Sun sleeves can be tremendously valuable in helping protect your arms from the sun. When wearing a tank-top or short-sleeved shirt, sun sleeves cover more of your arms, preventing UV radiation. Look for sun sleeves that are comfortable, moisture-wicking, and boast a high UPF rating.
We’ll explore what a UPF rating is, how to choose sun sleeves based on their type and fabric, and reviews of some of the most popular brands.
What are UV Sun Sleeves?
A sun sleeve is a garment that covers your arm, protecting it from the sun. Sun sleeves can help protect your exposed skin when wearing shorter-sleeved shirts and tank tops.
Sun sleeves are beneficial year-round for sun protection, but are even more crucial in the summertime when people are generally outside for longer and exposed more to the sun than in the colder months.
UV rays can be damaging to your skin and sun sleeves help protect your arms from those harmful UVB and UVA rays. Sunburns, wrinkles, dark spots–even cancers of the skin–can all result from too much exposed skin in the sun without a form of protection.
What to Keep in Mind When Choosing a Sun Sleeve
- Sun Sleeve Fabric – Sun sleeves that are made with moisture-wicking fabric will help you keep cool, transferring your sweat to the outside of the material, where it will evaporate.
- Sun Sleeve UPF Rating – Sun sleeves with a high UPF rating will offer better protection from UV radiation than those without a high rating. Ideally, you’ll want to look for sun sleeves with a 50+ UPF rating.
- Colors and Styles. Most sun sleeves come in classic colors like white, grey, and black. However, others come in more fun colors and patterns. Consider if you’re looking for a sleeve that will blend into the background, match seamlessly with your outfit, or stand out from the crowd.
- Length and Coverage Area. While all the sleeves in this article adequately cover your arms, some sun sleeves also extend to cover your hands. You may also want to incorporate a sun scarf into your outfit or consider a shawl-and-sleeve combo design, which offers protection to your arms as well as your shoulders and back for maximum, all-in-one sun protection coverage.
1. UV Sun Protection Compression Arm Sleeves (Multi-Pack)
- Ultimate Uv Protection: We all know the sunscreen game - apply, reapply, reapply… Well, not anymore! This UV Sun Protection Arm Sleeves boasts a UPF...
- Comfortably Cool & Wicks Moisture: The more you sweat, the cooler these arm sleeves get. Crazy, right? The sweat-wicking fabric in this cooling arm...
- Superb Tattoo Coverage: Covering up your ink for work with long sleeve cotton shirts are a thing of the past. Put the PRO in Protection with these...
These UV Sun Protection Compression Arm Sleeves are great for covering up while working out or on the job. Made from a nylon/spandex blend, they feature a UPF 50+ rating along with the ability to wick away sweat so you’ll never need to worry about sticky, sweaty sleeves.
In addition to protecting your arms from the sun, these sleeves are great for covering up tattoos because of their stretchy, breathable properties! The compression design also has the double benefit of improving blood circulation.
These sleeves are a great value option, as they come in packs of 2,3,4, and 6. The only drawback is that there are limited color selection, mostly featuring black, grey, and white color options.
2. SportsTrail Cooling Arm Sleeves
- PREMIUM QUALITY – Cooling Arm Sleeve is made of durable, weather resistant and stretchy material (90% nylon, 10% spandex). Arm Covers are chemical...
- ONE SIZE FITS MOST – Unisex tattoo sleeves cover up are designed to allow you maximum freedom of movement and it will fit men, women and children of...
- UPF 50 PROTECTION – SportsTrail cooling UV protection sleeves use innovative technology that blocks over 98% of harmful UVA and UVB rays so it...
SportsTrail’s Cooling Arm Sleeves feature a 50+ UPF rating with stretchy, comfortable fabric. These sleeves rely on a 90% nylon, 10% spandex composition, resulting in a light, breathable, moisture-wicking sleeve that’s safe and chemical-free.
The sleeves are unisex, so they work great for men and women. They’re also designed to fit adults as well as kids.
This company also boasts a lifetime guarantee. If you’re not satisfied with the product, they’ll replace it!
These sleeves also come in several pack options, with the bonus of some fun color options like blue, purple, teal, green, pink, and more!
3. UV Sun Protection Cooling Arm Sleeves (Multi-Pack)
- Extremely Elastic Material Cooling Arm Sleeves UPF 50+. Cooler than Bare Skin. Perfect for All Outdoor & Indoor Activities even Work-space. UV-R,...
- Three- Dimensional (3D) Seamless Weaving Design to make more comfortable than others.Unlike other sun sleeves that make you itchy and leave imprints...
- High Performance Fabric -Fast Sweat Kick-away & Fast Drying . Keep you warm in cold temperatures, & keep you cool in hotter temperatures
The UV Sun Protection Cooling Arm Sleeves are another great option for folks looking to keep their arms safe from the sun’s harmful rays.
Like the other sleeves listed here, these sleeves boast a 50+ UPF rating and materials that can keep you cool and comfortable by wicking away moisture. Their composition is a bit different though, with 92% polyamide and an 8% spandex blend.
The stretchy sleeves allow for faster muscle recovery and better circulation, as the material is extremely elastic. They also are seamless, which can help prevent irritation and itching.
One of our favorite aspects about these sleeves are the colorful options within the combo packs – there are some great colors to choose from. These sleeves also come in several different sizes, which is a plus for those who are a bit on the larger spectrum.
4. Hairwilly Advanced Cooling Shawl
- ❤️️ UV Protection- Can effectively resist 99.99% of the UV, Protection class is UPF 60+. Keep your skin away from freckles ,dark spots ,dull and...
- ❤️️High-grade Material- High elasticity cold material fabric: Ice-cold ,Comfortable and breathable.For outdoor use, the temperature in the shawl...
- ❤️️ Multi Occasion Use- This shawl can be matched with many clothes, It is almost suitable for all outdoor sports. You can wear it to play golf,...
For sleeves that are styled a bit differently, check out the Hairwilly Advanced Cooling Shawl. This shawl-style sleeve design covers both of your arms, your back, and your shoulders with one piece of material!
This design makes it much easier to protect your skin all over, and you won’t have to worry about misplacing one or the other sleeve in a pair.
The only downside to a shawl-style design is that sometimes the armholes can be tight against your arms when you’re trying to work out or move around.
You’ll want to measure your shoulder width carefully before to ensure that it’ll fit comfortably. This shawl is available in several sizes, so you should be able to find one that will work for you.
The cooling shawl also comes in several colors, including blue, pink, grey, and white.
5. Eclipse Sun Sleeves
- UPF 50+ Full Arm & Hand Sun Protection | 1 Pair
- Ambidextrous, unisex, moisture wicking and cooling
- 87% Polyester/13% Spandex | 37.5 high-performance fabric
The Eclipse Sun Sleeves are UPF 50+ rated full-arm sleeves, with the addition of hand coverage too. With a polyester/spandex blend, these sleeves are cooling as well as moisture-wicking.
Fans of these sleeves appreciate the extra coverage of the hand area, eliminating the need for sun protection gloves and protecting the often over-exposed hands.
As a bonus, these sleeves come in some really fun and unique patterns, like a neon yellow, pink polka-dots, yellow stripes, and even leopard print!
Do you use sun sleeves to protect your arms from UV rays? What’s your favorite style and what activities do you use sun arm sleeves for? Share your experiences in the comments below!