7 Must-Have Features in a Sun Protection Hoodie

Rayward Apparel

Key Highlights

  • Sun protection hoodies are essential for outdoor activities in warm weather, providing maximum sun protection and keeping you cool and comfortable.
  • The UPF rating is the most important feature to look for in a sun hoodie, as it determines the level of protection against harmful UV rays.
  • Breathable fabrics ensure you stay cool even on hot sunny days, allowing air to flow through and keeping you comfortable.
  • Moisture-wicking technology helps to keep you dry and comfortable wicking away sweat moisture from your body
  • A lightweight design is ideal for sports and intense activities, allowing you to move freely without feeling weighed down.
  • Hood coverage is essential for protecting your head and neck from sunburn and heat, providing maximum coverage and sun protection.
  • Thumb loops are a useful feature for securing the sleeves in place, especially during activities like rock climbing.


Sun protection is crucial when spending time outdoors, especially on sunny days. While sunscreen can provide some level of protection, it can be a hassle to constantly reapply it. That's where UPF hoodies come in. UPF hoodies are designed to provide maximum coverage while keeping you cool and comfortable. In this blog post, we will discuss the must-have features to look for in a sun protection hoodie.

7 Essential Features to Look for in a Sun Protection Hoodie

Blue sun protection hoodie

When choosing a sun protective hoodie, there are several features that you should consider. These features will ensure that you stay protected from harmful UV rays and comfortable in warm weather. Let's take a closer look at these essential features.

1. UPF Rating: The Shield Against UV Rays

The UPF rating is the most important feature to consider when choosing a UPF hoodie. UPF stands for Ultraviolet Protection Factor and measures the level of protection the fabric provides against the sun's harmful UV rays. The higher the UPF rating, the more protection the hoodie offers. Look for a hoodie with a UPF rating of 30 or higher for the best protection. This will shield your skin from the sun's rays, reducing the risk of sunburn, long-term skin damage, and skin cancer.

2. Breathable Fabric: Keeping Cool Under the Sun

One of the key features to look for in a sun protection hoodie is breathable fabric. When spending time outdoors in warm weather, it's important to stay cool and comfortable. Breathable fabrics allow air to flow through the hoodie, keeping you cool even on hot sunny days. Look for hoodies made from lightweight and breathable materials such as polyester or bamboo. These fabrics are known for their moisture-wicking properties, allowing sweat to evaporate quickly and keeping you dry.

3. Moisture-Wicking Technology: Stay Dry and Comfortable

Moisture-wicking technology is another important feature to look for in a sun protection hoodie, especially in hot temperatures. When being active outdoors, you're likely to sweat, and a hoodie that wicks moisture will help to keep you dry and comfortable. This technology pulls moisture away from your body and allows it to evaporate quickly, preventing you from feeling sweaty and sticky. The best sun shirts and hoodies are specifically designed with moisture-wicking properties to ensure you stay dry and comfortable during your outdoor adventures.

4. Lightweight Design: For Ease of Movement

When participating in outdoor activities, a lightweight design is essential for ease of movement. Look for a UPF hoodie that is lightweight and made from stretchy materials. This will allow you to move freely without feeling restricted or weighed down. A lightweight hoodie is also easier to pack and carry, making it convenient for travel and outdoor adventures. Whether you're hiking, running, or engaging in other active pursuits, a lightweight sun protective hoodie will provide the comfort and flexibility you need - especially in the heat.

5. Hood Coverage: Essential for Protecting Your Head and Neck

One of the key features that sets a sun protection hoodie apart from a regular long-sleeve shirt is the hood coverage. Without the "hoodie" it's just a standard long sleeve shirt. The hood provides additional protection for your head and neck, areas that are often more exposed to the sun than any other area on your body. A quality lightweight hood will help to shield your head and neck from the sun's rays, reducing the risk of sunburn and heat-related illnesses. A hooded sun shirt is an excellent choice for outdoor activities on sunny days, ensuring that you stay protected from top to bottom. Another great addition to help keep your head and neck protected is a quality sun blocking hat.

6. Thumb Loops: Securing the Sleeves in Place

Thumb loops may seem like a small feature, but they can make a big difference when it comes to comfort and convenience especially for more active pursuits. Thumb loops are designed to secure the sleeves of the hoodie in place, especially during activities like rock climbing or other outdoor pursuits where you need your hands free. When you slip your thumbs through the loops, the sleeves stay in place, providing extra sun protection and preventing them from riding up or falling down. Thumb loops also help to keep your hands warm on cooler days. Look for a UPF hoodie with thumb loops for added versatility and functionality.

7. Durability: Withstanding the Elements

Durability is an important factor to consider when choosing a sun protection hoodie. Outdoor activities can be rough on clothing, so it's important to invest in a hoodie that can withstand the elements. Look for a hoodie that is made from high-quality materials and has reinforced stitching and from a reputable brand. This will ensure that your hoodie lasts longer, even with frequent use and exposure to the sun, wind, and other outdoor elements. A durable UPF hoodie will continue to provide you with the sun safety and comfort you need, season after season.

Why UPF Ratings Matter in Sun Protection Clothing

UPF ratings play a crucial role in sun protective clothing. UPF stands for Ultraviolet Protection Factor and measures the level of protectiveness the fabric provides against the sun's harmful UV rays. UPF clothing with a higher rating offers better protection against the sun's rays, reducing the risk of sunburn and long-term skin damage. It's important to understand the significance of UPF ratings when choosing UPF clothing to ensure that you're adequately protected from the sun's harmful effects.

Understanding UPF Measurements

beach with blue sky

UPF measurements determine the level of protection that UPF clothing provides against the sun's UV rays. UPF stands for Ultraviolet Protection Factor, and it is a rating system that measures the amount of UV radiation that passes through the fabric. The higher the UPF rating, the greater the level of protection. For example, a UPF hoodie with a rating of UPF 50 allows only 1/50th of the sun's UV radiation to pass through, blocking 98% of the UV rays. UPF 50+ is the highest level of UV protection possible. Standard cotton clothing often provides far less UV protection, with many shirts only having a UPF rating of 5 or less, making it even more important to have the right type of apparel when venturing outdoors. Understanding UPF measurements is essential when selecting UPF clothing to ensure that you have adequate protection from the sun's harmful rays and keep your skin healthy.

The Difference Between UPF and SPF

While UPF and SPF (Sun Protection Factor) are both measurements of UV protection, they are intended for different types of products. SPF is a measure of the effectiveness of sunscreen in protecting against UVB rays, which are primarily responsible for sunburn. You can still get a sunscreen that protects from both UVA and UVB, but only if it's designated as a broad spectrum sunscreen. UPF, on the other hand, measures the effectiveness of UPF clothing in blocking both UVA and UVB rays. SPF only measures the protection provided by the sunscreen, while UPF measures the protection provided by the fabric of the clothing.

The Role of Fabric in Sun Protection

The fabric used in UPF clothing plays a crucial role in its effectiveness. Different fabrics have varying levels of sun protectiveness, and it's important to choose the right fabric for the level of protection you need. Polyester fabric is a popular choice for UPF clothing due to its natural UV protectiveness as well as its durability and moisture-wicking properties. Natural materials like bamboo also offer excellent UV protection and are known for their breathability and softness. Understanding the role of fabric in UPF clothing will help you make an informed decision when choosing the right clothing for your outdoor activities.

Natural vs Synthetic Fibers

When it comes to UPF clothing, you have the option of choosing between natural and synthetic fibers. Natural fibers like bamboo offer excellent UV protection due to their inherent properties. Bamboo fabric has a natural UPF rating and is known for its breathability and softness. Synthetic fibers like polyester are also commonly used in UPF clothing. Polyester fabric is lightweight, durable, and moisture-wicking, making it ideal for outdoor activities. Both natural and synthetic fibers have their own advantages, and the choice ultimately depends on your personal preference and the level of UV protection you require. However, regardless of what fabric you choose, the easiest way to know if it's providing UV protection is to look for its UPF rating.

Other qualities that increase UV protection

In addition to the UV protection provided by the fabric, there are other qualities that go into the design of a UPF hoodie to achieve such high UV Protection ratings. These qualities include:

  • Fabric design: If fabrics are weaved tightly together they will provide a higher level of protection - there are less gaps for the UV radiation to penetrate. Also tight fitting clothing generally has a lower UPF rating than loose fitting clothing. When a fabric is stretched it can lose some of its effectiveness in regards to UV protection.
  • Color: The darker the fabric, the more likely it is that it provides a higher level of UV protection. That's not to say lighter colored fabrics can't be protective, but if you are unsure of the UPF level of a shirt it's safest to go with the darker option. Look for sun protective hoodies with a UPF rating of 50+ for maximum UV protection - the highest level of sun protection possible.

Design Features That Enhance Sun Protection

The design features of a UPF hoodie play a significant role in enhancing its UV protective capabilities. Two key design features to look for in a sun protection hoodie are not only a lightweight and comfortable hood, but long sleeves with thumb loops. Thumb loops are small loops located at the end of the sleeves that allow you to secure the hoodie's sleeves over your hands. This feature provides additional coverage and ensures that your hands and wrists are protected from the sun's rays which is especially important for activities like rafting, rock climbing, and anything else where you are actively using your hands.

The Importance of Hood Design

Black sun protection hoodie

The hood design of a sun protection hoodie is an essential feature that enhances sun protection. It provides additional coverage for your head, neck, and face, which are often exposed to the sun's rays. Proper hood coverage is crucial, especially on sunny days when the sun's rays are intense. When choosing a UPF hoodie, look for a hood design that is large enough to cover your head and neck fully. You'll want to make sure that when worn, the hood doesn't cause the back of the shirt to lift up and that the hood makes it all the way to the front of your head. Remember, the purpose of a sun protection hoodie is to provide maximum coverage from UV exposure, so paying attention to the hood design is essential.

Additional Coverage: Long Sleeves and Thumb Looops

Long sleeves and thumb loops are pivotal in providing additional coverage from harmful UV rays. The extended sleeves ensure that your arms receive maximum sun protection, guarding against skin damage during outdoor activities. By incorporating thumb loops, the sleeves stay securely in place, offering continuous coverage even during dynamic movements like rock climbing or hiking. This feature not only enhances sun protection but also adds a practical element to the sun shirt, making it versatile for various activities in warm weather. Whether you are enjoying a sunny day on the trails or engaging in active pursuits, the combination of long sleeves and thumb loops provides confidence and comfort.

The Benefits of Wearing Sun Protection Hoodies

Wearing sun protection hoodies has numerous benefits, making them a must-have item for outdoor enthusiasts. Here are some of the key benefits:

  • Long-term skin health: UPF hoodies provide maximum sun protection, reducing your exposure to harmful UV rays. This helps prevent sunburn, premature aging, and skin damage, reducing the risk of skin cancer in the long run. This is a huge benefit especially if you consider the lack of UV protection most shirts provide - which is far less than you may think.
  • Minimize sunscreen consumption: By wearing a sun protection hoodie, you can minimize the amount of sunscreen you need to apply to your skin. A sun hoody provides 24/7 coverage, unlike sunscreen it never requires reapplication. This not only saves you time and money but also reduces the chemicals you expose your skin to.

By incorporating sun protection hoodies into your outdoor wardrobe, you can enjoy the benefits of long-term skin health and even save money by minimizing your sunscreen consumption.

Long-term Skin Health and Skin Cancer Prevention

Long-term skin health and skin cancer prevention are important considerations when spending time in the sun. Sun protection hoodies play a crucial role in protecting your skin from harmful UV rays, reducing the risk of sunburn, premature aging, and skin damage.

UV light from the sun is a known carcinogen and a major cause of skin cancer. By wearing a sun hoody with a high UPF rating, you create a physical barrier between your skin and the sun's harmful UV rays. This significantly reduces your exposure to UV light and lowers your risk of developing skin cancer - the #1 diagnosed cancer in America.

Comfort and Performance in Hot Weather

Comfort and performance are essential when choosing outdoor apparel, especially in hot weather. Sun protection hoodies are designed with lightweight and breathable fabrics that keep you comfortable even in hot temperatures.

We always highly recommend bamboo options. They are a lightweight and stretchy material used in UV protection hoodies which provide excellent breathability, allowing air to flow freely and moisture to evaporate quickly. This helps regulate your body temperature and prevents overheating. Bamboo is also one of the softest and most comfortable fabrics on the planet, making it a great shirt for any occasion, indoors or outdoors.

Additionally, the loose fit of UPF hoodies allows for a slight breeze to pass through the fabric, further enhancing comfort in hot weather. The stretchy material ensures a comfortable and flexible fit, allowing for ease of movement during active pursuits.

By choosing a sun protection hoodie with comfort and performance features, you can stay cool, comfortable, and protected in both hot and cold weather conditions.

Minimize sunscreen consumption and save money

Man holding wallet with money

One of the benefits of wearing a sun protection hoodie is the ability to minimize sunscreen consumption, which in turn can save you money. Sunscreen can be expensive, and constantly reapplying it can add up over time especially if you'll be outdoors for any extended period of time (you should be reapplying at least every two hours).

By wearing a sun hoodie, you create a physical barrier between your skin and the sun's rays, reducing the amount of sunscreen you need to apply. This not only saves you money on sunscreen but also saves you time and effort in the application process. Additionally, by minimizing sunscreen consumption, you reduce the chemicals you expose your skin to. The best sun hoodies are a natural and eco-friendly alternative to sunscreen and most sun hoodies don't utilize any chemicals at all, providing long-lasting coverage.

By investing in a sun protection hoodie, you can save money on sunscreen and enjoy the convenience and peace of mind of long-lasting sun protection without needing any additional chemicals.


Investing in a mens sun hoodie or womens sun hoodie with the right features can make a significant difference in safeguarding your skin from harmful UV rays. From UPF ratings to breathable fabrics, moisture-wicking technology, and durable designs, these hoodies offer unparalleled comfort in various outdoor activities. Understanding the importance of these features not only ensures long-term skin health and prevents skin cancer but also minimizes sunscreen usage and saves you money. Prioritize your skin's well-being by choosing a sun protection hoodie that not only offers functionality but also style, making it a versatile and essential addition to your outdoor wardrobe.

Frequently Asked Questions

What UPF rating should I look for in a sun protection hoodie?

When shopping for a sun protection hoodie, it's important to look for a high UPF rating. The UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) rating indicates how well a fabric blocks UV rays. We always recommend getting a UPF hoodie with a UPF of 30 or more, ensuring you're receiving adequate coverage.

A sun protection hoodie with a high UPF rating is an excellent choice for anyone looking to protect their skin from the sun's damaging effects. It provides peace of mind knowing that you are reliably protected against UV radiation, minimizing the risk of sunburn, skin damage, and long-term health issues.

Can I rely on a sun hoody alone for UV protection?

While sun protection hoodies offer significant UV protection, it's important to remember that they should be used in conjunction with other preventative measures. While they provide a physical barrier against UV rays, they might not cover all exposed areas like your face, neck, and hands.

To ensure comprehensive UV protection, it's recommended to wear sunscreen on exposed areas, wear a wide-brimmed hat to protect your face and neck, and use sunglasses to protect your eyes. By combining these measures with a sun protection hoodie, you can enjoy maximum sun protection during outdoor activities.

How does the fabric of a sun protection hoodie affect its performance?

The fabric of a sun protection hoodie plays a crucial role in its performance. Look for hoodies made from lightweight, moisture-wicking materials that offer breathability and comfort in hot temperatures. These fabrics are designed to wick away moisture from your skin, keeping you dry and cool in the sun.

Additionally, the fabric should have a tight weave or be treated with special UV-blocking agents to provide maximum protection against UV rays. Fabrics like polyester, nylon, and bamboo are popular choices for UPF clothing due to their ability to block UV rays effectively.

It's important to note that the fabric should also be durable and long-lasting. Sun protection hoodies often endure harsh outdoor conditions, so a high-quality fabric will ensure that your hoodie remains effective over time.

Are sun protection hoodies suitable for all outdoor activities?

Yes, sun protection hoodies are suitable for a wide range of outdoor activities. Whether you're hiking, fishing, golfing, or simply enjoying a sunny day at the beach, a UPF hoody will keep you protected from harmful UV rays.

The best sun hoodies offer a convenient and versatile option for outdoor enthusiasts. They provide a physical barrier between your skin and the sun's rays, reducing the risk of sunburn and long-term skin damage. With their lightweight and breathable fabrics, sun protection hoodies are designed to keep you cool and comfortable during active pursuits.

So whether you're exploring the great outdoors or engaging in your favorite outdoor activities, a sun protection hoodie is a must-have item to ensure your skin stays protected from the sun's harmful UV rays.

How often should sun protection clothing be replaced?

The durability of UPF clothing varies depending on the quality of the fabric and construction. However, it's generally recommended to replace UPF clothing when it becomes worn out or loses its UPF rating.

Over time, the fabric of UPF clothing may become stretched, faded, or damaged, which can reduce its effectiveness in blocking UV rays. Additionally, frequent washing and exposure to harsh outdoor conditions can also impact the durability of the fabric.

To ensure that your UPF clothing continues to provide adequate UV protection, inspect it regularly for signs of wear and tear. If you notice any damage or a significant decrease in the fabric's capabilities, it's time to replace your sun protection hoodie.

Investing in high-quality sun protection clothing and following proper care instructions can help prolong its lifespan. It's also important to keep in mind that regular use and exposure to sunlight will eventually wear out any sun protection clothing, so it's essential to monitor its condition and replace it as needed.

Can sun protection hoodies be fashionable as well as functional?

Yes, the best sun hoody can be both fashionable and functional. Many brands now offer stylish designs that you can wear both on and off the trails. With a wide range of colors, patterns, and styles available, you can find a sun protection hoodie that suits your personal taste.

UPF hoodies are designed to provide maximum sun protection without compromising on style. Look for hoodies with a loose fit, thumb loops, and other functional features that offer versatility and comfort. Whether you're exploring the outdoors or running errands in town, a fashionable sun protection hoodie allows you to stay protected from the sun's harmful rays while looking great.

What care instructions should be followed to maintain the effectiveness of a sun protection hoodie?

To maintain the effectiveness of a sun protection hoodie, follow the care instructions provided by the manufacturer. Wash the hoodie according to the instructions, avoid using harsh chemicals or bleach, and hang it to dry. This will help preserve its UV protection and durability.

How do I choose the best sun hoody to ensure maximum coverage?

To choose the right size for a UPF hoodie, measure your chest, waist, and sleeve length. Use these measurements as a guide to select the correct size. Remember to choose a size that provides a loose fit for maximum coverage and comfort.

Can I customize the sun protection hoodies with my own logo?

Yes, for any businesses who are looking to create their own sun hoodies we can help! Whether you are simply looking to outfit your staff or you are looking to resell your own branded products to your customers, we have you covered. We not only offer significant wholesale discounts, but handle everything from the design to the fulfillment. Contact us for more information!