Summer Sun Safety Tips

As we prepare to enjoy the warmer weather and longer days, knowing how to protect yourself from the sun’s rays should be a priority. Ultraviolet (UV) radiation exposure increases the risk of skin cancer and Bermuda’s UV index is at its highest from March to October, so it’s important to brush up on your sun safety.

Amber Clarke, Wellness Coordinator at Argus, shares some tips on how to protect your skin from the sun while still enjoying the season.


There are a lot of reasons to celebrate the sunshine. In addition to being the best source of Vitamin D – essential for maintaining strong and healthy bones, sunlight in reasonable doses boosts natural immunity, promotes skin growth and healing, and stimulates the “happy” hormone (serotonin), contributing to an overall sense of well-being. The key is to be cautious while out in the sun and not block it out completely.

Here are some of the things I do in the summer to protect my glow:

  1. Choose the right sunscreen for your skin type and tone. It’s a common misconception that darker skin tones don’t require sunscreen. Don’t make this mistake! No matter what your skin type or tone, make sure you’re using a broad-spectrum formula that protects against both UVA and UVB rays. Anything over Sun Protection Factor (SPF) 30+ should do. If you’re heading out to the beach to swim, make sure you pack a water-resistant sunscreen. And always remember to check the expiration date, as most sunscreens last around six months.

  2. Apply sunscreen early and often. Wearing sunscreen is one of the best ways to protect yourself against skin cancer and is an important healthy habit. Make sure you’re applying enough sunscreen, taking special care to include sensitive areas. Apply generous amounts of sunscreen to the face, body, ears, scalp and back of the neck at least 20 minutes ahead of sun exposure and reapply every two hours, especially after physical activities. And don't forget to protect your lips with a lipstick or lip balm with UVA and UVB protection.

  3. Watch the weather and dress accordingly. Don't be fooled by cloudy days. UV rays can still reach your skin even when you can't see or feel the sun. UV rays can also reflect off water and cause damage even during overcast weather. In addition to sunscreen, wearing a hat to protect your face, dressing in light layers of clothing, and staying in shaded areas during peak sunshine hours (10 a.m. to 3 p.m.) are just a few things you can do while still enjoying the outdoors and getting a healthy dose of Vitamin D.

Recognising skin cancer and reducing your risk

Anyone can be diagnosed with skin cancer, regardless of colour, age, or gender. Globally, skin cancer is the most common form of cancer, but when caught early, it’s highly treatable.

Regularly checking your skin can help with early detection, which is key for protecting against aggressive skin cancers like melanoma.

One simple way to remember the common characteristics of melanoma is to use the ABCDE method – asymmetry, border, color, diameter and evolving.

If you notice anything unusual, don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor or ask for a referral to a dermatologist for an expert opinion.

For more information on staying sun safe, visit Bermuda Cancer and Health website here.

DISCLAIMER: The content in this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.