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In a previous article, I covered some sun care apps that helped predict when you'd need to reapply sunscreen when you're outdoors. For the most part, they were pretty useful except for the fact that not everyone had an iPhone, not everyone wants to take their iPhone to the beach, and the apps can only regulate one person at a time. A parent wouldn't be able to check on when all of their kids need extra sunscreen. But a new product named UV Sun Sense is making sunscreen protection a bit easier to understand.
UV Sun Sense is as simple as putting on a small plastic bracelet and then applying sunscreen to your body, and to the band. Once you don the bracelet and you head out into the sun, it turns from a light lavender color to a dark purple. As long as it's purple, you have enough sunscreen on. I personally wasn't a fan of the product. I decided to leave two in the sun with sunscreen to see how they'd react. One had SPF 30, the other had SPF50. I found that the SPF 30 remained a dark purple longer than the one with SPF 50. Maybe I applied moreSPF 30 sunscreen to the band and that's why it remained darker for longer but I'm not sure, then again as Summar noted- a higher SPF doesn't always necessarily mean more protection. Wearing a bright purple band wasn't something I was a fan of but more on that later.
From a practical standpoint, it is a lot like a hospital ID band. A thin piece of plastic that you can forgetyou're wearing, A glue adhesive keeps it held in place but can snag a few arm hairs if you aren't careful. I managed to go about my whole day and even head to the park without it falling off. My major issue is that it is dark purple. I would have preferred a more neutral color that doesn't attract as much attention. Walking around with a bright purple band will raise some questions, but maybe that's what the folks in the marketing department at UV Sun Sense wanted. Also you don't really get a uniform purple after you apply the sunscreen. Despite really working it into the band, I ended up with purple/lavender streaks and even had my fingerprints clearly showing on it. It looked as if my one year old nephew had painted a bracelet for me.
Overall, it works. I'm not sure how well it works due to the issues I saw with the SPF 50 and SPF 30 test but it gets the basic job done. A pack comes with 7 bands and for about $1 per band; its a cheap investment to help protect yourself or your family. Hopefully in the future they come in different colors and maybe even a reusable model. I personally wouldn't use this on a daily basis but if I was heading to the beach or staying outdoors for a long period of time, I'd keep it on and with the low price, split it amongst my friends.