Hugh Jackman has a very important message for his fans: Wear sunscreen.
The X-Men star took to Instagram yesterday to speak out about having his sixth skin cancer removed.
Using the opportunity to share his story with his 10 million followers, he wrote: “Another basal cell carcinoma. Thanks to frequent body checks and amazing doctors, all is well. Looks worse with the dressing on than off. I swear! #wearsunscreen”
Basal cell carcinoma, also known as a BCC, is a type of skin cancer largely believed to be caused by too much exposure to ultraviolet light from the sun or sun beds. It’s the single most common form of skin cancer, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation, with approximately three million cases diagnosed in the U.S. each year. While it almost never spreads beyond the lesion site, it can be disfiguring if allowed to grow.
Jackman first had a BCC removed in 2013 after having a mole checked under the advice of his wife Deborra-Lee Furness.
He wrote at the time: “Deb said to get the mark on my nose checked. Boy, was she right! I had a basil cell carcinoma. Please don’t be foolish like me. Get yourself checked. And USE sunscreen!!!”
Since then, the actor has been treated for five more cases – including one on his shoulder.
After every treatment, he takes to social media to post about the dangers of not wearing sunscreen.
In 2014, he thanked his doctors for removing a basal cell carcinoma on his nose:
And in 2016, warned his followers to get regular check-ups after having another removed:
Speaking to People in 2015, Jackman said growing up in Australia made him a ‘prime candidate’ for skin cancer, admitting he never wore sunscreen.
He said: “I go every three months for check-ups. It’s the new normal for me. My doctor says I’ll likely have more, and if that’s your cross to bear in life, you should be so lucky.”
Moral of the story? Wear. Sunscreen.