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  • Writer's pictureginaelisebradbury

A Pale Girl's Summer Survival Guide; Sun Protection for Pale Skin

Bring out the big hats and SPF 50 with style

Temperatures have been soaring globally this summer. News headlines about the impact of global warming on our climate are alarming. Raising temperatures are a concerning and multifaceted issue, but I want to focus this post on one area of concern: skin protection. As someone with extremely pale skin and light eyes, the need to protect myself against the sun is an issue I can't ignore. I even had to have a section of skin removed from my leg (a mole and the surrounding area) as a teenager due to precancerous tissue. Yes, it's not a pleasant story, but protection against the sun really is very important.

An early modelling shot of Marilyn Monroe on a beach with pale skin, dark blonde hair and red lipstick.
An early modelling shot of Marilyn Monroe on a beach. Sunset Boulevard/Corbis. Getty Images via

Luckily, there are a plethora of high SPF products, many of which are cruelty-free and vegan, available today. Knowledge of sun damage has increased amongst society. Gone are the days of 1980's tanning oil ads. Whilst this is the case, there are always more sun protection tips to learn and incorporate into your routine. Also, it's important to note that while these sun protecting products are an essential for pale skin care, considering sun protection for all skin types is important. Below: I've chosen standout sun protection products to help you enjoy those hot and humid days.

When choosing clothing for skin coverage on a hot day, there are a number of factors to consider. Certain colours and materials are more resistant to UV rays. Dark and bright colours offer better sun protection than light colours. This is because dark and bright colours absorb UV rays instead of allowing them to penetrate your skin. However, wearing black clothing on a hot day can be extremely uncomfortable. In my own experience, I wore a black t-shirt to a concert last summer, and I bought a light-coloured tee from a merchandise stall just to cool down. In terms of materials that are better at reflecting UV rays, according to, you may want to choose synthetic fibres, silks, denim, canvas and unbleached cotton.

Another valuable piece of advice, offered by, is to hold material up to the light. The more transparent it looks when doing this, the less UV protection it is likely to offer. Ultimately, choosing your clothing in the summer comes down to considering your own needs and preferences while balancing protection with comfort. As someone with pale skin, I prefer to wear a midi or maxi dress for greater coverage:

Please let me know in the comments of any products/pieces of advice that keep you feeling comfortable and safe on sunny days. I am by no means an expert in sun protection, but I hope that these products will be a helpful addition to your routine. Make sure to stay hydrated by drinking lots of water! Thank you for reading, love Gina.

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