Skin Cancer Awareness Month: Facts, Best Sunscreens & Chic UPF Hats

May is National Skin Cancer Awareness Month and studies show that 52% of American Women grade themselves a C or lower on their sun care habits. Melanoma is easy to prevent if you are careful about sun exposure and protection.

“About 90% of nonmelanoma skin cancers and 65% of melanoma cases are associated with exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun,” says Perry Robins, MD, President of The Skin Cancer Foundation. “Everyone, regardless of skin color, should make staying safe in the sun a priority and incorporate sun protection measures into their daily life.”

Now that the sun is finally shining, it's time to break out the protective hats and sunscreens. Read on for more...

We all know it's important to protect your skin to reduce cancer-causing sun damage so wear a hat when outside this Spring or Summer. Not only will you stay cooler, but you will protect yourself from the suns harmful rays. I really like the hats by Coolibar--they have a large selection, great prices and UPF protection of 50+. 

The Shapeable Travel Sun Hat style below looks good on most women and has the perfect sized brim that you can bend to best suit your style. It's packable too!

Coolibar Shapeable Travel Sun Hat, UPF 50+, $45 (shown in tan)

There are so many sunscreens to choose from so how do you know which ones are best? I have researched and tried just about every sun block product out there. Below are my top five picks in terms of sun protection and how they feel on the skin.

1. La Roche-Posay Ultra-light Sunscreen Lotion Spray goes on sheer white (blends right away), is fast absorbing and has a silky finish. I am obsessed with this water resistant sunscreen for the body--it feels moisturizing yet weightless on the skin. The combination of patented high efficacy sun filters and powerful antioxidants make it the ultimate in sun protection. It's also great for sensitive skin and fragrance free.

2. L'Oreal Quick Dry Sheer Finish Spray 30 goes on sheer white and is fragrant. This oil-free and water resistant spray dries super quick and delivers long-lasting, broad spectrum protection. A nice and effective sunscreen that can be found in the drugstore.

As part of the L’Oréal Paris USA partnership with the Melanoma Research Alliance (MRA), the brand has launched "It’s THAT Worth It™ - a global public health call-to-action that urges women of all skin tones to prevent melanoma by using sunscreen and to help save lives by supporting melanoma research for a cure.  The campaign features celebrity spokespeople Eva Longoria, Aimee Mullins, Lea Michele and skin cancer survivor Diane Keaton.

By joining the "It’s THAT Worth It™ Thunderclap, you can lend support and help stop melanoma through prevention and research.  As a thank you, L'Oréal Paris will make a donation to MRA of $1 for each supporter who signs up for the Thunderclap and $1 for each L’Oréal Paris Advanced Suncare product sold in the U.S.

Visit to join the movement. Watch as everyone’s messages are simultaneously shared around the world on May 20th.


The Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protection Spray is perfect for on the go application and for using in hard to reach areas like your back. I use it while on vacation since it's water resistant, non greasy, and offers great protection and it's available in department stores and at Sephora

4. Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen, SPF 55 goes on like a creamy moisturizer, is light-weight and leaves a non-shiny finish to your skin. I love that you can find the broad spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen in almost any drugstore (I like to buy it in bulk)! It's fast absorbing and water resistant for up to 80 minutes. 

5. SkinCeuticals Sheer Physical UV defense Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 50 offers powerful broad-spectrum sun protection. It's lightweight and goes on transparent so it's perfect to use on your face. Contains 5% zinc oxide and 6% titanium dioxide and is gentle for sensitive skin. Dermatologists recommended.

According to the American Melanoma Foundation, here are some facts about Melanoma:

  • One American dies of melanoma every hour.
  • Melanoma is the most common form of cancer for adolescents and young adults 15-29 years old. The torso is the most common location for developing melanoma for females in this age group.
  • Besides breast cancer, young women under the age of 39 have a higher probability of developing melanoma than any other cancer.
  • Exposure to tanning beds before the age of 35 increases the risk of melanoma by 75 percent.
  • More than one million people visit tanning salons every day. Of these, approximately 71 percent are girls and young women ages 16-29.
  • One in 58 men and women will be diagnosed with melanoma in their lifetime.