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Pharmacy Plays an Important Role in Educating Aussies about Sunscreen

Australia has one of the highest rates of skin cancers in the world – yet at least 95% of these cancers are preventable.1

With summer just around the corner – and spring already recording warmer than average temperatures – it’s time for pharmacists and pharmacy assistants to refresh their sun safety knowledge, so they in turn, can provide appropriate advice to customers and local community.

A recent study of Australian attitudes towards sun care protection revealed that 85% of people do not use enough sunscreen, and are not getting the protection they need.2

Furthermore, only 32% of people surveyed reapply sunscreen every 2 hours, and 20% never reapply sunscreen.2

Education will help improve sun safety behaviour so it’s important that people are reminded what steps they should take to help stay safe in the sun.

Pharmacists and pharmacy assistants are perfectly positioned to provide sun care advice and help customers prepare for summer.

In Australia, sunscreen is watched over by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), which governs all medical products and demands some of the highest testing standards for sunscreen in the world.

Broad spectrum SPF 50+ sunscreens offer the most advanced sun protection, and must meet the stringent standards if sold in Australia.

However, the full benefits of sunscreen is only realised with appropriate and regular application.

Here are five tips that Banana Boat recommends pharmacists and pharmacy assistants proactively share with customers:

  1.  Apply sunscreen liberally and always use at least 7 teaspoons per application.
  2. Always apply sunscreen at least twenty minutes before sun exposure and allow it to dry on the skin.
  3. Always reapply sunscreen every two hours, and more often if swimming, sweating or after using a towel.
  4. Always wear protective clothing, wide brimmed hats and sunglasses.
  5. Seek shade between 10am-3pm and try and avoid prolonged sun exposure.

Everyone has different preferences when it comes to sun protection – some people prefer lotion while others prefer a clear spray or roll-on format.

The Banana Boat® range of sunscreens has everyone covered – whether you are spending time at the beach, playing outdoor sports or require an everyday sunscreen for the kids.

New to the range is Banana Boat® Dry BalanceTM Sunscreen, formulated to absorb excess moisture, and with a dry matte finish.

It provides safe and effective broad spectrum UVA and UVB protection and is 4 hours’ water-resistant. Banana Boat® Dry BalanceTM Sunscreen is available in SPF50+, lotion or clear spray application.

Sunscreen is only one part of an important combination of actions pharmacy staff should recommend customers take to protect themselves and their family from the sun.

They should always recommend that customers avoid prolonged exposure to the sun and always wear protective clothing, hats and eyewear.

For more information about Banana Boat, visit

To download Banana Boat’s sun safe fact sheet, please click here.

1. Cancer Council Australia. Skin Cancer Accessed 14/09/17
2. Garbutcheon-Singh K, Dixit S, Lee A, Brown P, Smith S. Assessment of attitudes towards sun -protective behaviour in Australians: A cross-sectional study. Australas J Dermatol. 2016;57(2):102-7

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