A Note From Dr. Laura: A World Before Sunscreen

A Time Without Sunscreen

I grew up in a world before sunscreen was widely used. In fact, we were told to go out and get a healthy tan! You might have seen those images of women with deep tans, long hair and a love for the sun. The dangers of ultraviolet radiation ( UVR) were vastly underestimated and unheard. It wasn’t the fashion, but boy were we wrong.  Having had severe blistering sunburns as a child, mostly from the shores of Lake Michigan, I know firsthand how miserable it is. Because sunscreens were not commonly used then, we had to mostly rely on using clothes to cover up and seek shade if we wanted to protect ourselves. Suffering through that is not the worst part, but I wouldn’t know that until my career as a dermatologist. The long-term consequences far outweigh the momentary moments of healing sunburns. Not only does it accelerate skin aging, but it can also double your risk of melanoma, and is the leading cause of Basal cell carcinoma and Squamous cell carcinoma aka skin cancer.

Knowledge Is Power

What motivates me most as a dermatologist, mother and now grandmother is that knowledge is power. I want to take every opportunity I can to tell people that simple changes can have lifelong effects. My goal with KLĒNSKIN is to shed light on how damaging the sun can be without holding people back from living a full and exciting life. I want to make note that the sun is also something to be celebrated - it keeps ecosystems running, provides alternative energy and has been a part of countless happy memories. It’s also these reasons why I feel so passionately about this simple solution. Applying sunscreen should be the same as brushing your teeth twice a day, washing your hands and wearing sunglasses. My hope is that not only will fewer people feel the harm of exposure to UV and UB rays, but that more will see that a simple solution exists. It’s never too late to start protecting the largest organ your body has - your skin!