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To wonder how so many family members have avoided skin cancer?

11 replies

PlanterGents · 21/04/2021 21:29

My grandmother has/had 6 siblings! of which never ever wore SPF out in the Med sun as children and young adults. All frequent holiday makers as grown adults and still never bloody bothering with the stuff. The ignorance is baffling, and I’ve been tutted at for applying SPF to DC more than once.

However, I’m wanting to know how they (and my mum and her many cousins), all seem to have been so lax throughout life yet none of them have had skin cancer? They also have really beautiful looking skin, the sun has never aged them it seems. How? I thought so much direct sunlight exposure was hideous when you start ageing. I have a school friend who is in her 20’s but looks far older due to skin damage. Is it because she’s blonde and naturally fair? We all need sun protection so I didn’t think it would make a difference

My mum told me as a baby/child she would apply SPF ‘maybe on the first day of sun’ and then just leave it Shock I think it’s negligent in an otherwise very good parent.

OP posts:

user1471554720 · 21/04/2021 22:14

Maybe sun wasn't as strong then. My mother's friend used to go to Spain on hols in 1982 and she never found it unbearably hot. In later years she found it very hot. The ozone layer problem may be responsible for the stronger sun.


Thatisnotwhatisaid · 21/04/2021 22:17

My Mum had skin cancer a couple of years ago. She used to put oil on her skin when she was sunbathing abroad and regularly used sun beds in the 90s and even 00s. It’s probably just pot luck tbh. Thankfully has a high survival rate.


Mollymalone123 · 21/04/2021 22:19

It also does depend on skin type too-are they all fair haired-red headed with blue eyes-as those are the traits most likely to suffer- my dsis died just after 39th birthday from melanoma- my DF has recurrent basal cell carcinoma on his face and scalp- he was a red head and I have just had a possible melanoma removed yesterday.both myself and dd are blind - very fair and always burn


Mollymalone123 · 21/04/2021 22:20

Blonde not blind-oops!


Feelingconfused2020 · 21/04/2021 22:24

Not everyone who avoids sun cancer gets skin cancer just like not everyone who smokes gets lung cancer.

But they are foolish and playing with fire and it could well be too late when they finally realise.


EileenGC · 21/04/2021 22:29

What’s their skin tone?

I grew up on the Spanish coast, sun cream was only applied on particularly scorching days and if we were going to stay at the beach during lunch/early afternoon. July-August only, and the sun is pretty strong from April until about October. Kids don’t wear any at school even during summer. Maybe blonde ones have a little on.

I’m not particularly dark skinned but I honestly still don’t apply a lot of sun cream even now as an adult. Definitely not for just an outing, it only gets put on when I go to the beach earlier than 4pm. I think if you have fair skin then the situation changes a bit.


Cocomarine · 21/04/2021 22:32

Simply that:

  • sun exposure doesn’t equal skin cancer, just increases risk
  • there are other risk / protective factors too

listershologram · 21/04/2021 22:36

We are a family of pale skinned red heads with one exception who has dark brown hair and olive skin. She's the only one who has had skin cancer.


Angrypregnantlady · 21/04/2021 22:37

Luck is my guess.
I burn if the bulbs in the supermarket are too bright. My dad puts oil on his skin and never burns. Peoples skins just different.
We've also noticed that since DH went from working outside to working inside his skin has become more delicate and he burns more, so I guess they build up more resistance to the sun by regular exposure? Although I don't think that prevents cancer. I think we check ourselves more though and pick up on skin cancers more. I imagine there's a lot of people with skin cancer that just haven't noticed it, I don't think it's always fast growing and lethal. Not sure though. I've often seen older people's skin with sores and though they should get that checked.


PlanterGents · 21/04/2021 22:46

Hmm, family and myself are all very olive skinned (due to heritage), tan very easily. But I didn’t think that really protected you very much, if British skin foundation is anything to go by

OP posts:

shouldistop · 21/04/2021 22:50

Genes. It only increases risk, so if your risk genetically is very low then sunbathing won't just happen to give toy cancer.

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