A staggering two out of three Australians will be diagnosed with skin cancer by the time they are 70. So if you’d like to be the one who isn’t, then you’ll need to ensure you’re applying sunscreen correctly.
And research has found that there’s a very good chance you’re doing it wrong.
The study, recently presented at the British Association of Dermatologists’ annual conference, found that on average people missed 9.5 per cent of their faces when putting on sunscreen.
Researchers asked 57 people to put sunscreen on their mugs and then took their picture with a special UV camera that highlighted where the skin was properly covered.
The most commonly neglected area? The eyes. Roughly 14 percent of study volunteers missed their eyelids, and a whopping 77 percent missed the skin between the inner eye and the nose.
Even when the participants were provided with information about skin cancer around the eyelids and asked to reapply, they still missed an average of 7.7 per cent of their face.
“Perhaps the most important thing to take away from this research is the importance of sunglasses,” Dr Kevin Hamill, from the University’s of Liverpool’s Department of Eye and Vision Science, said.
“Most people consider the point of sunglasses is to protect the eyes, specifically corneas, from UV damage, and to make it easier to see in bright sunlight. However, they do more than that, they protect the highly cancer prone eyelid skin as well.”