How common is skin cancer?

Simple answer - too common!!!

Its no joke, so don't mess around. Read the World Health Organisations predictions below. My major take out is this line...

The global incidence of melanoma continues to increase – however, the main factors that predispose to the development of melanoma seem to be connected with recreational exposure to the sun and a history of sunburn

Yep that's right kids. The only person who can dramatically reduce your chances of melanoma is you.

The incidence of both non-melanoma and melanoma skin cancers has been increasing over the past decades. Currently, between 2 and 3 million non-melanoma skin cancers and 132,000 melanoma skin cancers occur globally each year. One in every three cancers diagnosed is a skin cancer and, according to Skin Cancer Foundation Statistics, one in every five people will develop skin cancer in their lifetime.

As ozone levels are depleted, the atmosphere loses more and more of its protective filter function and more solar UV radiation reaches the Earth's surface. It is estimated that a 10 per cent decrease in ozone levels will result in an additional 300,000 non-melanoma and 4,500 melanoma skin cancer cases. The global incidence of melanoma continues to increase – however, the main factors that predispose to the development of melanoma seem to be connected with recreational exposure to the sun and a history of sunburn. These factors lie within each individual's own responsibility.

Info courtesy of World Health Organisation -


What you SHOULDN'T do for beautiful skin

We all read so many articles about what to do to keep our skin beautiful, sometimes it makes your head hurt. None of it is rocket science and (let's be honest) we all know it all anyway, you just tend to act on it when someone points it all out. 

So instead of what you SHOULD do for beautiful, here is a different approach - what you SHOULDN'T do to keep you skin at its best. 

1. You don't wear sunscreen underneath your T-shirt.
We tend to only apply sunscreen on exposed areas like our arms and legs before heading out of the house, however you can still get sun exposure through your clothing. Unless you're wearing clothes - aka IDLEBIRD.COM - that has UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor), make sure to slather sunscreen underneath thin fabrics like your everyday T-shirt if you wear them.

2. You depend on sunscreens with SPF 100 to protect yourself for the whole day.
The truth is, higher SPFs doesn't mean better sun protection. Opting for a sunscreen with an SPF ranging from 30-50 is good enough, but that includes reapplication. This will keep you protected against UVB rays, which normally causes sunburns, pigmentations and premature skin aging. However we need protection from both UVB and UVA, both which amounts to equally damaging radation for our skin. The key is to look out for UVA-blocking ingredients in your sunscreen. These products are usually labelled as "broad-spectrum" or "UVA/UVB protection".

3. You leave your sunscreen in a hot car.
Extreme heat can weaken its effectiveness as most preseveratives used in sunscreens are typically designed and tested in room temperatures.

4. You don't reapply your sunscreen just because it's labelled "waterproof".
There's no definite thing called a "waterproof" sunscreen, as you will still need to reapply it once you're in the water. These water-resistant products can only delay the amount of time needed for the next reapplication.

5. You indulge in one, too many cocktails while lounging at the beach.
Think twice about doubling up on those refreshing piña coladas by the beach as taking in an excessive amount of sugar and alcohol can cause inflammation in our skin and will lead to the release of more free radicals. The harsh sunlight plays a significant part in suppressing your immune system.

6. You skip wearing sunscreen on a cloudy day.
We are usually falsely led to thinking that harsh sunlight leads to harsh UV rays. Unfortunately, UV radiation is still present even on rainy days. We might not see or feel it, but the effects of it on a gloomy day can be damaging if we don't choose to protect ourselves with sunscreen.


Exerts of this article were originally published on


I ask there any better feeling than one you get post a good de-clutter? Like doing a juice cleanse after New Year's, the spring clean has become an obligatory way to prepare the mind and soul to tackle the last few months of the year. 

Science aside - although I'm sure there are results available - the sense of well-being and lightweighted-ness (not a word) is akin to a good dose of vitamins or a beach-mini break. 

So my tips for a fully rewarding spring clean are:

Plan ahead - have nothing else scheduled, no-one else around the second guess your judgement and leave yourself twice the amount of time that you thought you'd need. 

Prep your space - cue your favourite tunes, sunlight if you can get it and a easy exit to carry out the bags full of unwanted goods.

Memorise the mantra - There is only one question you need ask yourself "does this thing make me happy".

Commit to a Game Plan - What is going where? Who gets what? Distribute your goodies asap, the longer they lie around the more likely they'll sneak back where you found them

Remember, a spring clean takes its name from the season of renewal - out with the old and in with the new. So, embrace the space you've created and think wisely on how to fill it next.......some new IdleBird perhaps??




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I love a good frollick in the the sun as much as the next girl. While summer is the season of choice for the family beach holiday, wintertime for me is the perfect romantic get-away season. Think cosy fireplaces, ski chalets and mountain walks. 

The thing about winter is, it fools us into complacency when it comes to sun protection. We've all been guilty of saying 'but I can't feel the burn'. Well it's no surprise, because you can't feel UV rays. The comforting warmth on our skin that we feel is actually a product of the sun's infrared radiation. While the UV radiation levels are generally lower during the winter, you can still get sunburnt. If you're in the mountains, there is less atmosphere to block out the UV rays. Not to mention the reflective properties of snow. 

Some sun exposure within safe levels can be beneficial because our skin uses it to produce vitamin D, which is important for bone health. It may also help to reduce your risk of certain other diseases, including a number of cancers, although more research needs to be done to be certain. 

I guess the moral of the story is, that if you are lucky enough to be enjoying a time this winter in the mountains hiking, skiing or cuddling, don't forget to continue to protect your skin. That means sun protection clothing where you can, sunscreen, hat and glasses. 

For further information contact Cancer Council Australia



UPF is similar to SPF (sun protection factor) used to rate sunscreens but UPF is the rating used to measure the amount of UV rays that pass through fabrics when exposed to UV Radiation or UVR.

To be called sun protective fabric it must achieve a minimum UV Protection Factor (UPF) rating of at least UPF15 after the equivalent of 2 years of normal wear and tear. 

Where you are protected by an IdleBird garment - you are UPF50+ protected



Why not wear my cotton kaftan??

Most people think they can cover up with any old thing in the sun and be protected, but that simply isn't true.  The average white T-Shirt or dress has a UPF rating of between 5 and 15 - allowing as much 1/5th of the sun’s UVR to pass through—even more when wet.

The amount of protection fabric provides depends on the type of fabric and the weave or knit of the fabric.

And that my friends, is the IdleBird difference. Where you are covered with one of our garments you are protected - UPF50+ protected.