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La Roche-Posay Sets ‘Skinchecker’ Campaign

The global ads aim to raise awareness of skin-cancer screening.

PARIS — In a bid to encourage skin-cancer screening, La Roche-Posay has unveiled its international “Skinchecker” campaign.

The 30- and 60-second video — to have primarily digital play, at laroche-posay.com/skinchecker, starting Thursday in 38 countries — features Dalmatians gently inspecting each other’s spots.

“Today melanoma remains one of the only preventable cancers which continues to be on the rise,” Elisabeth Araujo, international director of La Roche-Posay, told a press conference in Paris on Tuesday morning.

To learn about sun-safety habits, the L’Oréal-owned cosmetics brand signed on market research company IPSOS to survey 19,569 women and men in 23 countries spanning all continents.

The findings varied from country to country, but also by age and gender. They showed that in the U.S., for instance — where almost 5 million people are treated for skin cancer yearly and the number of those with the disease has grown more than for all other cancers combined — 80 percent of participants said they protect themselves from the sun. But just 26 percent protect themselves year-round.

Further, although in the U.S. 64 percent concur a rapidly changing mole could be a sign of skin cancer, only 18 percent have their moles looked at by a dermatologist at least one time per year. Someone dies of skin cancer every hour in the U.S.

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The IPSOS study showed that 52 percent of people globally never had their moles checked by a dermatologist.

According to La Roche-Posay, 90 percent of skin cancers are curable if detected in time. “Knowing if you are at risk is critical in skin-cancer prevention and education; early detection and protection make a difference. The time for change is now, which is why La Roche-Posay is launching this worldwide campaign to spread awareness about the importance of self-checking and urging people to look out for those they care about,” the company said in a statement, adding, “With only 33 percent of those surveyed having urged others to check their moles, we still have a long way to go.”

In the U.S. La Roche-Posay has for more than six years run the informational “SOS — Save Our Skin” campaign, which aims for behavioral change.

La Roche-Posay’s video dovetails from the IPSOS study’s finding that 73 percent of people are more likely to look after others close to them than they are themselves. The choice of dogs (and adorable puppies) to star wasn’t just a whim.

“It’s always a little delicate to show people undressed, looking at their skin,” stated BETC’s art director Jean-Michel Alirol, who worked on the campaign. “We preferred to show animals, and in this particular case we chose beloved Dalmatians.”

“We invested three times more than on an ordinary digital campaign,” said Laetitia Toupet, managing director of La Roche-Posay France and Sanoflore France, without specifying an amount.

In France, “Skinchecker” is to be introduced Thursday during prime time on TF1, France 2, France 3 and M6, plus in newspapers such as Le Monde and Le Figaro.

The campaign, which has already kicked off in Australia, Mexico, Chili, Peru and Argentina, also includes practical information, such as a simple, five-step method to identify possible skin cancer, the ability to share information and a live Twitter feed, among other elements.