Your Game: Block Those Rays!

Skin cancer can sure take the fun out of golf, but the right gear and some common sense will help protect you.


Fotolia/Wollwerth Imagery

Brim-full of caution

Wallaroo hats for men, women, and children, with a 3-inch-or-wider brim and fabric rated UPF 50+, are recommended by the Skin Cancer Foundation. Fabrics are tested by the Australian Radiation Protection Agency and block 97.5% of the sun’s ultraviolet rays. “This is a hat you’re going to wear and use constantly,” says company founder Lenya Shore. “All of our hats are adjustable, too. We take sun protection seriously and contribute 1 percent of our profits to skin-cancer research.” Women’s Victoria $40, Men’s Cameron $44


Rub on the protection

“Skin Sunscreen Golf was specifically created for golfers, so it’s non-greasy,” according to company general manager Jessica Folino. “We removed all those oils that aren’t necessary. Once you rub the product in, you don’t have to go wash your hands, and it’s not going to run into your eyes.” It contains zinc and titanium oxides but no oxybenzone. There’s a lotion, lip balm, and a continuous spray that provides SPF 30 protection against UVA and UVB rays. $14


Protect your peepers

You may think pro golfers wear shades to look cool, but most of them are really taking sensible steps to protect their eyes against UV radiation. You should, too! Sunglasses like Oakley’s Radar EV use Plutonite® lens material that the company says filters out 100% of all UVA, UVB, UVC, and harmful blue light up to 400nm. Okay, they look pretty cool, too. $190


Long is cool

Shorts are cool, but so are lightweight Knockdown Pants by Ogio. These breathable golf pants have moisture-wicking properties to keep you dry and provide enough stretch for full range of motion. The gripper gel waistband helps keep your shirttail where it belongs, too. $80


Sleeves, please

Antigua’s new Exceed long-sleeve polos for men and women are a lot more comfortable than you think, even in warm weather. The polyester micro-flat pique fabric features Antigua’s Desert Dry Xtra-Lite D2XL moisture management, so the fabric won’t stick to your skin. They’re cut for full freedom of movement, too—something you don’t often find in a long-sleeve golf shirt. The UPF rating? 50+! For both men and women. $50


Sun Protection DOs and DON’Ts
From Westchester dermatologist Rhoda Narins, MD

1.  “You want sunblock that blocks both UVA and UVB rays. You might actually put on two kinds, one with chemicals, the other with micronized zinc and reapply during your round.”

2.  “A long-sleeve shirt and long pants are good, too, if you can find some that are cool.”

3.  "A baseball-type hat leaves your ears uncovered and doesn’t protect the back of your neck or the sides of your face. You should wear a hat with a brim that goes all the way around.”

4.  “You can also play earlier in the morning and later in the afternoon rather than right in the middle of the day.”

5.  “Most people play golf with one glove, which leaves the other hand unprotected. It’s better to wear two gloves. A V-neck shirt leaves your chest exposed, too.”

6.  “Eyewear is important, too, especially if you have light eyes. Sunglasses need both UVA and UVB protection, too.”



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