Skin cancer rates are on the rise – Can this wristband help?

With skin cancer rates on the rise it’s more important than ever to use sunscreen when exposed to the sun and take preventative measures to avoid sunburn. Malignant melanoma incidence rates have increased more than fivefold since the mid 1970s and sunbeds and cheap holidays abroad are blamed for this increase. 

The problem is that people are not really aware of the dangers of the sun and for many getting a tan and looking ‘cool’ is more important than health, especially with younger generations. Yes, tan may look great on you but do you know this causes skin damage which makes you look older years later? Also, if you sunburn when trying to get that tan, it doubles your risk of getting a skin cancer.

To combat this worrying health concern Smartsun UK have come up with the UV indicator wristband* which changes colour depending on whether you’re safe to stay in the sun, should reapply suncream or should avoid the sun for the rest of the day.

SmartSun UV indicator wristband

How does the Smartsun wristband work?

First of all, this wristband does not contain an SPF and wearing it on its own won’t protect you from the sun. I’ve worn it once (PR sample) to test it out thinking that it would tell me when to apply the sunscreen once I am out and about but it actually it does not work like that (silly me!). You should apply the sunscreen before going out to enjoy the sun and at the same time when you are slathering your body with the sun cream, apply it to the Smartsun wristband. The wristbands are waterproof and suitable for everyone to wear – from babies to grandparents!

Perfect for holidays, outdoor sports or if you are out and about on a sunny day.

The Smartsun wristband measures the amount of UVA and UVB radiation you are exposed to over the course of the day and it will turn from yellow to beige once it’s time to top up on sun protection. If the UV radiation is really high it’s time to avoid the sun and the wristband will tell you this by turning pink.

Wristband colours 

Developed by researchers at the University of Strathclyde and manufactured and tested in Sweden, you can rely on the safety and accuracy of the Smartsun wristband.

Just to note that this is a one-use UV indicator and the colour changes are not reversible – once it turns pink it will not turn back to beige. I believe this is where its weakness lies. What happens once you reapplied the sunscreen (as indicated by a wristband) and you’ve been in the sun for another hour or two? The wristband won’t work as it has already turned beige to let you know that it’s time to reapply the sun cream. To be reminded again you will have to put a brand new wristband on.

Conclusion

I love what the Smartun wristband is trying to do – to tackle the increasing skin cancer rates, (although it has its own downsides). I believe people who are wearing it will pay more attention to how often they apply the sunscreen and when to avoid the sun, which is a great thing – this is exactly what’s needed to get those skin cancer rates down. I think this wristband could be very popular with kids who love bright colours. The kids could actually remind their parents to reapply their sunscreen. Imagine your child saying: “Mummy, look it’s different colour now”?

If you like the idea, get your pack of Smartun Wristbands on Amazon for only £4.99 (5 in a pack).

References:

http://www.cancerresearchuk.org/health-professional/cancer-statistics/statistics-by-cancer-type/skin-cancer
http://www.nhs.uk/news/2014/04April/Pages/Cheap-holidays-increased-melanoma-rates.aspx
http://www.cancerresearchuk.org/health-professional/cancer-statistics/statistics-by-cancer-type/skin-cancer/risk-factors

*PR sample. As always, my honest opinions provided.

2 Comments

  1. Hi Petra,

    Loved finding out about this wristband through your blog – it’s definitely a step in the right direction for preventing skin damage! Of course it would be much, much more useful if it was able to be “reset” – perhaps this could be created in the future.

    Hope you’re well!

    Besma (Curiously Conscious)

    1. Hi Besma! Yes, it would be ideal if it was able to somehow reset itself but let’s hope they create something smarter in the future.
      I am very well, thanks, I hope you too!

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