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Shaded Nation

Shaded Nation – Shade Sails

Some common shade sail questions

Thinking about investing in a shade sail but would like to find out a bit more information first?

Read on to see the answers to some of the questions most frequently asked by our customers.

How is a shade sail installed?

Shade sails are remarkably easy to install and the job can often be done by just two people in a couple of hours, although larger, more elaborate structures will require extra work.

All of the necessary parts will be supplied and easy-to-understand instructions will guide you through the process step by step. For detailed information, why not take a look at our installation guide?

Do I need to take it down? 

We only sell shade sails that are made from the highest quality materials. Our products are UV stabilised and are well crafted with webbed edges, meaning they are semi-permanent structures that can be left out for ten months of the year.

We are confident in the quality of our products and for that reason, premium and standard shades are guaranteed for ten years, while lightweight models are guaranteed for five years.

How do I keep it clean? 

The perfect time to clean your shade is when it’s taken down during the winter and it’s a really straightforward process. All you’ll need is a hose pipe and a soft brush and you can keep things looking spick and span.

What are the benefits?

The main benefit of a shade sail is that they provide an excellent level of protection from the sun and health problems like sunburn and sunstroke. Our shades can block out up to 98.8 per cent of harmful UV rays, which allows you to make the most of the outside while staying safe at the same time.

We also know that style is important and our shades are designed to be an attractive, easy-on-the-eye addition to wherever they are located, be it a school playground, back garden, commercial building or sporting venue.

Brits risk sunburn in pursuit of tan

Tanned skin can look great, but is it really worth jeopardising your health to get it?

Unfortunately a lot of Brits seem to think so, particularly after the bad weather we have had to put up with over the last few months.

A new survey carried out by Cancer Research UK and Nivea Sun found that a significant number of people are willing to forego sun protection in a bid to get a tan this summer.

When asked if the bad weather experienced in the UK last year will make them less likely to use protection when in strong sun this summer, ten per cent said yes.

Furthermore, nearly a third of respondents claimed that the chance to sunbathe and get a tan is one of the main reasons they go on holiday abroad.

Perhaps the most alarming finding of the survey was that many people still avoid protecting themselves in the sun even though they are aware of the potential health risks.

Close to 90 per cent of respondents said they know that too much sun exposure is the main cause of skin cancer.

However, only 65 per cent plan to use sunscreen of at least factor 15 this summer and just 36 per cent claimed they spend some time in the shade when in strong sun.

“We know it’s been tough getting through the long winter, especially when last summer was such a wash out, but it’s still important to avoid getting sunburnt when it finally makes an appearance.

“We all need some sun to make vitamin D for healthy bones, but overexposure to the sun’s rays can cause sunburn, which is a sign that the DNA in your skin cells has been damaged. Not only can this cause premature ageing and wrinkles it increases the risk of skin cancer,” commented Yinka Ebo, Cancer Research UK senior health information officer.

An easy way to keep skin protected during the summer is to install a shade sail. These structures are durable, easy to set up and can block out as much as 98.8 per cent of harmful UV rays.

Don’t let sunburn ruin your outdoor fun

After months of wet, windy and downright miserable weather, the UK finally got a bit of sunshine over the bank holiday weekend.

With such glorious hot and sunny conditions, it’s understandable that people wanted to spend as much time outside as possible.

What’s more, being out in the fresh air is a great way to spend time with friends and family and can also boost your sense of wellbeing.

However, this can easily be spoilt if you don’t take precautions against sunburn. A recent study of residents in Queensland, Australia found that an alarming number of people don’t do enough to protect themselves from the dangers of the sun.

The Queensland Institute of Medical Research and Queensland Health discovered that one in eight men and one in 12 women in the Australian state got sunburnt on an average weekend.

While warm countries such as Australia see more sunshine, these findings are still relevant to places like the UK where sunbathing is a hugely popular and potentially dangerous activity.

The survey also discovered that people aged 18 to 24 are seven times more likely to suffer sunburn than those over 65. The chances of someone aged 35 to 44 getting burnt are five times more common.

Dr Peter O’Rourke, one of the report’s authors, said the time lapse between people getting sunburn and developing skin cancer may mean individuals are failing to appreciate the risks.

“You don’t get sunburnt and then the next day develop skin cancer, there are several decades of lag and it is often difficult to associate, when you are young, that these things are going to happen to you years later.

“The consequences are not obvious at the time of the behaviour,” he stated.

Mr O’Rourke added that people may need to be constantly reminded of the dangers of sunburn and the benefits of staying protected.

An easy and practical way to limit the harmful impact of the sun is to install a shade sail, which can block as much as 98.8 per cent of UV rays.

Sun Awareness Week kicks off

This week (May 6th to 12th) is Sun Awareness Week. As the name suggests, this campaign is all about educating and informing Brits on how they can stay safe in the sun.

It has been organised by the British Association of Dermatologists (BAD) and is run by the organisation’s Skin Cancer Prevention Committee, which is comprised of leading medical professionals with expertise in skin cancer, vitamin D and public health messaging.

The campaign takes a two-pronged approach that aims to make people aware of how they can avoid sunburn and also how to detect potential signs of skin cancer.

One of the major features of the week is the release of the free World UV app for mobile phones. It has been created by BAD in cooperation with the Met Office to provide people with a daily UV forecast for more than 10,000 locations across the globe.

This will help Brits know what the weather has in store and plan for sunny days, whether they are at home or abroad.

It is available on both iPhones and android models and gives sun protection advice that is specific to people’s skin type.

The campaign will also see the return of the Mole & Sun Advice Roadshow, which will travel the country spreading the sun awareness message.

It was a huge success last year and will use practical, face-to-face demonstrations and engagement with the public to encourage people to check their skin, use the appropriate UV protection and visit a doctor if they notice any changes to their skin.

Here at Shaded Nation we are passionate about sun safety and fully support the message of Sun Awareness Week.

Our sail shades are a great way to stay protected while the sun is shining. They are specifically crafted to limit the harmful effects of the sun and can block out as much as 98.8 per cent of UV rays.

Want to know some more? Click here to find out.

Early appointments ‘key to tackling sun cancer’

Patients who are concerned they may have skin cancer should take any appointment they are offered as early as possible to try and catch the disease before it develops.

This is the advice of dermatologists and skin cancer specialists at Addenbrooke’s hospital in Cambridge.

As part of Sun Awareness Week, doctors and nurses at the hospital are asking people to take up appointments at the earliest opportunity to diagnose and treat skin cancer a quickly as possible, Cambridge News reports.

Vicky McCorran, a skin-cancer-specialist nurse, said that if a person is concerned about a lesion on their skin being cancer, they should go to their GP who could potentially refer them to hospital, where they would go on the two-week waiting list for the cancer pathway.

Ms McCorran said it is important for people to realise this doesn’t necessarily mean they have skin cancer, but it’s important to get the skin looked at as soon as possible just in case.

“If they are seen by a specialist at the hospital and are referred for surgery, this needs to be done in 31 days – it is a national target that hospitals have to achieve,” she stated.

“These targets are in the patients’ interests as the sooner they are diagnosed the sooner they can have all the necessary treatment.”

Ms McCorran said a lot of people don’t realise that nearly 3,000 die from skin cancer each year in the UK and the “earlier it is detected the better”.

Sunburn is one of the major causes of skin cancer and protecting your skin can go a long way to limiting your chances of contracting the disease.

Keeping your skin covered on a sunny day and applying sun lotion to any exposed areas is strongly recommended.

Shade Sails are also effective at limiting the dangers of the sun. Unlike parasols or umbrellas, they are designed with sun safety specifically in mind and block up to 98.8 per cent of harmful UV rays.

To take a look at the shades we have to offer, visit our online store.

Hull teenagers record sun-safety rap

A group of teenage girls have recorded a rap that aims to educate young people across the UK about sun safety.

The Daisy Chains of Cottingham near Hull, won the Humberside Police Lifestyle Challenge for their song, which warns about the dangers of the sun, the Hull Daily Mail reports.

However, their success did not stop there, as the girls’ rap was noticed by sun cream company SunSense, which paid for the group to travel to Manchester and record the song.

“It is great to think our rap will be played in schools across the country for children to listen to and join in and at the same time learn about sun safety,” commented 15-year-old Chloe Allenby, one of the group members who went to Blueprint Studios for the recording.

The Daisy Chains had originally contacted SunSense for some free sun cream products to give away as they ran a stall to help raise awareness about sun safety.

However, the company was so impressed with the girls’ efforts that they offered them a chance to record the rap.

“We were delighted when the Daisy Chains approached us with their sun awareness rap. It fits perfectly with the important sun safety messages we are trying to get out there as part of our Sun Sensible campaign and we were so impressed that we’ve put it on our website for everyone to see.

“It is so important that young people are aware of the risks of sun damage from an early age and learn how to protect themselves,” commented Karen Kennedy, marketing manager at SunSense UK.

SunSense is currently running the Sensible Sun Campaign, which aims to promote sun awareness in schools throughout the UK.

An increasing number of schools are protecting their pupils from the threat of sunburn by installing sail shades.

These structures block nearly all of the sun’s harmful UV rays and can help children enjoy the benefits of outdoor learning and pay, while minimising the risk of sunburn.

Here at Shaded Nation we are used to providing sail shades to schools and can offer bespoke designs or pre-made structures.

If you’d like to listen to the Daisy Chain’s rap you can find it here.

‘Mower rage’ set to sweep the nation

Now that spring is finally here and the sun has started to show its face, Brits all over the country will be taking to their garden to get it looking perfect for the summer months.

However, this doesn’t always go down too well with the neighbours. A new survey commissioned by B&Q has revealed there are certain activities that can drive your neighbours mad if you choose to engage in them on a Sunday morning.

One of the worst offenders is mowing the lawn, with the hum of a lawnmower widely regarded as one of the most annoying sounds of summer.

'Mower rage' set to sweep the nation

‘Mower rage’ set to sweep the nation

The survey found that 53 per cent of people are less than happy when they hear someone fire up the lawnmower any earlier than 9:39am and the term ‘mower-rage’ has been invented to describe this frustration.

Other garden sounds that aren’t appreciated on a Sunday morning are strimming, hammering and letting children out to play. The survey revealed that most people see 9:31am as an acceptable time to let children out, 9:42am for strimming and 9:46am for hedge trimming.

Hammering is not seen as OK until 9:49am, while garden parties and BBQs should not start until 10:32am and 10:38am respectively. What’s more, one in 25 people believe that neighbours should keep the noise down until midday.

“Noisy inconveniences early in the morning can result in some serious neighbourly grudges.

“Many of us like to get our garden chores out of the way, so we can relax and enjoy our outdoor space,” commented Kevin Walker, outdoor power buyer at B&Q.

Whatever you choose to do in the garden this summer, staying safe from the sun should be a top priority for you and your family.

A great way to do this is to an install a sail shade – semi-permanent structures that can protect you from nearly all of the sun’s UV rays.

They are available in a range of shapes and colours, all of which showcase an attractive contemporary style that will ensure your neighbours have no cause for complaint.

Asda launches new sunburn campaign

Asda has teamed up with the British Skin Foundation to launch a new skincare campaign.

The ‘Don’t Get Burnt’ initiative aims to keep the supermarket’s customers protected from the sun for less and raise awareness of the health risks associated with sunburn.

A recent survey carried out by the company found that a worrying 57 per cent of Brits could be wearing out-of-date sunscreen, while a further 56 per cent admitted they don’t apply the product often enough.

This increases the risk of contracting skin cancer – a disease that 100,000 people in the UK are diagnosed with each year and claims 2,500 lives.

Being careful with how much you expose yourself to the sun is one of the easiest ways to limit your chances of developing skin cancer.

In a bid to ensure more people are protected, Asda has called on the government to cut VAT on sun care products.

Its survey found that 60 per cent of Brits think sunscreen is overpriced. This has led to 26 per cent of people using products that are over two years old and only offer a fraction of the protection they did when originally bought. Alarmingly, nine per cent of respondents said they never use sunscreen at all.

Under current UK tax law, VAT is set at 20 per cent for sunscreen, as it is deemed a ‘luxury item’ rather than an essential health product. Nearly two-thirds of the people surveyed (61 per cent) said they think this tax should be removed.

“As the sun comes out everyone is keen to enjoy the fun that comes with it. However, Brits need to take sun protection seriously. Malignant melanoma is the fastest rising common cancer in the UK and is particularly high in younger people,” commented TV personality Dr Dawn Harper, who is supporting the campaign.

If you’re keen to stay protected from the sun, have you considered investing in a shade sail? Click here to find out more.

Get ready for national BBQ week

There’s nothing quite like a good barbie and next week will be the ideal time to host one, as from May 22nd to June 2nd it’s National BBQ week.

This will be the 17th time the event has taken place and it’s the perfect excuse to get your friends and family round and start cooking. More than three million BBQs were held as part of the week last year and hopefully the 2013 edition will see even more.

Read on for a few tips on how you can prepare for your barbie.

The essentials 

You obviously can’t have a BBQ without food and this is the one thing you can’t afford to get wrong. You’ll obviously need to get in the standard burgers and sausages and plenty of bread rolls, but why not mix it up with a few things a little out of the ordinary as well?

Kebabs are relatively easy and provide a lot of room for variation, but if you really want to stand out, how about trying something like pork belly or even salmon. You should check if any guests will have special eating requirements, such as being vegetarian, as there’s nothing worse than turning up to a BBQ and having nothing to eat.

After food, the next most important thing to consider is the drinks. Try to get a wide selection of alcoholic and soft drinks that will cater for everyone’s tastes.

Other considerations 

Another thing to think about is seating, ideally every guest will have their own chair, but if this isn’t possible, laying down towels or something similar on the floor is an easy alternative. Entertainment is also something to consider, creating a playlist of music tracks can really help people to relax and get in the mood.

Sun safety

If you’re having a BBQ, the chances are it’s going to be sunny and it’s important to protect yourself from sunburn. A great way to do this is installing a shade sail, which will provide a cool, shaded spot to sit and eat your food. Interested in finding out more? Click here to begin.

Kids to get creative for sun safety

Children across the UK are being encouraged to get creative to promote sun safety.

Cancer Research UK and Nivea Sun have combined to create ‘The sun has got his hat on’ competition, which will encourage school children to use the phrase in their own poem, song or even a rap to help them remember the ‘Key Steps to Sun Safety’.

The steps are:
1. Spend time in the shade, especially between 11am and 3pm
2. Wear a wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses and t-shirt
3. Wear sunscreen and re-apply regularly, especially after swimming, sweating or changing clothes
4. Drink water to stay hydrated
5. If your own shadow is shorter than yourself, this means the sun is at its strongest and protection is needed

Pupils that compete in the competition stand a chance of winning a world weather workshop for their class, as well as a weather station for their school. The winning pupil will also receive Toys R Us vouchers for their entry.

One of the best ways to ensure your child fulfils the first of the Key Steps to Sun Safety is to install a shade sail. These attractive and durable structures are regularly used in gardens, schools and other public venues to provide shade from strong sun.

Here at Shaded Nation, we only sell high quality shades that are scientifically proven to block up to 98.8 per cent of harmful UV rays, meaning you can be sure that your child is well protected when underneath one.

Staying safe in the sun is incredibly important, as sunburn is one of the major causes of skin cancer, a disease that is affecting a worrying number of people each year.

One woman who survived the condition has recently started a campaign of her own to promote awareness of the issue.

Julie Foster of Widnes, Cheshire has set up the Safe Fun In The Sun project alongside fellow survivor Laura Newland, the Runcorn and Widnes Weekly News reports.

The duo have designed sun bags that include a legionnaires hat and factor 50 sunscreen to be worn by local children at break times, during PE lessons and on school trips.