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Southerner and the City - Protecting Your Skin from the Sun and Hugh Jackman's Pure Sun Defense
May 29, 2015

With Memorial Day behind me, my thoughts have turned toward warm weather, sun dresses and sandals. And with that comes my reluctance to exposing my really pasty white body on the streets on New York City. It’s a weird process to quickly ditch with massive amounts of winter gear that I’ve been sporting for months and instead opt for lighter, brighter clothing and a hat. But I’ll take it and my white legs, too. Although I’m committed to doing a better job of protecting my skin and Corbin’s too.

I’ve invested a lot of resources into keeping my skin looking great and fighting wrinkles a.k.a. aging! Those day of my youth spent at ball parks and swimming pools in Arkansas without wearing ANY sun screen have caught up with me and probably you, too, right? Years ago, no one in my family was too concerned about sun screen, hats or sun glasses during those long hot summer days or any other day for that matter.

My Granny was the only exception. She insisted on working in her garden wearing pants, a long sleeved shirt and a huge straw hat even when it was nearly 100 degrees. I always worried she would keel over in her garden due to the heat from all of the clothes she was wearing and not the actual outside temperature. She lived to be nearly 90 and had the prettiest skin of any woman that age that I’ve ever known. So you see, covering up really does pay off.

As a mom, I’m teaching and showing Corbin how to take care of himself, too. That also includes teaching him about protecting his skin. We’ve been doing more of that recently after I heard Hugh Jackman talk about his own skin cancer and what he’s doing to prevent it in kids.

Jackman hosted a talk with The Moms and discussed very candidly his skin cancer story. He found the first spot while on a movie set. The make-up artist suggested he get a spot checked out. He did and turns out, it was cancer. He later had a three more spots removed.

The Wolverine says growing up in Australia, spending time on the beach and playgrounds and not protecting his skin properly, set the stage for his basal cell carcinoma. Now, in Australia it is a law that all school children wear sunscreen and a hat when they are outside because of the high risk of skin cancer. With the ozone layer being thinner over Australia, the sun is more intense. Jackman told the audience that in Australia 1 in 3 people will get skin cancer. In the United States, 1 in 5 kids will get skin cancer and if they don’t wear sunscreen the rate goes up even more. You can get the details in the video on my YouTube page.

Jackman has teamed up with Pure Sun Defense to promote wearing sun screen. The line of sunscreen is available at retailers around the country. One of the key elements of his campaign and the sunscreen is that it is affordable. Sunscreen varies widely in price and ingredients and can be cost prohibitive if you are on a tight budget. I’d rather pay for the prevention instead of the intervention when it comes to skin cancer.

With Jackman’s encouragement, I have already seen my dermatologist for a skin check and had two small moles removed. In the meantime, I’ve been wearing not only my sunscreen on my face, but also making sure I wear it all over. Corbin is doing the same and asking me questions about his small freckles. It’s been a teachable moment for both of us and the start of a healthy habit of wearing sunscreen daily.

Keep up with DJ by following her on her blog at www.iamdjduckworth.com Facebook at I Am DJ Duckworth YouTube @Iamdjduckworth @iamdjduckworth on Twitter @djduckworth on Instagram. DJ lives in New York City with her son and the world’s most amazing Dachshund, Leo!

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