Do t-shirts protect you from the sun?

Do t-shirts protect you from the sun?

Clothes do offer protection from the sun, but this protection may vary depending on the material that has been used, the process of making the item, the color, the humidity…

Generally, clothes, including t-shirts protect you from the sun, the clothes that protect you the most from the sun’s UV rays are:

  • Long-sleeve t-shirts and other long clothing that cover more skin
  • Darker colored clothing
  • Tightly woven fabrics
  • Dry fabrics.

There are many t-shirts that are now made in a special way so that they don’t let that much UV light come through, offering great protection from the sun, this can be checked on the label of the product which can sometimes indicate the UPF value of the product.

You also have to be extremely careful when getting wet, as the t-shirt can lose its protective value dramatically exposing you to harmful UV light for as long as the t-shirt stays wet.

can the sun damage you through clothes?

We said that t-shirts protect you from the sun, kind of, but they don’t do it as efficiently as to completely avoid damage from the sun’s harmful UV light, which could lead to a problem.

Even if you are wearing clothes covering your skin, the sun’s rays can still pass through and cause damage, a rule of thumb is that if you can see through your t-shirt, UV lights can pass as well and damage your skin.

This is especially true if your clothes are wet, as UV lights can pass through more easily and cause even more damage to your skin, which can lead to sunburns and in the worst cases accelerated aging and skin cancer long-term.

So, always stay safe, the sun is not something you want to play with as it can be very harmful to your long-term health.

Can the sun damage you through clothes?

can you still get your vitamin d through a t-shirt?

When the skin receives UVB light it produces a chain reaction that basically gives you your precious vitamin D which is very beneficial to your health and its absence can cause serious medical problems.

So yes, your body does a kind of photosynthesis, but, can wearing a t-shirt stop this process, partially or totally? According to the New York University Langone Medical Center, some fabrics may difficult this process from happening as they are getting in the way of these UVB rays and your skin.

But, you shouldn’t be worried at all, if you normally expose yourself to sunlight for at least a few minutes a day (Which is certain unless you’re locked in a basement) you are fine, what you should be worried about is the damage UV rays can do to your skin, which could be much worse.

If you want to learn more about this matter, be sure to check out this article about Vitamin D.

how to block the sun's ultraviolet (UV) light

Although many times t-shirts protect you from the sun, they are not enough to stay completely safe, and you should not believe that t-shirts protect you in such a way that sunscreen is not needed.

Having said this, the best ways to protect yourself and block the sun’s ultraviolet light are:

  • Avoid long direct exposure to the sun, especially on hot days (You can also check the UV index on your apple watch or the internet).
  • Wear clothes to cover the skin, as we said, t-shirts protect you from the sun, not as much as we would like but they do.
  • Wear sunscreen, this is crucial for protecting your skin from the sun and you should always do it when it’s possible.
  • Wear a hat, this can protect areas in your head that are also vulnerable to sunlight.
  • Wear  UV-blocking sunglasses, which protect areas around your eyes and the eyes themselves, which also need to be protected.

And that’s it! Don’t worry, as long as you’re careful you won’t be at risk, just take care of yourself. Also, if you want to know more about how you can protect yourself from the sun, be sure to check out Cancer.Org on this subject.

How to block sun's ultraviolet (UV) light


You have already learned how t-shirts protect you from the sun, and how you can protect yourself from the sun’s harmful UV rays, now, we hope you can put this information to good practice and stay safe, which is all that really matters.

And we hope you have learned a lot today, We’re thrilled to teach people around the world :). By the way, do you know about fast fashion and its terrible consequences for the environment, the people, and the economy? Do you know what Slow Fashion or the Sustainable Fashion movement is? You have to read these articles about this unknown but urgent subject, click here to read „Can Fashion Ever Be Sustainable?”, knowledge is power, ignorance is doom.

We also have a big surprise just for you! We have prepared a carefully dedicated About Us page where we will tell you who we are, what we do, our mission, our team, and many more! Do not miss out on this opportunity and click here to check it out. Also, you can visit our Pinterest, where we will pin sustainable fashion-related content and clothing designs that you will surely love.