Curly hair at the beach

According to a new L’Oréal Research and Innovation study, skin cancer does not discriminate. It exists in all populations, regardless of skin color.

Many believe that Caucasians are at higher risk for skin cancer and that non-Caucasians are essentially immune. Because of this attitude, non-Caucasians are often diagnosed at a later stage, when the cancer is more difficult to treat.

"The lack of skin cancer recognition in patients of color is a problem and poses a serious health threat if left untreated," said Dr. Wendy Roberts, Medical Director of Desert Dermatology Skin Institute in Rancho Mirage, California. "When detected early, skin cancer is highly curable. That's why people of color need to be aware of their risk and be vigilant about protecting their skin from the sun, as well as seeking help with skin lesions that do not heal."

L’Oréal has been a leader in photoprotection research for over thirty years. The company is working to educate all races about the risks of sun exposure.

Practice Safe-Sun Exposure

The risk of skin cancer should not keep you from avoiding the sun altogether. Sunshine is a great way to get vitamin D, otherwise known as the "sunshine vitamin," which is very important to your health. Here are some tips to keep your skin beautiful and cancer-free!

  1. Apply sunscreen. Even on days where sun exposure is limited, it's important to use sunscreen. Try to find a facial moisturizer with sunscreen at the very least. One of my favorites is the Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer SPF 15. Aveeno also makes a great Daily Moisturizing Lotion With Sunscreen. If you spend a lot of time in the sun, use a product with SPF 30 and let it dry sufficiently before you head outside. Don't forget to reapply!
  2. Cloudy days still put you at risk. You might not be able to see the sun, but you're not safe from UV rays! Protect your skin as usual — don’t change your behaviors simply because of the overcast skies.
  3. Avoid peak sun hours. UV rays are typically strongest in the summer between 10 AM and 3 PM, when the sun is high in the sky. Try to limit your exposure during these high-risk hours.
  4. Wear a hat. Protect yourself from the sun in style! A wide brim straw hat will protect both your hair and your skin from harmful UV rays.
  5. Know your skin. Become familiar with your skin so that you can recognize any changes.

How do you plan to protect your skin this summer?