The company has launched free private brand sun cream products in store with packaging much more reminiscent of wood filler or paint than traditional balms, in an awareness drive underlining its research finding that there has been a 119% rise in melanoma skin cancer incidence rates since the early 90s. Melanoma is an illness highly contractable in the construction industry due to long periods spent by tradespeople in the outdoors.
Head of brand and communications at Wickes Matthew Gaunt said: “It is clear that there’s a real need here and we want to help tradespeople working outdoors get to grips with this issue. We hope that by trialing Wickes Tradesman’s Suncream in our stores, it helps raise awareness of an important issue within the industry, as well as making protection from the sun’s rays more accessible to tradespeople in the UK.”
Dr. Lesley Rushton, who works at the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Imperial College London, added: “We have estimated that around one construction worker every fortnight will get a melanoma caused by sun exposure at work.
“Occupational solar exposure is often overlooked but it is so important that tradespeople are well informed about the potential implications of being sunburnt, and that they take the necessary steps to minimize their risk.”
The products are now available in stores in a variety of styles: Brickie’s Bronze, Plasterers Pink or Apprentice White.