Pink October: when prevention comes into fashion
The color pink, for the psychology of colors, has the touch of action of red but softened with the purity of white, which results in senses such as unconditional love and welcoming. In fact, pink is feminine and romantic, bringing the vibration of love and kindness. For this pink October, however, this color gains deeper meanings. Color inspires us to self-care and becomes an international symbol of breast cancer prevention campaigns.
The pink bow is the international symbol of Pink October, a month of awareness about the importance of preventing breast cancer.
The October Pink Campaign takes place worldwide and invites us to talk about the importance of prevention and early diagnosis of breast cancer. To raise awareness, it is important to overcome taboos, expand information, provide greater access to diagnostic and treatment services, seeking to reduce mortality.
The matter is serious. Breast cancer represents the most incidents of women on the planet. In Brazil alone, it is estimated that in 2020 66,280 new cases of breast cancer will be diagnosed, according to the National Cancer Institute (INCA).
The good news is that when diagnosed early on, 95% of cases have a chance of cure. Hence the importance of early detection of the disease, that is, diagnosing it as early as possible.
The tips for early detection, according to the Oncoguia Institute, are as follows:
- Perform a clinical breast exam annually from 40 years of age.
This examination is performed by the doctor, so it is very important to have preventive consultations with a gynecologist annually.
- · Screening through mammograms annually from the age of 40.
- · Breast Awareness.
Breast awareness is a concept that expands the idea of self-examination. It means being aware of the health of the breasts, that is, knowing your own body and perceiving changes in the breasts that are usual and which are not.
The guidance given by UK NHS (The United Kingdom National Health System) is that women should observe and feel their breasts whenever they feel comfortable doing so, but without the need to learn a self-examination technique or to follow an arbitrary regularity. When any suspicious changes are found, the woman should see a doctor without delay.
The novelty of the Pink October 2020 campaign is that many organizations have realized that it is necessary to speak not only to women.
FEMAMA (Brazilian Federation of Philanthropic Institutions to Support Breast Health), for instance, called its action “3 questions that save”, calling on family, friends, and the whole society to have a conversation on this subject.
The mastologist doctor Maira Caleffi, voluntary president of the institution, explains that this year’s campaign came about when they realized that “women take care of family, friends and forget to look at themselves”.
The idea, then, is to involve the people around this woman and, through three informal questions, try to get her to act:
- Have you been watching your breasts?
- Have you already scheduled your annual exams?
- Do you know your risk factors?
These are simple questions, but they show concern and can save a life!
And the men with that?
Although the incidence of breast cancer in men is rare, representing only 1% of all cases, the conversation on the subject also involves the male sex. After all, they also have mothers, friends, girlfriends, wives, partners, daughters who can benefit from their support.
With this in mind, the Colombian League Against Cancer suggested the theme Together We Are Stronger, where men are also involved in the fight against breast cancer.
A poster of the awareness campaign of the Colombian League Against Cancer highlighting the importance of men’s participation.
The American Cancer Society, for its part, created the Real Men Wear Pink campaign, understanding that breast cancer affects everyone. The National Ambassador for the Campaign is the world champion and boxing legend Oscar de la Hoya. Since his mother died of breast cancer, Oscar has pledged to fight the disease, considering it the most important fight of his life.
Box legend, Oscar de la Hoya is the National Ambassador of the Real Men Wear Pink Campaign of the American Cancer Society.
October Pink and Fashion
No doubt that the fashion world also actively participates in this awareness movement.
Brazilian brands Tufi Duek and Scarf Me, for example, joined the Feeling Pink campaign. The collaboration between the brands resulted in the limited and exclusive creation of 100 scarves.
For each scarf sold, a mammogram is donated to the NGO UNACCAM (Union and Support to Combat Breast Cancer). Brazilian top model Isabeli Fontana is the face of this campaign, brightening up the action. The model, moreover, gave up her áyment as a solidarity form with the awareness movement.
Top model Isabeli Fontana photographed by Gui Paganini for the Felling Pink campaign to support the fight against breast cancer of the brands Tufi Fuek and Scarf Me.
The Brazilian shoe brand Grendha joined the visual artist Vilma Kano to launch the Mais Rosa collection. The choice of the artist for this action is important. Vilma started her career as an artist to pay for her own breast cancer treatment.
Today her works portray moments of that struggle. Vilma also founded an NGO with her name, which carries out work to disseminate information and promote the well-being and self-esteem of women breast cancer patients.
The partnership between Vilma and the shoe brand resulted in the creation of two casual sandals inspired by the artist’s life story. They also started a campaign with the aim of showing the importance of mammograms for early diagnosis.
Casual sandal created by the artist Vilma Kano for the Mais Rosa collection of the Grendha brand as an action for the Pink October 2020.
The Italian lingerie and loungewear brand Intimissimi and the Brazilian clean beauty brand Biossance also joined forces to support the fight against breast cancer. The partnership will revert 10% of sales of specific kits for the October Pink campaign through the NGO Américas Amigas. The collection will be converted into procedures such as mammograms and other exams that help early diagnosis and treatment.
Photo: Playback / Instagram @intimissimibrasiloficial
Pink line of the Italian brand Intimissimi with 10% of the income reverted to finance health exams in the fight against breast cancer.
Models of Courage
October Rosa’s awareness campaigns are not only lived by prestigious brands.
The voices of celebrities and successful models are also fundamental for overcoming the prejudice and fear that many women have of going to the doctor and undergoing exams that can save lives.
The international model and actress Fernanda Motta is one of those courageous voices. In February of this year, she went public to reveal her fight against the disease that reached one of her breasts. On her Instagram she opened the game about discovery and treatment: “I decided to open my heart to you”, says the model.
She says she discovered a lump on self-examination and attributes the success of her treatment to early discovery. Her message of optimism is for everyone: “Each individual is unique and faces differently, but perseverance, overcoming, support, and love overcome all fear and make you a stronger person”. Her message ends with the statement: “I chose to smile!”
(Photo: Playback / Instagram)
The photo was chosen by Fernanda Motta to announce to her followers that she is being treated for breast cancer. “I choose to smile!”
Presenter Ana Furtado is a breast cancer winner. That is why she was chosen to be the sponsor of the 2020 Pink October campaign in Rio de Janeiro. Her presence as a cancer survivor reminds us of celebrating life and renewing faith.
Spearheaded by the Fita Rosa Foundation, the opening of the October Rose campaign also featured Christ the Redeemer, a symbol of the city of Rio de Janeiro, illuminated in pink. Among this year’s objectives, the campaign wants to raise awareness and reduce inequalities in access to cancer treatment.
Press Release / FundaçãoLaçoRosa
Ana Furtado is the godmother of the October Pink 2020 Campaign.
In addition to these famous women, there are countless other models of courage. They are women patients, survivors, fighters, and co-survivors in the fight against breast cancer.
Thinking of these warriors, mostly anonymous, Ford Motor Company created Warriors in Pink, an active support system for anyone affected by the disease. To represent courage, commitment, hope in the fight, Models of Courage, the name given by Warriors in Pink to these women warriors, who inspire better days with their life examples.
“Inspire Others”. Carletta Cunningham, one of Ford Warriors in Pink’s Models of Courage.
And what can you do?
The first thing you can do is to ask yourself: are you taking care of your health? If the answer is yes: Congratulations! Otherwise, it is time to think about yourself and prioritize your health. Remember: taking care of yourself is always the best option!
After taking care of yourself it is time to reflect on the people around you. Have you been asking the people you love if they also take care of themselves? Encouraging those you love to self-care is a real act of love!
If you have had breast cancer and are already a winner. Congratulations! Surely your story is an inspiration for many other people!
If you are still undergoing treatment. Don’t be discouraged. Remember to smile and appreciate every minute of your precious life!
In all of these cases, you are also a model of courage.
Be an inspiration, be audacious. Remember that fashion is about being alive! The fashion is to be you!