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Cool your deck or patio off to maximize comfort while enjoying a beautiful day! Everyone enjoys being outside on a nice warm day but it is not always a good idea to be sitting in the direct sunlight without some type of shade source.

Not only does the direct sun make you sweaty and uncomfortable but the UV rays are very harmful for your skin. Ultraviolet rays can cause premature aging of the skin, suppression of your immune system, damage to your eyes, and skin cancer. However, sunlight can be beneficial to the human body but only in moderation. Being out in the sun can help to decrease depression, increase your vitamin D production and is also used in the therapy for psoriasis.

Protect yourself, your family, and guests from the effects of UV rays while outdoors. If your deck or patio is lacking a source of shade no worries it is an easy fix. Check out these easy shade source options…

Add a Patio Umbrella

A super easy solution is to just add an umbrella to your patio area. Umbrellas are good for a convenient shade source. Just open it up when it is needed and close it when not in use. You can either purchase an umbrella to place in a patio table or there are stand-alone umbrellas so you place it where it is needed. One thing you will need to consider though is an umbrella is easily damaged during high winds. It would need to be taken down if a storm was blowing in or if you live in an area where high winds are common you may want to consider another shade source.

Pop Up a Canopy

Add a more stable and sturdy shade source with a simple Pop-Up Canopy. Whether you want to seek shelter from the sun or rain a Pop-up Canopy will give you the cover you need. They come in a variety of colors and sizes to fit your needs perfectly. These canopies are heavier than a patio umbrella and they offer a larger coverage area. You will want to make sure that a canopy is anchored well during high winds so it does not incur damage or become a kite blowing through your yard. With a pop-up canopy you are not only getting a shade source for your deck or patio but a portable shelter that you can take on outings for shelter.

Add Flare with a Garden Canopy

Beautiful, Practical, and Portable! Enjoy a perfect afternoon relaxing in the shade under a garden canopy in your lush garden. Adding a garden canopy not only adds a shade source to your deck or patio but it also will add to the overall feel of the outdoor space. Some garden canopies feature screen sides that can tie back for an elegant look or untie to form an airy yet attractive barrier from the bugs. These canopies are great for outdoor events or for everyday use. This type of canopy can be temporary or leave it up for use through the whole season.

Unique Shade Design with Shade Sails

Just can’t find a shade source that will fit your deck or compliment your outdoor area, consider a Shade Sail. You can use just one or layer multiple shade sails to accommodate the area that you want to cover. Each shade sail is made from a breathable fabric that is specially treated so it will not to break down in the sun but will still offer you generous protection from harmful UVA and UVB rays. Shade sails are available in an array of sizes and colors so you can add create a unique look to your yard. Shade Sail Canopies are a very versatile and attractive way to provide that just right spot to relax and socialize with friends and family.

Cover Your Deck with an Awning

Looking for a more permanent shade source for your deck or patio? Or is you deck just too small for other shade sources? Awnings are a good source for full shading a compact deck or offering partial shade on larger decks. The fabric is resistant to tears and sagging making it sturdy enough to withstand rain, hail and strong winds. Awnings are available in permanent and retractable models. Retractable awnings allow for a convenient way to let the sunlight in when you want to unlike a permanent awning structure. Retractable awnings also roll up quickly when you don’t need them and there is no need for storage.

Photo Courtesy of European Rolling Shutters

Create a more Natural Appearance

Do you want a shade structure that is permanent but that still gives a natural feel to your deck or patio? Building a pergola will do just that. You can also purchase manufactured pergolas if you do not need it to fit an abnormal sized deck. The purpose of a pergola is to allow vining plants to cover it creating a beautiful shade source. Vines that cover a trellis along the side of the pergola will also help block the rising or setting sun. A handmade pergola can be made from inexpensive treated lumber and then stained to match your deck. They look great and still cost less than manufactured options.

Give your family protection from the sun so they can still enjoy a beautiful day out doors without getting all sweaty and hot. Keep your deck cooler and screen out harmful ultraviolet rays with one of these easy options for shade.