I work outdoors. How can I protect my skin from UV radiation?

If you work outside on a construction site, farm or in gardening, you can be exposed to more sun than is good for you. And even on cloudy days, if you work outside you will still be exposed to UV radiation that can cause skin cancer and other skin and eye damage.

The easiest way to protect your skin is to:

  • cover up – wear trousers, a long-sleeved work shirt and a hat with a brim or flap covering your ears and the back of your neck;
  • use a sunscreen with high Sun Protection Factor (SPF) which is a measure of the amount of ultraviolet B radiation (UVB) protection– at least SPF15 is recommended; the sunscreen should also have at least four-star UVA protection which is a measure of the protection from ultraviolet A radiation;
  • take your lunch break in the shade;
  • drink plenty of water so that you don't get dehydrated; and
  • check your skin and see your GP immediately if you find any new moles or moles that look like they have changed. Don't delay – if you think something might be wrong, get it looked at quickly.
Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.

What is WorkSmart?

A career coach that works for everyone.


Enjoy bite-sized activities delivered to you every week.

Lightbulb brain

Equip yourself with essential skills to be the best you yet.


Get the guidance you need to stay focused and reach your goals.

Worksmart circle