Hey, Hamptons – Put It Where the Sun Don’t Shine!

Sunblock Kid
Put it where the sun don't shine...or else! Photo: shalamov/iStock/Thinkstock

It is not often that one can make a bold statement like, “Put it where the sun don’t shine,” in the media and not expect some sort of backlash. But that is exactly what I’m doing.

And I’m saying it to Gwyneth Paltrow, Beth Ostrosky-Stern, Christie Brinkley, Kelly Ripa and a bunch of other celebrities with ties to the area.

It isn’t just female celebrities I’m after. Though it is probably illegal to make a threat to a former president of the United States, I am hereby telling Hamptons summer visitor Bill Clinton, that he too can  “Put it where the sun don’t shine…or else.”

As a matter of fact, that also goes for all the summer visitors to the East End.

Actually, I am only making this statement because I care. And, of course, I am simply talking about sunscreen. It is a common myth that you only need to apply sunscreen to parts of your body that are directly exposed to the sun. In reality, nothing could be farther from the truth.

Many people do not relate to or have ever heard of UPF. It stands for Ultraviolet Protection Factor. It is a numerical rating given to clothing to indicate how effectively the fabric blocks ultraviolet (UV) radiation. In other words, what fraction of the sun’s ultraviolet radiation penetrates the fabric and reaches the skin.

For example, a shirt with a UPF of 20 allows 1/20th of the sun’s ultraviolet radiation to reach the skin. So, the higher the UPF, the higher the protection.

Most clothing provides very little sun protection. According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, a standard white T-shirt only reflects an equivalent Sun Protection Factor (SPF) value of 7. And that number actually decreases if the shirt is wet.

The sun does not discriminate. It can penetrate the clothing of celebrities, babies, politicians and anyone else for that matter. So you might want to start paying attention to the UPF. And of course, no matter what the UPF, you should also start putting your sunscreen where the sun don’t shine. This should make for a more worry-free summer in the Hamptons.

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