Cover Your Bases with These Sun Essentials

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When the summer weather in Michigan finally arrives, it's hard not to want to take advantage of enjoying every opportunity we have to be out in the sun. However, there are some essential steps to take ahead of time to ensure you're protected and your fun in the sun stays exactly that.

Keep your face protected from too much sun by choosing a hat that's not only going to keep you covered, but also make you still feel like yourself in the process. Thankfully, you've got options. Live your best life with a classy brimmed hat that channels 1998 Parent Trap remake Meredith Blake energy; keep it simple with a baseball cap; get a little trendy with a funky bucket hat; or look like you're ready to hit the tennis court with a sporty visor (yes, they're back). Either way, protect your face (this includes wearing sunglasses).

Every skincare professional will tell you: Sunscreen should be worn every day, rain or shine, sunny or cloudy. Also learn which sunscreens are reef safe and why it's important! According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, you should opt for sunscreen that's at least SPF 30 for day-to-day use, and SPF 60 for spending lots of time outdoors. Don't forget a lip balm with SPF! They also recommend that sunscreen should generally be reapplied every two hours, especially after swimming or sweating. And no, SPF built into your makeup doesn't count.

You can't go wrong with a good water bottle, especially one that's insulated to keep your drink nice and cool for hours on end. If you're taking a break from water for something a little stronger, koozies are a must. Take it from me: insualted koozies, especially, are life changing. And of course, if the kids are coming along, keep plenty of tasty and hydrating drinks at the ready. We won't tell if you sneak a Capri Sun or two for yourself. On the move? Water bottle bags are all the rage right now, at a variety of cost points. Now, you've got no excuse not to be at peak hydration!

Whether it's for daily wear or for poolside, oversized button ups in flowy or gauzy fabrics are super on trend right now. Pick one up in a basic neutral (black, white, khaki) and another in your favorite seasonal color. Not only are they super easy to throw over a swimsuit, they're also absolutely effortless looking and comfortable. Of course, UPF clothing is also always an option (also perfect for young kids).

Don't forget a good beach tote! Or if you're anything like me and always forget, keep a collapsible one in your car so you're always prepared.

This should go without saying, but if you spend time outside swimming, lounging by the pool or catching some rays by the beach, don't let the accumulated dirt and oil sit on your skin for longer than it needs to. This could lead to clogged pores and more. If you accidentally got a little too toasty from your time in the sun, gently wash off and apply some Aloe Vera gel (best kept in the fridge for a great cooling effect), following up with some after sun lotion. Forgo any chemical exfoliants you may use in your regular skincare routine until your skin is less sensitive.

Written by Sarah Suydam, Managing Editor for West Michigan Woman.


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