NEW YORK — At the 26th annual Skin Sense Award Gala Tuesday, the president of the Skin Cancer Foundation, Perry Robins, M.D., had good news to share: “We are beginning to make a dent [in the fight against skin cancer].”
Addressing the crowd of 450 beauty industry executives and dermatologists, who gathered at The Pierre to honor Shiseido Cosmetics’ Heidi Manheimer and 3M Pharmaceuticals’ Richard Miller, Robins noted that nearly 60 percent of adults take measures to protect themselves from the sun.
Despite the strides, melanoma — the most serious form of skin cancer — is projected to strike one in 50 Americans by 2010.
Manheimer, Shiseido’s president for U.S. Operations, proved just how prevalent skin cancer is by divulging that she noticed an unusual-looking spot on her leg soon after learning she was this year’s Skin Sense co-honoree. Testing revealed it was melanoma. “Fortunately, it was diagnosed and treated at an early stage,” said Manheimer. She appealed to the manufacturers, retailers and editors in attendance to promote self-examinations and body checks. “While these gestures may seem simple they are not, they can be life-saving. I know firsthand,” she said.
The crowd included industry heavyweights such as Bath & Body Works’ chief executive officer Neil Fiske, the celebrity dermatologist Pat Wexler and Howard Kreitzman, vice president, cosmetics and fragrances at Bloomingdale’s.
The annual event raised $625,000 in support of skin cancer awareness programs.