Beautiful brunette addicted to sunbeds forced to fork out £2500 per year on SPF after skin cancer battle
A beautiful brunette addicted to sunbeds is forced to fork out £2500 per year on SPF after battling skin cancer.
Laura Creane, 31, from Leamington Spa, Warks, was diagnosed with the deadliest form of skin cancer, malignant melanoma, after her obsession with being bronzed almost killed her.
The former tanning salon owner who is naturally fair skinned, now plasters herself in thousands of pounds worth of high end SPF products every day – come snow, rain or shine.
Laura, would use sunbeds at least twice a week, and now lives her life in fear of the lethal cancer returning.
Laura, a sales administrator said: “No-one ever thinks they will ever get skin cancer, I was one of them people, and I was naïve.
“I’m now terrified of the sun so I spend an absolute fortune every year buying the best SPF products including sun cream, foundation, shampoo
“Applying SPF has become a part of my daily routine, I cake myself in all my products as I’m so scared that the cancer will return.
“You just can’t be too careful, women and men are still using sunbeds every day and wearing low factors on holiday and they don’t realise the damage they’re doing to their skin – I certainly didn’t.
“When I was diagnosed with skin cancer my whole world came crashing down, I was beside myself with worry, and it was all just for vanity.
“Now I realise how silly I was, there’s plenty of ways to look tanned without causing harm to your body like fake tan and spray tans.
“I think some people think I’m going over the top but you really can’t take enough care of your skin, come snow, rain or shine I always apply protection now.
“I just don’t want to risk the cancer returning, it was the most terrifying time of my life.”
At the age of 17 Laura became infatuated with using sunbeds after getting a job at a beauty salon and would only apply low factor sun creams on beach holidays.
Tragically eight years later Laura was diagnosed with malignant melanoma in April 2010 after spotting a black mole on her stomach.
Laura said: “I had gone for a facial when told me I should get a mole checked out on my face, I’d recently noticed a mole had changed colour so as a precaution I went to the doctors to have them checked out.
“I didn’t think anything of it really, but days later I got a call from the hospital and I just knew it was bad news.
“I was in complete shock but I didn’t even have time to process everything as I was sent straight for an emergency operation to remove the cancerous mole and cells from my stomach.
“I really thought I was going to die, I knew how aggressive my particular cancer could be and I was so frightened.
“I had months of difficult treatment and in the past six years I’ve had five more moles removed from my legs and tummy.
“I’ve got one 6cm scar and lots of other little scars and I will need to have more moles removed in the future too.
“People often think that having a mole removed won’t hurt, but I have to have more skin than most removed which means long, deep cuts and stitches.
“They can take weeks to heal and I’ve been left with five scars – I dread going for my check-ups in case it’s bad news again.”
During her latest check-up, Laura’s consultant became concerned when she noticed another mole had turned black on her leg.
Laura said: “I felt like I had gone back six years, but thankfully after having the mole removed I was given the all clear again.
“I feel lucky to be alive after my cancer was found early and live every day to the full now.
“My whole outlook on life has changed and I will only eat healthy organic foods now I’ve realised how important it is to be aware of what you’re doing to your body.
“I want to urge everyone to get their moles checked regularly, wear high SPF when you can and stay clear of sunbeds.
“If I can get skin cancer, anyone can, I never thought it would be me but it was.”
After beating the deadly disease Laura has become a keen fundraiser for the British Skin Foundation – now she plans to raise as much awareness as possible.
Dr Bav Shergill, a Consultant Dermatologist & British Skin Foundation Trustee said: “The best way to detect skin cancer is to check your skin regularly, you should examine the skin all over your body, from top to toe.
“Look out for moles or patches of skin that are growing, changing shape, developing new colours, inflamed, bleeding, crusting, red around the edges, particularly itchy, or behaving unusually.
“Seven people die from skin cancer every day in the UK and over 100,000 new cases are diagnosed in the UK each year.
“Some sun safety tips are to protect your skin with clothing, don’t forget to wear a hat and spend time in the shade between 11am and 3pm when it’s sunny.
“When choosing a sunscreen look for a high protection SPF (SPF 30 or more) and apply plenty of sunscreen 15 to 30 minutes before going out in the sun, and reapply every two hours and straight after swimming and towel-drying
“Remember, if in doubt, get it checked out straight away.”