can you get sunburn through black clothes

can you get sunburn through black clothes

Can You Get Sunburn Through Black Clothes?

Tanning and getting a bit of sun is no doubt beneficial for the skin, but getting overexposed to the sun rays can cause sunburn. Sunburn can sum up to an uncomfortable experience, and can even lead to more serious skin damages. Thus, people who intend to sunbathe for short periods of time usually resort to avoidance techniques such as wearing protective clothing, hats, and sunglasses. But does that mean that a black mask is going to keep you away from sunburns?

Black Clothes and Sun Protection

The answer is not as simple as yes or no. Black colored clothes block more of the sun’s rays than lighter colors, which can then decrease the potential risk of sunburn. However, it is important to note that black clothes are not a fool-proof way of avoiding exposure to the sun. In fact, it is highly recommended not to wear clothing of any single color and to make sure to use other forms of sun protection.

Additional Ways to Avoid Sunburns

Due to the fact that clothes of any color do not offer absolute protection from the sun, here are some extra sun protection methods that you should include in your tanning routine:

  • Protective Lip Balm – Use a lip balm with an SPF of 30 for extra protection for the lips.
  • Sunscreen – Make sure to vigorously apply sunscreen (at least SPF 30) to all parts of your body that are not covered with clothing.
  • Hats and Umbrellas – Wear wide-brimmed hats and bring umbrellas when possible, to help reduce the exposure of your face, shoulders and chest.
  • Shady Areas – Seek out shady areas to take breaks when sun tanning.


Black colours do offer some protection against sunburns. However, it is still highly recommended to wear protective clothing of different shades and to make use of sunscreen, lip balm and hats. Additionally, seeking out shady areas and limiting the time spent in the sun are also important tips to reduce the risk of getting a sunburn.

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