Safe in the Sun: June Corrigan


June Corrigan, 50, lives in sun-soaked Palm Desert, Calif., but grew up in sun-starved Montreal. When summer came, she worked as a lifeguard and loved getting a tan. “There was such a limited amount of time to get brown,” she says. “I distinctly remember a sun-kissed complexion was a definite improvement over the pallor from a long, cold winter.” When Corrigan was 25, she moved out west and fell in love with the numerous sunny days. Sunscreen? She rarely bothered.

Then she turned 40 and spotted a scaly red bump on her right arm. “It looked like the spot you get when you get a vaccination,” she says. The spot was basal cell carcinoma. Soon, a spot cropped up on her shoulder—another basal cell cancer. Then there was one on her back and one on her chest. Each one left her with a little scar after it was removed.

Today, long after her lifeguard years, Corrigan wears SPF 30, and at pool parties she dons a hat and sits in the shade. “Im afraid of the sun now,” she says. “It would be nice to be carefree like I used to be, but I dont want to be all carved up.” Whenever a friend heads outside without sunblock, Corrigan doesnt have to say much—she just points out the scars on her arm.