by the water safely.

Why is it Important?

Before we dive into what you need, let's first go into why it's important. Perhaps you're thinking that you've been out in the sun your whole life and tan easily so it's not a big deal for you to go out without sunscreen and other sun protection. That may be the case that your skin does tan easily, allowing you to enjoy the sun without as much of a burn, at least that you can see. However, while you may not be able to see the damage, it's there, and you could be helping a dangerous form of skin cancer to grow which may not even show up for years. Every sunburn that you get sends you closer to potentially having to battle that or deal with those issues, not to mention the premature aging that may cause your skin to appear much older than you are.

On the other side of that, when you are out in the sun without sun protection, you likely will get dehydrated faster than if your skin is covered and you have some shade to help keep you cool. While dehydration may seem like a mild inconvenience, it can lead to a variety of issues. Heat stroke and heat exhaustion can develop from dehydration, as can certain infections, not to mention the unpleasant feelings of dehydration which can include mental fog and headaches.

Finally, you need to watch out for sun poisoning. Sun poisoning is not a poison so to speak, but it occurs after too much exposure to the sun. You may get symptoms such as skin blistering, headache, fever, nausea, dizziness, and dehydration. Just as you would treat a sunburn, you'd want to treat sun poisoning the same way by getting out of the sun, taking a cool shower, drinking extra water, and using aloe vera gel to help with the sunburn.

The easiest way to prevent all of these potential issues is to use the proper sun protection and limit your time out in the rays by having an area of shade that you can go to. That's why sun protection is so important, to keep yourself and your skin healthy so you can enjoy time in the sun for years to come.

Must-Have Gear

Now that you know the why of this gear, let's get into just what you'll need to keep yourself safe from dangerous UV rays.

  • Sunscreen. This is a must, whether you are going out to enjoy a waterpark or even just heading out for some errands. During the summer especially, make sure that your face and any uncovered skin have some sunscreen covering it. This will prevent you from getting sunburns from just doing some errands. If you are going in the water, make sure that you reapply your sunscreen and apply it 15-20 minutes before you go in the water, so it has time to absorb and not wash off.
  • Hats. A wide brimmed hat or a straw hat is perfect for a day when you are lounging by the pool or the shore. This will help protect the delicate skin on your face and even your head and ears from the sun's rays. We don't always think about our scalp or our ears when we are applying sunscreen or even as an area that could get burned, but they get plenty of exposure, leading to potential issues later on.
  • Swimwear that provides protection. Your swimsuit should do more than just look cute, it should protect your skin too, which is why our swimwear offers UV 50+ protection. Not only does clothing protect your skin by covering it from the sun, but with the extra sun protection, it will be protected from fading, as well as prevent even more rays from reaching your skin.
  • Rash guard. If you are looking for even more coverage or plan on being out in the sun for hours, a rash guard is a great option. This will offer more skin coverage, allowing you to be out for longer without worrying about burning your skin.

With these few items, you can safely enjoy a day in the sun without worrying about too much sun exposure.