Sun Preparation


The sun plays a vital role in our lives. A sunny day lifts our mood and makes us want to get outdoors. Some exposure to the sun is essential for our health. As our primary source of Vitamin D, it helps keep our bones strong and healthy, but too much can cause damage including skin ageing, skin cancer and eye disease.

Sun sensitivity varies. If you have light skin, fair or red hair, blue or green eyes, moles or freckles, then you will probably burn easily. If your skin is darker, your risk of sunburn and skin cancer will be lower, but you still need to take care.

5 Ways to Enjoy the Sun Without the Risk

#1. Stay In

    Stay out of the sun when it’s at its most intense. In the UK, that is between 11 am and 3 pm from April to September, but in other countries, this may differ. Try to plan time outside in the morning and late afternoon and stay indoors in between. If you can’t avoid being outdoors, look for somewhere shady to get out of the sun for a while.

    #2. Cover Up

      When you are out in the sun, wear loose, light-coloured clothing that covers your arms and legs. Sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat are also advisable.

      #3. Check the UV Index

        The UV Index indicates the strength of the sun and when the risk of getting a sunburn is at its highest. The higher the value, the greater the risk. On the UV scale, 1-2 is low-risk, 3-5 moderate, 6-7 high and 8-9 very high. The UV Index only has to reach level 3 for there to be a risk of sunburn. 

        You can check the UV Index at or look out for warnings on news and weather bulletins.



        #4. Use Sunscreen

          From the beginning of April to the end of September, the sun in the UK is strong enough to cause sunburn. That is regardless of how hot or cloudy it is. If the UV Index is 3 or above, you should think about using sunscreen.

          Use a sunscreen of at least SPF15 and reapply every two hours. If you’re relying on what’s left over from last year, check the use-by date. Water-resistant sunscreen is a better option if you’re likely to get wet or sweat a lot.

          #5. Drink Plenty of Water

            Spending too long in the sun without drinking enough water can make you dehydrated. Drinking a lot of alcohol or exercising hard on a hot day can make it worse. If you start to feel ill or your pee is dark and smelly, you could be dehydrated. You can avoid reaching this point if you drink water regularly and increase your intake when you are sweating a lot.


            With a little care and preparation, making the most of the summer sun can be a joyful experience and not a painful one.