In the early 60s of the last century, Brigitte Bardot was already sunbathing topless, and the appearance of a monokini - a swimsuit consisting of panties with a thin braid - in 1964 heralded the triumph of freedom. Today, women are becoming more and more liberated with regard to their bodies and, despite condemnation and greasy looks, they can afford to expose any part of it, including topless sunbathing.
The development of breast tumors has not yet been associated with any of the environmental carcinogens
True, in recent years, the trend has seriously declined in Europe and in particular in France, where it all began. In the latest IFOP poll, only 2% of French women aged 18-24 are willing to show up on the beach without a bikini top - not only for moral reasons, but also because of concerns about the risk of breast cancer. This suspicion is justified, but the link between topless sunbathing and the development of breast cancer is not yet fully understood.
Despite the rapid progress of science, there are still many blank spots in biology and medicine. The etiology of breast cancer is currently insufficiently studied: unlike lung cancer or bladder cancer, the development of breast tumors cannot be convincingly associated with any of the environmental carcinogens. Moreover, breast cancer is the most common form of cancer among women, affecting, on average, every tenth woman between the ages of 13 and 90 during her life (in men, cases of the disease are less than 1%).
Risk factors are different - from hereditary mutations in genes and diabetes mellitus to smoking and the use of exogenous hormones. To date, scientists do not claim that exposure to sunlight is the direct cause of the development of a malignant tumor of the glandular tissue of the mammary gland. What's more, there are studies showing a link between vitamin D deficiency and the development of breast cancer. A group of biochemists at the University of New Jersey believe that getting enough vitamin D in the body reduces the risk of mammosphere formation and lowers the expression of cancer stem cell markers.
Be that as it may, in the careless pursuit of a tan, there is little useful. The sun's rays have been scientifically proven to affect the occurrence of skin cancer (we recently found out how). In addition to the natural protective reaction of the skin in the form of hyperpigmentation and keratinization, radiation can cause premature aging of the skin and uncontrolled growth of atypical cells, which entails the risk of benign and malignant tumors. Basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas in most cases occur mainly on the head, neck and hands, that is, on the areas of the skin most often exposed to sunlight. The skin on the chest is much thinner and more sensitive, especially in the area of the nipple and areola. Ironically, the skin of the mammary glands is especially helpless in front of the sun's rays, including because, as a rule, it is hidden from them throughout the year, which means that melanin was delivered to the epithelial cells of this skin area in much smaller quantities, designed to protect us from exposure sun.
5 minutes topless tanning
in the open sun should be replaced at least
15 minutes in the shade
Therefore, solar radiation affects the skin of the chest in the same way as the rest of the areas. In addition, a number of studies, including the work of an international team of scientists led by Jiali Khan, a professor at Harvard Medical School, indicate that patients with a history of non-melanoma skin cancer have a higher risk of developing breast cancer.Despite the fact that a direct connection between the occurrence of a malignant tumor in the tissues of the mammary gland and exposure to sunlight has not yet been found, apparently, from a long rest under the scorching sun without proper protection, there is no less harm than good.
Sunbathing with or without a swimsuit is relatively safe only in the morning and evening hours, when the sun is not at its peak. Dermatologists warn that 5 minutes of topless tanning in the open sun should be followed by at least 15 minutes in the shade. If you think that you cannot do without a tanning bed, the first two sessions should be limited to 2 minutes.
On the day you decide to sunbathe topless, protect your breast skin better than simple sunscreen. According to New York dermatologist Julia Russek, antioxidant serums containing ferulic acid, phloretin, vitamins C and E will help prepare the skin for increased sun exposure. These products should be applied in the morning or before applying sun protection. It, in turn, is applied 15–20 minutes before sun exposure, so that the cream has time to be absorbed.
Why sunscreens are needed and how to choose the optimal one, we have already told you. For breast skin, it is not a spray or a light fluid that is best suited, but a dense cream with a reliable coating and physical filters in the composition, and the higher the SPF factor, the better. Apply the cream evenly, paying special attention to the nipples, and renew the protection every hour. After you finally get your full tan, don't forget to gently exfoliate and moisturize your breasts - these simple steps can help reduce the drying out of your skin in response to sun exposure.
Photos: haveseen - stock.adobe.com, Maridav - stock.adobe.com