The warm and sunny WA climate creates a beautiful place to live all year round, however, when you are living and entertaining outdoors its essential that you have the right kind of protection from the sun’s harsh UV rays. Excessive exposure to UV radiation can result in heat stroke, skin damage, and even skin cancer. If you want to enjoy the outdoor areas of your home confidently and comfortably, high quality shade sails from Supreme Shades are the ideal solution.

Ultraviolet A (UVA) Rays

More penetrating than UVB rays, UVA rays can affect cells deeper in the skin. A key cause of premature ageing, they can lead to visible effects including wrinkles and sun spots. UVA rays are not absorbed by the ozone layer, and they can penetrate windows and clouds. 95% of the UV rays that reach the ground are UVA rays, they cause an immediate tanning effect, and sometimes sunburn.

Ultraviolet B (UVB) Rays

UVB rays damage the outermost layers of the skin and can directly damage DNA. They’re partially absorbed by the ozone layer; they don’t penetrate windows and are more likely to be filtered by clouds, but some rays still get through. UVB rays cause most skin cancers and overexposure can lead to sunburn and ageing of the skin. The effects of UVB rays are not immediate and may appear a few hours after sun exposure.

When Are UV Rays Strongest?

There are several environmental factors that can affect the power of UV rays. Some of these factors include:

  • Time of day – UV exposure is highest between 10am and 4pm. During this window, the sun’s rays have less distance to cover which makes them more powerful.
  • Season – UV exposure is highest in the spring and summer months as the sun is at a higher angle, which increases UV ray intensity.
  • Altitude – UV rays are more powerful at higher elevations because they have less distance to travel.
  • Clouds – Clouds filter out some UV rays from reaching the ground.

UPF Rating

UPF is the standard used to measure the effectiveness of sun protective fabrics. Short for “Ultraviolet Protection Factor”, this rating indicates how much of the sun’s UV radiation penetrates a fabric and reaches the skin. Ratings range from 15-50 – A fabric with a rating of 50 will allow only 1/50th of the sun’s UVA and UVB rays to pass through.

Protecting Yourself from UV Rays

To keep your skin healthy, it’s important to protect yourself and your family from the sun’s rays, especially if you know you’re going to be outdoors for a length of time. Limit your exposure to direct sunlight by staying in the shade. High quality, custom shade sails above your outdoor spaces are an effective and affordable shade solution. Crafted from premium, high-rated UPF fabrics, shade sails will not only provide excellent sun protection, but they will also keep your outdoor spaces cool, comfortable, and protected from rain when the weather turns. When selecting alfresco or pool shade, Perth homeowners should look for a minimum shade cloth rating of UPF20 which will protect against 95% of UV rays.

The Supreme Shades team will work with you to design outdoor shade options that suit your needs and budget, whether you need alfresco shade sails, carport shade or even pool shade. Get in touch with us today by calling 08 9405 4310 or contact us online.