Skip to primary navigation Skip to content Skip to footer
Back to Blog

Sun Safety in Hawaii


Grab the sun block before heading out…or else. Just like anywhere when the sun is out in full force, you need to slather on the sunscreen to avoid the burn that comes with complacency. You don’t want to start your vacation off on the wrong foot by lying in your hotel bed for the first three days, do you? Severe sun burn can lead to blisters, heat stroke, and later on down the line, skin cancer. Do your part now to enjoy your Hawaiian vacation to the fullest.

Heed these Hawaiian sun safety tips:

1. Apply sunscreen a half hour before going outside. Don’t wait till you’re already out on the beach. By then, you’re already being exposed to harmful UV rays. Always use a broad spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher, preferably one that’s waterproof if you’re going to be in and out of the ocean.

2. Even if you use a waterproof sunscreen, you still need to reapply — it’s not magically going to stick on your skin for the entire day.

3. Get in the shade. OK, we know. The beach is all about achieving that killer tan to make your friends jealous upon your return, but if you want to be safe, seek out some shade particularly during the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. — when the sun is at its harshest. A wide brimmed hat is also a good option, as is an umbrella and some sunglasses. Did you know that sand and water can reflect up to 85 percent of the sun’s rays?

4. Don’t use sunscreen on babies under six months old. Instead, keep them in the shade. Dress children in UV protective clothing.

5. A good rule of thumb is to apply 1 ounce of sunscreen to the skin a half hour before venturing outside. That’s about two tablespoons. Did you know most people, according to studies, use less than half of that amount? That’s simply not enough for the average person.

6. Re-apply sunscreen every two hours, or more frequently if you’ve spent a lot of time in the water or have toweled off frequently.

7. Check your skin frequently throughout the day. Ask a friend if you look like you’re burning. Look for reddening and swelling, and get out of the sun if you have these symptoms. You don’t want to be a candidate for skin cancer (incidentally, one in five Americans will get some type of skin cancer at some point in their lives).

8. Be diligent about sun safety even when not on the beach. Hiking and even walking around sightseeing can earn you a burn just as easily. Put on sunscreen before heading out on an eco-adventure tour, for example, as this involves being out in the open much of the day visiting waterfalls and spectacular lookouts.

9. Check the expiration date of your sunscreen. You should buy new bottles at least once a year to ensure optimal protection and coverage.

10. Sick of the beach? Call Hoku Hawaii Tours for a welcomed change of pace!

Visit Pearl Harbor!