People who spend a lot of time outdoors understand the importance of proper sun protection for skin health. And while sunscreen with SPF is a common solution, UPF clothing provides an added layer of protection by blocking both UVA and UVB rays from ever reaching the skin. 

What’s more, UPF clothing allows for staying cool and comfortable while providing the necessary protection. But to ensure that protection (not to mention your gear) actually lasts, it's essential to care for your UPF clothes properly. The good news? Caring for UPF clothing is pretty simple.

In this article, we'll dive into the basics of how long UPF apparel lasts, and share our expert tips on how to wash UPF clothing for trusted sun protection on land and water.

How Long Does UPF Clothing Last?

Typically, UPF clothing that is properly cared for will last 30 to 40 washes. This means most will last roughly one to two years under normal usage of a few times a month. However, poorly cared for items could see their UPF protection vanish far earlier.

How To Wash UPF Clothing

Whether you're washing one of our many pieces of men's UPF clothing or women's sun shirts, the same simple principles apply to keep these helpful garments looking great and working as intended. The key is to be gentle, which will go a long way toward making your UPF clothing last.

Use cold water and the gentle/delicate cycle

Cool or cold water puts the least stress on the fibers that make up your clothes, helping ensure they keep their shape and don't stretch or shrink while in the wash. For the same reason, use your washing machine's gentle or delicate cycle. By preserving these fibers, you'll keep the UPF protection stronger for longer.

Use low or no fragrance/dye detergents

Stick to mild detergents with as few fragrances, dyes, and other substances beyond the basics of what's needed to clean. These can impair or permanently change the UPF protection provided by an item. You’ll also want to avoid using bleach on your UPF clothing, even if it's white. The intense power of the chemical is one of the fastest ways to compromise clothing’s UPF properties.

Lay out (or hang) to dry

Skip the dryer and simply lay your UPF clothing out to dry instead. Once again, this reduces the damage the heat of the dryer could do to the UPF-treated fabric of your clothes. You can also hang dry if you'd prefer. Fortunately, viscose from bamboo apparel like Free Fly's men's and women's UPF clothing dries quickly, which means you can wash and wear it in less time.

Read more3 Tips to Keep Your Free Fly Gear Fresh

Man & Women walking out of a bar with UPF clothing on

Stay Sun Safe in Free Fly UPF Apparel

When comfort and sun protection are crucial to your day of adventure, Free Fly has you covered with the buttery soft protection, breathability, and versatility of UPF-rated viscose from bamboo apparel. From our men's sun shirts and lightweight hoodies and beyond, our viscose from bamboo clothing outlasts and outperforms, delivering unparalleled comfort and quality designed to be ignored. Shop Free Fly today to shop all of our UPF-rated apparel for work, play, and everything in between.