Dermatologists are currently warning the populace against a new trend in skin decoration called sunburn art. Doctors report that this new trend is dangerous because as a form of sunburn it increases the risk of melanoma which is the most common kind of skin cancer in the United States.
Sunburn art is created through the decorative use and placement of sunscreen on the skin to create a specific symbol or design while exposing the rest of their skin to direct sunlight. They intentionally get extreme sunburns in order to highlight the design or mark of choice.
Physicians state that this activity can increase the risk of melanoma by as much as 50 percent. They add that it causes the skin to prematurely age.
Dermatologists report that extreme exposure to the sun’s rays can cause “fragmentation of collagen”. Collagen is what makes humans look fresh and young. Ergo, if fragmentation occurs it can cause the skin to look old and dull.
The experts highly recommend that before venturing out into the sun, people apply a sunblock with a minimum of SPF 30. They further suggest that people reapply the sunblock once every three or four hours according to the manufacturer’s directions. They also note that people should use cream rather than spray as spray does not cover the skin entirely which renders it less effective.
The sudden popularity of sunburn art in the US has garnered enough concern that the Skin Cancer Foundation recently released a press statement. They foundation “strongly advises the public to avoid sunburns at all costs.”
Senior vice president, Dr. Deborah S. Sarnoff, concludes: “A sunburn is not only painful – it’s dangerous, and comes with consequences. Sunburns cause DNA damage to the skin, accelerate skin aging, and increases your lifetime skin cancer risk. In fact, sustaining five or more sunburns in youth increase lifetime melanoma risk by 80 percent. On average, a person’s risk for melanoma doubles if he or she has had more than five sunburns.”