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Reduce Your Risk

The best protection for your skin is the clothes that you wear! Protect your eyes too and wear a hat that protects your head and ears.

Many people's skin cancer started with childhood sunburns. Sun safety for kids is especially important.


What can I do?
  • Protect yourself no matter the time of year and even if it’s cloudy. Sun damage happens in every season and UV rays pass through light cloud cover.
  • Avoid being out in the sun between 11am and 3pm.
  • Stay in the shade (or make shade with an umbrella or tent).
  • Wear protective clothing, a hat and sunglasses.
  • Beware…you can get a sunburn from reflections on walls, snow and water!
  • Use a “broad-spectrum” sunscreen and lip balm of at least 30 SPF. If you're in the sun for a long time you will need to put the sunscreen and lip balm on more than once. Follow directions on the bottle.
  • If you work outdoors, you should attach a back flap to your helmet or hat, to cover the back of the neck and a visor for the front of the face.
  • Your skin looks great the way it is, but if you want a ‘bronzed look’ then sunless (UV free) tanning is the only safe way to do it. You can get a sunless tan at home or in a salon by using a cream, lotion, spray, or gel. Sunless tanning products darken your skin without exposing you to either the sun or a tanning bed.
  • If you are worried about getting enough vitamin D, talk to your doctor about taking supplements, or eat foods that are high in vitamin D (e.g. egg yolks, fortified low-fat milk), instead of going out in the sun unprotected. Please visit our Resources page for information on Vitamin D supplements.
UV in BC
BC has a big, beautiful outdoor playground to enjoy! The best way to enjoy it is by making sure you are protecting your skin from the sun, and by also looking for shady places to play.

  • Environment Canada's UV index is a simple measure of how strong the sun’s UV radiation is each day. In BC, you can find the daily index here, if the level is above 1.
  • Choose beaches and pools that have shade, or use a shade umbrella when sitting on the beach.
  • In BC, tanning beds in salons can only be used by people who are 18 years or older. Even if you are old enough, don't use them!
  • When going on boat cruises along Coal Harbour, Granville Island and other popular areas, don't forget your sun protection.
  • When heading up to Grouse Mountain, Cypress, Whistler or other popular mountains in BC remember to cover up and use sunscreen.
More health benefits
  • Aside from skin cancer, the sun causes wrinkling, sagging skin, freckles, moles and cataracts. Keep healthier eyes and smoother, healthier skin by protecting yourself from this premature aging.
  • You will also help protect yourself from heat exhaustion if you shield yourself from the sun and drink enough water.
  • It's great to protect your eyes with sun goggles while skiing, but if you protect your skin as well, you will avoid having a strange "goggle tan".
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SOURCE: Reduce Your Risk ( )
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