When Evelynn Escobar visited one of America's most famous national parks for the first time — Zion National Park in southwest Utah, to be exact — she was confused by the stares she received from fellow hikers. As a Black and indigenous woman, she felt like an outlier amid other outdoorsy (and, well, Caucasian) types. So, she started Hike Clerb.
The L.A.-based non-profit, now in its sixth year, bills itself as a collective of women of color who are interested in delighting in the wonders of nature. On a deeper scale, Hike Clerb is dedicated to promoting representation within the outdoor space (there's a very real diversity gap that exists in the hiking industry).
"Hike Clerb offers a safe space to be vulnerable, to play, and to have an inherent sisterhood," says Escobar, who also works as a content creator and nail artist. "The evolution of [Hike Clerb] has been liberating for myself and others. It's shown the world that we — as Black, indigenous, women of color — deserve to take up space and reconnect with the land as a tool for intergenerational healing.”
Restorative properties of nature notwithstanding, the group has plain old fun, too, with activities like bird-watching, kayaking, beach-strolling, and even overnight camping excursions in various cities across the U.S. and Canada.
Naturally, such itineraries call for the right kind of gear, so careful planning is key. Along with essentials like hiking shoes, keys, water, and, of course, an assortment of snacks, you'll always find sunscreen in her fanny pack — and more specifically, Coppertone's new Every Tone Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50, a new innovation designed specifically to meet the needs of folks with melanated skin.
Escobar hasn't always been diligent about sun protection: Growing up, she thought sunburns were rare for people of color, and also, she felt that most of the SPFs on the market catered toward non-melanated skin. But now, she understands the importance of protecting her skin from the sun while she's on — and off — the trail, especially as someone with sensitive skin. Every Tone not only rubs on clear (no dreaded white cast here), but the formula is lightweight, vitamin E-rich, and oil-free — a must-have for anyone who spends a great deal of time outdoors.
To learn more about Escobar, from her work with Hike Clerb to how she stays healthy, safe, and protected while navigating the outdoors, check out the Reel Talk, No Shade video, above.