Practice Safe Sun Awards

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Cosmopolitan Magazine launched its Practice Safe Sun campaign in 2006 to alert its network of 18 million readers of the dangers of UV exposure and raise funds for the Melanoma Research Foundation. Five years later, they've exposed the misleading tactics used by tanning salons and supported national legislation aimed at regulating the indoor-tanning industry.

The statics are sobering:

  • 1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime.
  • Melanoma is the #2 killer of women in their 20s and the #1 cancer.
  • Tanning beds increase your risk of skin cancer by a whopping 75%.
  • 70+% of tanning bed users are women in their teens and 20s.

You know this Long Island girl likes a nice glow as much as the next but after years of fake baking and oiling up at the beach, I finally wised up and now only airbrush. I'm pretty diligent about seeing my dermatologist regularly and have already had 4 precancerous moles removed (2 on my back, 2 on my stomach) that have left significant scarring. Certainly nothing compared to cancer and I can only hope that if I continue to get screened regularly, any abnormalities will be detected immediately.

Yesterday I joined Cosmopolitan and Neutrogena atop Hearst Tower to honor 5 special individuals that have joined the crusade to spread skin health awareness and award the first-ever Cosmopolitan/Melanoma Research Foundation's Practice Safe Sun Research Grant to Cynthia Cooper, PhD, of Washington State University.

The honorees are: celeb chef Giada De Laurentiis, actress Laura Linney, New York Ranger Sean Avery, dermatologist Dr. Jennifer A. Stein, and activist Cara Biggane.

Here are some of my favorite photos from the luncheon...

Honorees with the Melanoma Research Foundation's Director, Tim Turnham, Cosmopolitan Magazine's Editor-in-Chief, Kate White and Publishing Director, Donna Kalajian Lagani, and host Juju Chang:

Shyema Azam of Beauty and the Feast and me (Rebecca Taylor dress, Manolo Blahnik heels). Clearly, those legs haven't seen any rays lately:

With all the amazing products available to achieve a natural looking glow, is there really any reason not to cover up?

Laura Linney and the adorable Katy of Sugarlaws:

Grilled Watermelon Salad= a party in my tummy (sorry, too much Yo Gabba Gabba):

Giada De Laurentiis spoke affectionately about her brother Dino, who passed away from skin cancer at age 29:

Sean Avery sporting the cutest seersucker suit I've ever seen. I must get one for Sebastian, and maybe Leo too! Guys don't necessarily like girls who look like Snookie:

Dueling prints:

Donate $10 to the Melanoma Research Fund and you'll receive a Cosmo/MRF bracelet shown here:

Are you practicing safe sun?

{I was not compensated for this post. I received a gift bag containing some of the Neutrogena products showcased above. All opinions and recommendations expressed herein are my own. For more photos, visit Glamamom on Facebook.}