I’ve had skin cancer removed twice, and I’m not a sun worshipper.
My family has a history of skin that doesn’t do well in the sun. There are three major kinds of skin cancer: basal, squamous and melanoma. Mine was squamous, which has a potential to metastasize. Mine did not. My symptoms included a spot that itched and bled and scabbed and covered over, then repeated the sequence. I watched the first time my dermatologist removed the cone-shaped wedge of flesh. The second time, I didn’t. But I caught the second one much sooner.
When I was a kid in Roanoke, Virginia, I couldn’t wait for summer. My mom started working outside the home when I was in the fourth grade, but my parents made sure I was water safe at a very young age. As soon as summer hit, I mounted my bike and headed for the community pool where I took advanced swimming lessons, did flips and stood on my hands underwater, played Marco Polo and when I was water-logged, Four Square. It took me a long time to be any good at that game. There was no effective sunscreen when I was growing up and I couldn’t have been less interested in sitting in the shade. My family also visited the beach every year. Again, no effective sunscreen available.
My dermatologist said my skin damage had probably occurred during my first twenty years. So, I guess that ship has sailed. Now, I need to protect myself as much as I can (and still enjoy life).
So here are some things I do:
I put sunscreen on in the bathroom when I’m naked. Yup. If I take a shower, I slather it on as soon as I dry myself off. That way, I’m covered and there are no places left uncovered. I like to use 50spf or better. Titanian dioxide and CLEAR Zinc Oxide are great. I’ve given up on tanning because: I DON’T TAN. I SPOT.
There are also new body lotions that contain SPF. Unfortunately, you can get sun damage even while driving!
I found a hat that I love. I don’t really love ball caps, but I got a western hat during my visit to the Grand Canyon. It has a cord that keeps it from flying off my head and it doesn’t flatten my hair. YAY! So find yourself a hat you like and you’ll be more likely to wear it.
Shade is a good thing. Funny thing on the cruise I took with my fam, the twenty-somethings were all seeking the shade. I was pleased to observe that. There’s more than one way to get some shade. Here’s a cool new umbrella/shade you can fasten to your chair!
Get your skin checked by a dermatologist.
If you must tan, fake it. You can get spray tans these days to make you look tan. You can also use daily tanning lotion. Some of it even has SPF. You can also put on bronzer.
Clothing. Here is a website with clothing that can block out the rays.
So that’s my PSA. Take care of your skin. I’m also very excited to announce that my new book, THE PRINCESS AND THE OUTLAW is out now! I hope you’ll check it out. This is a very special book to me!<3 You can take a peek at it here!
And my question for you is What are your tips for protecting your skin from the sun?