The Spanish say that only mad dogs and Englishmen sit in the midday sun – an adage that, comically, rings true. Less funny, however, is the increasing risk of skin cancer (not to mention premature ageing) caused by such pastimes.
According to data from Cancer Research, melanoma skin cancer rates are up 119 per cent, affecting as many as one in ten people. Worse yet is that incidences now kill more people in the UK than in Australia (you know, where they actually have year-round sun), standing at a death toll of over 2,000 per year.
We get it; everyone wants that David Gandy fresh-out-of-a-boat-in-white-budgie-smugglers look, but is it really worth getting at the risk of your health when there are so many safe, viable alternatives to ending up like a leather sofa?
Fortunately, if caught early enough, melanoma can be treated, so it pays to know the signs. Any new, growing or unsymmetrical moles should be taken to a doctor stat, especially if the edges are jagged or a darker brown in colour.
Of course, the best medicine is prevention. Always lotion up whenever in the sun (yes, that includes the UK) with a broad spectrum lotion packing no less than 15SPF, reapplying throughout the day and taking shade when necessary.
Future you will thank you.