Finally, summer has come! The sun shines from morning ’til night and it’s tempting to go spend the afternoon at the pool, the beach or the park.

But wait–are you protected against harmful UVA and UVB rays? Do you have a plan to prevent sunburns for you and your family?

Some stats on skin cancer

Did you know that skin cancer is the most common cancer? Unsurprisingly, it’s also the most preventable. Between 80 and 90% of all skin cancers are caused by exposition to UV rays. In Canada, there are 80,000 new cases of skin cancer diagnosed every year.

Skin cancer is easily preventable–it’s all about taking the necessary steps before heading outside. Here are some easy rules to follow.

ALWAYS wear sunscreen

A lot of people cheat on this one, but it’s the simplest one to follow. Adding sunscreen to your daily routine–even if you’re just headed to the office–will make this easier.

Wearing sunscreen is especially important if you spend a lot of time outside, but even a half-hour walk on your lunch hour can damage your skin. There are excellent moisturizers that offer sun protection as well, and it’s easily worn under makeup.

Avoid tanning salons

Using tanning salons before the age of 35 increases your chances of skin cancer by 75%. Honestly, the idea that a tan is healthy and sexy is a bit of a lie. A tan is simply the reaction of your skin against UV rays. The rest is just a perception that you certainly don’t need to follow.

If you REALLY want to look tanned without the risk, use a self-tanning spray or lotion–although we’d really prefer you didn’t since those are filled with harmful chemicals. Your skin will still tan with sunscreen on, so you can go ahead and spend time outside anyway.

Take care of your skin

If you take good care of your skin–with sunscreen, certified organic skin products, and spa treatments–you’ll want it to stay healthy and safe. Your contact with the world is through you skin, so why ruin it all because of false perceptions of beauty or a preventable sunburn?