Meet Igor Santos, the mastermind and driving force behind UV Action, the maker of high quality sun protection clothing. Igor lives in Recife with his wife, Naianna, and their two young children, Henrique and Livia. Recife, located on the Atlantic Ocean in Northeast Brazil, is often described as "The Venice of Brazil" because of all the canals and rivers that traverse the city and the many bridges that dot the landscape. Recife is also home to beautiful beaches, including the popular Boa Viagem Beach and the world famous Porto de Galinhas Beach about forty miles to the south.
Racife is very close to the equator, only eight degrees away in latitude. The closer a place is to the equator, the more UV radiation it receives. This is because the sun rays have less distance to travel before they hit the ground so less of the UV is absorbed by the atmosphere and more of it hits the human skin. Igor's location puts him in the perfect position to know all about the devastating effects that UV radiation can have the human body: melanoma, other forms of skin cancer, severe sunburn, cataracts, DNA mutation, and the symptoms of premature aging like leathering of the skin, brown spots, and wrinkles.
Igor Started UV Action Because of Concern For His Children and His Family Background
Igor began his experience in the clothing industry when he was just a little boy. During summer vacations and school holidays, Igor would work along side his mother in her clothing business. It was during these formative years that he learned valuable lessons that serve him well in his UV Action business.
Igor's mother, Elizabete Santos, grew up loving to sew and making pretty dresses for her dolls. As an adult, Elizabete had her hands full being a school teacher and a mother to three children. However, she still dreamed of starting her own clothing business, and in 1986, she took the plunge! She had to work very hard to get the business going but she was determined to offer the high quality clothing products and amazing customer service at a time when there was a paucity of both. She would look for only the best raw materials to use in her clothing, even if she had to search far away in another region of the country to find them. Elizabete could be described as a "people person" and her customers loved her because she showed genuine concern for their needs and always made sure to take care of them.
Elizabete quickly became well respected and trusted by her customers and everyone in the clothing industry. With her business, she started out making women's clothes and soon added school uniforms and work uniforms. It wasn't long before her clothing business became one of the biggest in Brazil, producing approximately 400,000 pieces a year! In 1998, Igor joined his mother's business full time and he was responsible for expanding their clothing line to include outdoor sports clothing and polo shirts.
Customers for the outdoor sports clothing line included many hardcore outdoor people who spent many hours a week in the blistering sun. These included surfers, rock climbers, hikers, backpackers, trail runners, joggers, kayakers, paddle boarders, windsurfers, sailors, horseback riders, snow boarders, snow skiers, and water skiers. They all had a common problem: they were getting bombarded with hazardous UV radiation!
In response to the needs of these customers who loved the outdoors, Igor and his mother offered their FIRST SUN SHIRT in 2004. It was made from polyester with UV protection washed into the fabric. It was highly innovative for the time as very few companies in the world were offering sun protection clothing at that time, although people were beginning to learn how harmful UV radiation was. This FIRST SUN SHIRT was a big hit because it solved a MAJOR PROBLEM! However, the manufacturer of the polyester soaked with UV protection decided to discontinue making this fabric so Igor and his mother had to discontinue their very popular sun shirt. However, it was with much sadness that they did so and Igor never gave up the idea of bringing it back.
Elizabete's steadfast work ethic and her never ending commitment to both the quality of her products and to the best interest of her clients rubbed off on Igor in a big way! He proudly carries these same traits into his Action UV business today. With the full support of his wife, parents, siblings, and his entire extended family, he carries on the family tradition.
Igor started his UV Action business in 2012, the same year he became a first time father, when his beautiful baby boy, Henrique, was born. Like what happens to so many new parents, Igor's whole perspective on life changed when his son was born. As it turns out, this new parental perspective would would be the final impetus for Igor starting UV Action that year.
Holding Henrique in his arms at the beach one day, with the full sunshine beaming down on his delicate baby skin, Igor began to have flashbacks of his own childhood. He remembered how he, his older brother, his younger sister, and their cousins would play on the Porto de Galinhas Beach for hours. They would be having so much fun, they wouldn't want to stop and let their parents reapply sunscreen. As a result, they would inevitably get seriously sunburned, rendering them unable to play outside the next day. He also recalled the agony of the sunburn and how he wouldn't even want to move he was in so much pain.
Igor became immediately concerned for his son. He wanted to spare him the pain he had gone through as a child after intensive exposure to UV-B radiation. Moreover, he was all too aware of the harmful effects of UV-A, causing skin cancer and early aging and that children get about eighty percent of all UV radiation they'll get in their entire lifetime. Igor was compelled to take action with more motivation than he had ever had before.
UV Action was started with humble beginnings and a grand vision. The manufacture of UV Action sun protection clothing started using materials paid for with a generous investment from his father. However, with the lessons he had learned from his mother, and the moral support and encouragement from his wife, Igor's humble start to UV Action quickly blossomed into a very successful sun protection clothing business.
Given Igor's history, it should be no surprise that the mission of UV Action is to produce the best possible line of UV protection clothing on the market! Like his mother, Igor searches for the best raw materials he can find. He is also quick to make changes when he determines a real need for it.
Igor is also fully dedicated to using the best UV protection technology he can find. In fact, he has been instrumental in creating a whole new line of UV protection fabrics that provide PERMANENT UV PROTECTION without washing out. The UV protection is actually embedded directly into the fiber so it doesn't wash out when one enters the water, sweats, or washes the garment. At the same time, Igor has been fully committed to ensuring the fabric is soft, silky, and comfortable on the skin.
It must be in the genes because Igor is known as an affable person who has deep concern for his customers and everyone he deals with in his business. He has made a solid commitment to providing the highest quality customer service possible and he takes every measure he can to ensure his customers are fully satisfied. One good example of this is his ability to truly listen to suggestions made by his customers and potential customers. He is very good at identifying the needs and desires of his customers and finding a way to incorporate these into his new products. For example, he is currently developing a looser fitting beach cover up for women.
In 2014, Igor and Naianna had a beautiful baby girl, Livia. Like her brother, Livia immediately filled Igor's heart with overwhelming love and his mind with a father's protective instinct. He decided to add to his UV Action product line beautiful beach wear for his little daughter and all other little girls who needed protection from UV but with a style and design that would be more popular with girls. To this end, he developed printed one piece and two piece swim suits for girls as well as printed long sleeve sun shirts for girls. These items are Livia approved of course!
Igor considers himself very fortunate to have such strong support from his family in establishing UV Action and in achieving the highest standards possible. While his father does not work in the same industry, he believes in his son's sun protection clothing line and was an early investor. Igor's wife, Naianna, also supports his efforts to protect their own children and other people from UV radiation. Igor's mother's entrepreneurial spirit and dedication to the highest possible standards was passed on to him and affects the way he does business every single day.
About the UV Action Name
Since people always want to know how a business got its name, we thought we'd tell you.
Igor "took action" after his children were born to protect them from harmful UV radiation. It is his hope and desire that his UV Action product line allows other parents to take the same type of protective action on behalf of their children. He also hopes that everyone will take action to protect themselves from the harmful effects of the UV radiation.
UV Action is a very fitting name for a very noble cause!