Skin Cancer Action Week

With 2 in 3 Australians diagnosed with skin cancer by the age of 70, being sun safe must become a priority. These statistics are a reminder of how important it is to continuously keep up with the different forms of sun protection and to check our family and friends are doing the same. 

 

Did you know that cancer is the leading cause of death in Australia? Good use of sun protection can prevent most skin cancers. There are five main forms of sun protection and we want to refresh you on these before summer arrives!

1. SLIP on sun protective clothing

Clothing that will cover as much skin as possible is the best choice to avoid rays touching your bare skin. Dark colours attract more UV radiation, so wearing light colours provides greater protection and will also leave you feeling less hot and bothered on a summers day! Light and tight woven materials are practical for sun protection, the most popular being cotton and linen.

 

2. SLOP on at least SPF30

30 is the lowest SPF of suncreen we should be purchasing. Questions we need to ask include, is it water resistant? Does it have a valid expiry date? And does it meet Australian standards (AUST L or AS/NZS 2604:98 on the label)? Be sensible when applying sunscreen, think about the time you apply to when you are sun exposed – wait at least 15 minutes to ensure sunscreen has been absorbed by the skin. Don’t forget to reapply after swimming in water!


3. SLAP on a hat

A hat will cast shade over more than just your face if you choose a wide brimmed hat. A cap will not protect the back of your neck or even your ears, so wearing a legionnaire (hat with a flap at the back) or a bucket hat leaves no part of the head or neck exposed to the sun.   

 

4. SEEK shade

Not sitting in direct sunlight is of course an effective way to prevent sun exposure. Take an umbrella to the beach or pick a tree to sit under at your next summer picnic! Another important note to take – a selfie is much easier to take and view in the shade!

 

5. SLIDE on a pair of sunglasses

A pair of sunnies will protect your eyes against UV radiation. Before purchasing, check the eye protection factor is 10. Bigger sunglasses that cover more of your face are the best choice for a sunny day, however they need to be worn over a face of sunscreen!

Sunglasses are a fashion accessory, why not look good while deflecting those UV rays?