Designed By Adventure: Activeice Sun Sleeves

If you’re sick of slathering on greasy sunscreen over and over in the heat, but serious about sun protection, we’ve got your solution: Activeice Sun Sleeves. They go beyond your average sun sleeve, using fabric technology to actually cool your skin, too.

These light, breathable stretch-knit sleeves are made with Activeice technology, an innovative fabric that actively lowers skin temperature as it wicks away sweat. One reviewer explained that it feels like the sensation of chewing mint gum. So when you’re under the sun for the long haul—whether your next 50K race is in the desert, or you’re off for a casual afternoon SUP—you won’t want to leave home without them.

OR Activeice Sun Sleeves boast UPF 50+ protection, plus you don’t have to worry about reapplying sunscreen throughout the day. OR product manager Meghan Martens says the fabric feels “cool to the touch and has a soft, stretchy hand.” Instead of feeling the sun beating down on your skin—and trying to forget all the stats about sun damage and skin cancer—you’ll just feel cool shade and protection.

The Activeice Sun Sleeves come in three colors this season: high-visibility Lemongrass, more subtle Alloy, and earth-toned Coyote. And though the sleeves are designed mainly for their UPF 50+ capability—the maximum protection you can get in a garment—they are equally helpful in low-light conditions thanks to a reflective logo and the brightly colored versions. That also makes them great for runners or other adventurers in the early morning or late-night hours.

Beyond colors and cooling, one of the best features of the Activeice Sun Sleeves is their convertibility. Wear them as a traditional sleeve, employ the thumbhole and finger loop for added protection, or roll them to the wrist if you don’t need the full sleeve.

Constructed with silicone gripping at the interior bicep, a thumbhole and middle finger loop at the hand plus slight compression, the sleeves stay on the arm comfortably. To ensure you have the proper size, Martens says they “should have a snug fit. You want the sleeves fitted to ensure the Activeice cooling technology is optimized. You also don’t want the material to be too tight or constricting because this will negatively affect the sun protection.”

The sleeves also have silicone grip pads at the exterior palm. When the thumbholes are in use, these two features combine to make paddling, or any other activity with grip, more comfortable.

“I had the Activeice Sun Sleeves for a multiday canoe trip on Ross Lake in the North Cascades,” says Martens. “If I hadn’t had them, I would have for sure suffered many blisters from long days of paddling.”

By adding Activeice Sun Sleeves to your outdoor gear system, you can actually eliminate other items because the sleeves adapt to other garments—making a short-sleeve shirt double as a long-sleeve for chilly mornings, for example. And they might even let you leave the sunscreen lotion home. Ultimately that means a lower pack weight, and who doesn’t love that?

Shop Activeice Sun Sleeves now.