free dhl express shipping on orders over USD100

Your Story Series: Meet Karen

Solbari blog: Your Story Series: Meet Karen

What is your name?

My name is Karen St Ledger.

How did you discover your skin cancer / melanoma / skin condition and how long ago?

In my early 20s I developed a butterfly rash on my face that wouldn't go away. I was quickly diagnosed with discoid lupus and my specialist stressed that it was very important for me to stay protected from the sun. This was in the early 80s and I was living in Queensland, so it was a tough call.

I had to wear long sleeves and big hats whenever I went outdoors, and I avoided going outside altogether during the intense sunlight hours. Later I was also diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis (and other auto immune diseases) and I am on a medication that makes me sun sensitive, so my lifelong habit of protecting myself from the sun turned out to be a blessing.

Because of my conditions I have never been an outdoors sporty person, instead I prefer to go for long walks in the late afternoon and do indoor exercises like tai chi and pilates. But in Queensland it's very hard to avoid the sun throughout the year.

What is your attitude towards sun protection today?

I wear protective gloves for driving, a hat every day, and I always carry a sun protective umbrella. I also apply a good quality sunscreen. Solbari products are excellent - with beautiful, long lasting 50+ fabrics - they are classy and very good value for money.

It is so important to embrace sun protection, especially when it directly impacts your health. To do this you just need to allow a little bit of extra time each day to make sure you have everything you need in a bag - sunscreen, long sleeve shirt, hat and umbrella. I never leave the house without my sun umbrella, it the most essential accessory I own.

What would you tell your 16-year-old self about sun protection?

When I think of my 16 year old self, I remember how I would walk to and from school every day, refusing to wear my school hat, in the blazing summer sun. You can't undo that damage, but I feel very fortunate that I did learn about the importance of sun protection when I was in my 20s.

Thank you Karen for helping raise awareness for skin cancer, melanoma and skin conditions, and sharing your story with us and our Solbari Community.

The Solbari Team



Also in Solbari Blog

Don't miss these 7 areas when protecting your skin
Don't miss these 7 areas when protecting your skin

Below are 7 areas which people often forget to protect from the sun and can cause serious sunburn and skin damage...

1. Ears: Have you ever had blistering, peeling ears? Well, it's pretty painful and not a good look. Don't forget to apply sunscreen on your ears, the upper area and behind them. 

2. Eyelids: It's a very delicate area, where the skin is sensitive and thin. Category 3 sunglasses will help protect the eyes as well as a wide brim sun hat.

Click here to read more...

Read More
Can people of color get skin cancer?
Can people of color get skin cancer?

Skin cancer is definitely less common for people of color but sadly when it occurs the prognosis tends to be worse as issues are often detected at a more advanced stage.
Read More
Solbari Blog: What fabrics are good for sensitive skin?
What fabrics are good for sensitive skin?

This blog outlines which fabric types are best suited to those with chronic skin conditions including psoriasis, lupus and eczema. Natural fabrics including cotton and bamboo are considered the best for irritable, sensitive skin. These fabrics are the best because they are soft and they help regulate body temperature.
Read More