What is your name?
Hi there, my name is Kamil.
Very curious of the whole world and adventurous, but sometimes tend to overanalyse even simple things.
What is your attitude towards sun protection today?
I moved to Australia over 10 years ago. I grew up in northern Europe and it took me a few years to re-calibrate my inner compass and my approach to sun protection! At first I was not paying any attention to Australian sun at all.
Once I learned about the risks, my attitude change 180 degrees and for a few weeks I lived as if I was a young vampire allergic to sun. It took me a while to learn how to protect myself from the sun and how to reduce exposure and minimise potential risks. I now run very early in the morning to avoid high UV index and I go out for longer walk in nature in the early evening.
Whenever I go out during day time, I always apply sun screen at least 10 minutes (20 if I remember) and I always have my hat handy. I also usually wear my SPF protective shirt underneath - I've been using daily it ever since my skin doctor made a recommendation to start wearing one.
Instead, I have started talking better supplements, including vitamin D3. I have an office job, so it's rather easy for me to avoid full sun during the week days.
I wish I knew all about sun protection back when I was younger. Sun screen was just not a thing when I was growing up! I was completely unaware of any risks of longer term exposure and damage that sun can cause to our skin. Australia does have much better sun awareness than any other country I have visited.
What would you tell your 16 year old self about sun protection?
I would tell my 16 year old self to take sun protection seriously - this is a long term game and you do want to win it. Always have a hat with you, get some good quality protective gear and always have a small tube of sun screen in your backpack. Three little things make a huge difference. "Slip Slop Slap" - it's never too late to learn that :)
Thank you Kamil for helping raise awareness for skin cancer, melanoma and skin conditions, and sharing your story with us and our Solbari Community.