May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month
April showers may bring May flowers, but May is also #SkinCancerAwareness month.
As estheticians, we have strict guidelines when it comes to treating our clients. The laws vary state by state but what is clear is that we do not diagnose, prescribe, or treat layers below the epidermis.
However, we are in a unique profession. Aside from doctors, we are among few professions who will have physical contact with our clients and possibly see a client disrobed. With that comes responsibility that may include empathy, professionalism and to observe and treat the skin within our scope of practice. When we see a skin condition that needs medical attention, we have a responsibility to let the client know.
Prep the Skin prior to waxing
For Cirépil waxing services, it’s important to prep the skin prior to waxing. The first step is to cleanse and prepare the skin with Cirepil Purifying Blue Lotion and Pre-Depilatory Oil before waxing.
This step is very important to ensure the waxing service will be effective and comfortable. At this point, while prepping the skin, we are likely assessing the skin and looking for contraindications that may have been missed in the consultation. Or we may be noting the direction of hair growth or the presence of moles to be avoided during the waxing service. In addition, we should notice any suspicious skin abnormalities, referring the client to a doctor if necessary. Keeping the conversation calm and casual, not alarming, or scary. The client will take your advice and you may save a life, especially when it comes to skin cancer. To be clear, we are not performing skin cancer checks. But as estheticians, we look closely at the skin and notice irregularities, conditions or diseases including moles that could be cancerous. We then refer to a Dr.
There are 3 types of skin cancer: basal cell, squamous cell and the most serious, melanoma. In cases of melanoma, cells known as melanocytes grow uncontrollably. While melanoma is less common than basal cell and squamous cell carcinoma, it is more dangerous due to its ability to spread to other organs. All three skin cancers may present themselves in different shapes, colors, and sizes and all need medical attention.
Educate your clients with ABCDE's skin cancer detection
Educate your clients on the importance of scheduling their yearly skin cancer check and using the ABCDE’s for skin cancer detection.
Asymetrical- moles are asymmetrical in appearance.
Borders- the borders of moles are irregular, not well defined but instead blurred or jagged.
Color-the mole contains multiple colors or different shades of the same color.
Diameter- a mole larger than a pencil eraser or ¼ inch, but some are smaller.
Evolution- the mole changes shape, size or color over time.
Aside from early detection, prevention is key. Protect the skin from UV rays by wearing sunscreen, even in the winter, on shady days and especially if you when in front of a computer. The blue light UV rays can damage the skin and cause premature aging. Seek shade, wear UV protective sunglasses and a wide brimmed hat.
Awareness saves lives. Spread the word and encourage your clients to schedule their skin check up!