25 Best UPF Clothing Options in 2024

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We all know the importance of using sunscreen every day to protect ourselves from skin cancer, sunburn, dark spots and hyperpigmentation. But there’s another way to protect yourself that might not be on your radar: wearing UPF (or sun protective) clothing, or clothing that blocks harmful UV rays. While you definitely still need to wear sunscreen (especially in areas that won’t be covered), UPF clothing can be really useful as an added layer of protection when you’re relaxing outdoors, at the beach, and hiking. They’re also a great option if you’re playing sports or running a race – basically any scenario where you might lose your FPS quickly or have trouble fitting that additional app. To help you find the best UPF clothing, we looked at highly-rated and employee-tested options from our favorite activewear brands. This list features our top picks for all types of activities.

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Amazon

This is a great place to buy basic and long-sleeved t-shirts (plus hiking pants and hats) made with UPF fabric. A SELF editor highly recommends choosing the Helly-Hansen hoodie with a UPF 50+ rating: “It’s extremely lightweight, and the fabric hangs pleasantly on my body rather than sticking or clinging to it, even when I’m sweaty. The hood also doesn’t make my hair super static. I wore this shirt hiking as a fourteener in Colorado and hiking through Great Sand Dunes National Park, and it saved me from being a hot, humid, sunburned mess at high altitudes.

Vapor Clothing

UPF 50+ UV sun protection long sleeve

KING

REI becomes a SELF editor’s favorite hiking shorts– and they have a UPF 50+ rating. “I love these shorts so much that I had to buy a second pair (and will probably get a third this summer),” she says of the Trailmade Shorts. “They’re long enough that I don’t have to worry about them bunching up, the pockets are super roomy, and the adjustable waist ensures a great fit. They are also very lightweight – perfect for hot, humid days.” You can also grab convertible pants that will keep you comfortable during changing weather or another SELF editor’s favorite stretchy hoodie.

REI Cooperative

REI Co-op Sahara Shade Hoodie

Beyond Yoga

Spacedye High Waist Training Pants

Eddie Bauer

If you’re looking to get in on the sporty skirt trend, check out Eddie Bauer’s Departure Performance Skort, which is UPF 50 rated, sweat-wicking, and has subtle zippered side pockets to store your keys or phone. If your leggings Could use an update, one SELF editor recommends the Guide Trex pair, which has a UPF 50+ rating: “I wore these on an unseasonably warm and humid fall day, during which I hiked throughout the Chattanooga forest (and established a new guys better for bouldering outdoors). Not only did they move with me during hikes and climbs, but they also felt breathable and lightweight even after I sweated a lot.”

Eddie Bauer

Match Performance Skirt

Eddie Bauer

Coast and Climb short sleeve t-shirt dress

Eddie Bauer

Movement Lux 7/8 high waist leggings

Vuori

Vuori stands out when it comes to making cute UPF clothing that doubles as loungewear and great workout clothes. One standout: the Pose Plyo Tank, which looks like a casual ribbed top you might wear with jeans, but absorbs sweat, has a built-in bra that provides medium support, and is rated UPF 30+.

Solbari

All of Solbari’s clothing is sun-protective, so you can shop without double-checking items for UPF rating—and the brand offers everything from swimwear and hats to dresses and leggings. We recommend paying special attention to accessories, as the brand makes things we haven’t seen at other retailers, like arm sleeves you can wear with t-shirts and palmless gloves to protect the backs of your hands—a point often overlooked.

Solbari

Arm sleeves UPF50+ Sensitive Collection

Solbari

UPF50+ Palmless Hand Cover Coolasun Breeze Collection

Solbari

UPF50+ Ultra Wide Cotton Linen Hat

Solbari

Everlight Loose Fit UPF50+ Jacket

Solbari

Solbari Long Sleeve Maxi Dress UPF50+ Sensitive Collection

Solbari

Base Layer UPF50+ Coolasun Breeze Collection

UPF stands for ultraviolet protection factor and is a generic term for UVA and UVB protection. According to Skin Cancer FoundationUPF is different from SPF (sun protection factor), as UPF measures the amount of UV radiation that can pass through a fabric, while SPF is based on the amount of time it takes for UV-exposed skin to burn.

What should you look for in sun protective clothing?

When shopping for sun-protected gear, the Skin Cancer Foundation recommends looking for its seal of recommendation, which indicates the item has a UPF rating of at least 30. UPF 30 to 49 offers very good protection, while UPF 50+ offers excellent protection, shielding the skin from approximately 98% of the sun’s rays.

If you can’t put together an entire outfit out of high-quality UPF clothing, the foundation suggests choosing items with these qualities in mind as an additional shield (since all clothing offers some level of sun protection compared to bare skin):

  • Dark or bright colors, which absorb UV rays rather than allowing them to penetrate (if you hold a shirt up to a light and can see through it, that means it’s easy for the sun to pass through as well)
  • Densely woven fabrics made from denim, canvas, wool, or synthetic fibers
  • Wide, high-coverage silhouettes
  • Fabrics such as raw cotton and high-tech sportswear, which can absorb UV rays, and glossy/satin synthetic fibers, which can reflect light

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