As a public figure, we can imagine it’s not easy to be entirely vulnerable when opening up about your personal life, especially when it involves overcoming an illness. This is why we’re especially grateful when celebrities share their experience with skin cancer, which can easily go unnoticed if you’re not keeping an eye out and getting checked regularly. Some of our favorite celebs have opened up about their personal experiences, and shared tips for how best to approach skin cancer prevention and awareness.
Diane Keaton's Tip:
No matter how old you are, slather on the sunscreen.
Famous for her iconic film roles and signature style (let’s be real – she was doing the thin tie long before just about anyone), Keaton opened up to the LA Times about her skincare and beauty regimens, which includes wearing SPF 50 everyday. When Keaton was just 21 she was diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma, and recently battled squamous cell cancer. She underwent surgery for each diagnoses, and now carries some sage advice: it’s never too early or too late to make your skin a priority. "Back in my 20s I didn't pay attention much," Keaton says of protecting her skin. "I didn't research and didn't really care and that was stupid because it's dogged me my entire adult life, even recently. I didn't start sun care until my 40s." Let’s all take Keaton's advice and make SPF our daily routine (and maybe borrow one of her signature hats for a bit of shade?).
Michelle Monaghan’s Tip: Have loved ones check for mole growths, and listen when they’re concerned!
Actress Michelle Monaghan had a mole on the back of her calf and didn’t think to get checked until her husband persisted. “I finally went and it was skin cancer. I had quite the chunk taken out of my leg. I'm so grateful he noticed it. I clearly now realize he has a keen eye and wonder what other imperfections he's noticing!,” she told Health magazine. Monaghan is thankfully okay, and has given us the reminder that not only should you listen to your partner if they notice any mole inconsistencies, but you should keep an eye out for them as well! If you think a mole looks off, speak up, because it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Brooke Shields' Tip: Keep the baby oil and tanning at bay.
When Brooke Shields wasn’t busy making classic films and rocking her Calvin’s, she spent her 20’s on New York rooftops with her friends and tanning. Fast forward to present day, and she hasn’t tanned in 10 years. In 2009, Shields was diagnosed with skin cancer, and her perspective on skincare changed drastically. “I had a spot on my face. The doctor scraped it, and it turned out to be precancerous,” Shields told People Magazine. “I was scared.” Shields now wears SPF daily, and requires the same from her daughters, even when they try to resist. “They’re totally not fine with it. They fight me,” she said. “They do the thing where while you’re putting it on, they’re backing up. I’ll lock my legs around them … They’re really fair, and they’ve already had sunburn. It has to be every day.” Something tells us that her daughters will be thanking Shields down the road.
Hugh Jackman's Tip: Get checked regularly!
He may be famous for his role as Wolverine, but Hugh Jackman’s social media has made headlines for the way he openly talks about his ongoing battle with skin cancer. In February, Jackman posted a photo on Twitter of his bandaged nose, and revealed he was battling skin cancer for the second time. “Another basal cell carcinoma. Thanks to frequent checks & amazing doctors, all's well. Looks worse w the dressing on then off! WEARSUNSCREEN,” he wrote. You certainly don’t need more than 140 characters to understand Jackman’s message. He was first diagnosed in 2013, when his wife Deborra-Lee Furness suggested he get his nose checked. Now, he encourages his social media following to wear sunscreen and get checked regularly.
Khloe Kardashian’s Tip: Every mole is different.
When reality star and entrepreneur Khloe Kardashian noticed a mole growing on her breast, she did some online research to determine if it was normal. Once she read that it wasn’t she had a check-up with a doctor, who told her it was benign. However, this good news didn’t stop Khloe from continuingly getting her moles checked. When she noticed a large mole on her back, a checkup with her dermatologist confirmed it was skin cancer, and 8 inches of skin were removed. Kardashian now urges people to get checked frequently. Just because one more isn’t cancerous doesn’t mean others won’t be!
Do you have a tip on how best to approach skin cancer awareness? Let us know!