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Neutrogena Study Shows More Skin Cancer Education Needed

Posted: September 6, 2012

A recent Neutrogena-sponsored study has revealed that more consumer education about preventing skin cancer is needed along with debunking common skin care myths.

The national survey, commissioned by Neutrogena and executed by Harris Interactive, showed that just 13% of all women in the U.S. wear sunscreen on a daily basis and 56% of women surveyed believe the growing rate of skin cancer is due to lack of education.

"There are many misconceptions about who can get skin cancer and how you get skin cancer," says dermatologist Darrell Rigel, MD. "The fact that melanoma is the most preventable cancer yet still on the rise, shows that more education is needed."

One in five Americans will develop skin cancer in his or her lifetime, according to the American Society of Dermatologic Surgery. However, Neutrogena's study revealed that 76% of Caucasian women and 63% of Hispanic women use sunscreen to protect themselves from skin cancer. In comparison, less than half, or 46%, of African-American women use sunscreen.

A common belief is that darker skin tones offer a natural barrier from the sun's damaging rays and the Neutrogena study reveals that these myths can often lead to lax and dangerous sun safety behavior. While 76% of all women believe daily sunscreen use is important in helping prevent skin cancer, the average woman doesn’t begin using it until she is nearly 30-years-old, long after significant skin damage has already been done.