Your susceptibility to sunburns is strongly dependent on your skin tone. People with red hair, green eyes and freckled skin are under the highest risk of contracting skin damage.
In recent years, the incidence and severity of sunburn has increased worldwide, especially in the southern hemisphere, because of damage to the ozone layer.
Protecting yourself is the best you can do. Clothing is by far the most effective defense against the sun. Avoid wearing shorts and T-shirts; use long-sleeved baggy clothing instead, which will keep you just as cool while avoiding sunburn. The back of your neck is especially prone to sunburn, so get a shirt with a collar and wear the collar upwards. Sun lotions should only be used as a last resort where clothing isn't possible or practicable, on the back of your hands, or while you are in the water. The skin can be hydrated by applying topical products containing aloe vera and/or vitamin E, which reduce inflammation.