Written by Louise Dunne

5 of the best garden parasols for throwing shade

With the increasing number of heatwaves in the UK and Cancer Research UK (CRUK) reporting higher rates of skin cancer, it’s time to take sun seriously and looks at some of the best parasols…

‘Sun safety is not just for when you’re going abroad, the sun can be strong enough to burn in the UK from the start of April to the end of September,’ says CRUK’s Health Information Manager, Karis Betts. ‘We want to encourage people to embrace their natural look and protect their skin from UV damage by seeking shade, covering up and regularly applying sunscreen with at least SPF 15 and four or five stars.’

This means it’s more important than ever to have the best parasol that works around your lifestyle and provides you with the most shade possible. So, if your average parasol isn’t doing it for you, try one of these innovative parasols instead.

1. Cantilever parasol, IKEA

Have you ever been in the position where your parasol doesn’t fit around your garden furniture, so is either placed to the side where it’s not fully covering everyone, or awkwardly sitting in the middle? The best parasols in this situation are cantilevered, ie. hanging from an outstretched arm. This cantilever parasol with base from IKEA, £315, is the solution to that as it can be put to the side, out of the way of you and your guests, but shade a larger part of the seating area.

best parasols: ikea cantilever parasol hanging over wooden garden furniture with white cushions and white walls

Photo: IKEA

2. Half-parasol, Wayfair

Another problem-solving parasol is this one from Wayfair, £51.99. Half-parasols are best for those with small balconies and terraces, or for garden furniture that is pushed up against a wall. It’s also good for putting in front of windows to stop the sun’s rays beaming in and heating up the house.

best parasols: half parasol against purple wall with french windows

Photo: Wayfair

3. Double canopy parasol, Wayfair

On the other hand, if it’s a larger parasol you need, why not go for this double canopy parasol from Wayfair, £109.99? This saves you from buying two and means you don’t keep having to move it as the sun moves over the garden. Just make sure you have plenty of weight on the base for this one.

blue double canopy parasol on grass in a large garden with no furniture

Photo: Wayfair

4. Sage green parasol, Dunelm

This freestanding cantilever parasol from Dunelm comes in a serene shade of pale sage. It has an easy-to-use crank to help adjust the position of the 3m canopy and comes with a base, although quarter parasol weights are required to keep it stable (not recommended for use in extremely windy conditions). Priced £69 and available via ufurnish.com.

Pale sage cantilever parasol with grey stand over pale sage sun lounger in modern garden

Photo: Dunelm

5. Beach parasol with side panels, Amazon

Having appropriate shade for a trip to the beach, or a picnic, is just as important as having shade in your garden. With this parasol from Amazon, £29.99, you get the best of both worlds. Use it as a standard parasol at home or spiked it into the sand on a beach. The side panels can be attached and secured to the ground using the nails and hooks provided, keeping you sheltered from all angles. Plus, the inner silver coating also has a UPF level of 50, offering even more protection.

best parasols: beach parasol with side panels also suitable for garden, photographed on white background

Photo: Amazon