Carol Vorderman avoids sunbathing due to pre-cancerous skin changes

Carol Vorderman. (Getty Images)
Carol Vorderman chooses to avoid sunbathing to help prevent skin cancer. (Getty Images)

Carol Vorderman has revealed that she doesn't sunbathe anymore due to previously being affected by pre-cancerous skin changes.

The TV presenter, 62, has had skin biopsies in the past, which involve removing and examining small samples of tissue.

"Well I can't sunbathe anymore, or rather I choose not to, because I've had, you know, a little pre-cancerous skin thingy, biopsy thingies, all of that," she says in a video shared with her more than 300,000 followers on Instagram.

Pre-cancerous refers to cells that might develop into cancer.

"So I do fake tans. Do you like this one? Put that on last night. Little bit of fake tan, hopefully it lasts," she adds.

While Vorderman has only just uploaded the clip, it was taken from her 'Vorders Diaries' archives, filmed in September 2022 when she was in isolation before entering I'm A Celeb South Africa (due to start 24 April).

Despite speaking about her brush with pre-cancerous cells lightheartedly while smiling to the camera, Vorderman does in fact have a family history of the disease itself.

Her mum Jean died in 2017 at 88 after being diagnosed with terminal cancer, having already fought three different types of cancer before (including skin).

In March 2022 Vorderman posted a picture of the pair, smiling at lunch together, with a heartfelt tribute.

"Mothers Day 2017. Mum had been diagnosed with terminal cancer a week before. So I got a beautiful room in @ivycliftonbrass for all of us to celebrate her," the caption reads.

"We were unbelievably close for all of my life. Mum had lived with me & worked for me full time since the 1980s.

"Whenever I moved she moved with us, when I was married, divorced, whatever. When I had the children Nana was part of our team all day, every day. We were a pack of 4. Me Mum Katie and Cam.

"24/7 it was always us.

"She died 2 months after this photo was taken."

Vorderman was inundated with supportive messages at the time, clearly now doing what she can to lower her risk of having the disease herself.

Carol Vorderman attends the Pride of Britain Awards 2022 at Grosvenor House on October 24, 2022 in London, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Dave J. Hogan/Getty Images)
Carol Vorderman's late mother Jean was diagnosed with skin cancer. (Getty Images)

Skin cancer causes

You're more likely to get skin cancer (melanoma) if you have a history of the disease in your family or you've had it before, according to the NHS.

You're also at a higher risk if you have pale skin that burns easily, have red or blonde hair, blue or green eyes, a large number of freckles or moles, have had a lot of sun exposure and been sunburnt a lot, and use sun beds regularly.

The most common cause is ultraviolet (UV) light, which comes from the sun, and also used in sun beds.

How to reduce the risk of skin cancer

The best ways to lower your chances of skin cancer include staying out of the sun during the hottest part of the day, keeping your arms and legs covered and wearing a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses, using sunscreen with at least 30 SPF and at least 4-star UVA protection.

Babies and children should be protected from the sun, as their skin is much more sensitive than an adult's.

To find our more about the condition, see our useful guide on skin cancer signs and symptoms: from melanoma to carcinoma.

For advice or support, you can also call Melanoma UK on 0808 171 2455 or Macmillan on 0808 808 00 00.

Watch: Hugh Jackman gives all-clear after undergoing two biopsies for skin cancer