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Get Smart About the Sun

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Step 2: Protect These Key Spots

Every inch of you is vulnerable to skin cancer, but certain areas are at higher risk. When applying SPF, use a palm-size dose from head to toe and pay special attention to these body parts.

Left side of the face

UVA rays can penetrate glass, so driving a car puts this half in greater danger. If you're more likely to be a passenger, the reverse is true.
Tip: Apply a high-level SPF (30 or more) all over your face before a long drive -- and be sure to touch up during pit stops.


It's the leading area for facial skin cancers.
Tip: Spending more than a few minutes outdoors? Apply a double dose of sunscreen to your schnozz.


Melanomas found here are deadlier than anywhere else on the body. Docs think it's because they're detected later, since hair can hide them.
Tip: Wear a hat and use a light aerosol sunscreen on your part and hairline.


These are a hot spot for actinic keratoses, precancers that often turn into squamous cell carcinoma.
Tip: A sunscreen stick makes it easy to shield these often-overlooked areas. A wide-brimmed hat adds protection.


Melanomas are more common here in women than men, probably because women want tanned legs and are likely to skimp on -- or skip -- sunscreen.
Tip: Rely on self-tanner, not the sun, for color, and top it with sunscreen.

Lower Lip

Unlike the upper, it's not shaded from UV rays by the nose.
Tip: Use an SPF-rich balm or lipstick on your entire mouth. Avoid glosses; their shine may attract UV rays.


Summer sandals and flip-flops leave them more exposed.
Tip: When applying sunscreen, be sure to cover your feet thoroughly, including on and around your toes.


Sources: Craig Austin, MD, assistant clinical professor at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City; Dennis Gross, MD, New York City-based dermatologist and author of Your Future Face

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