Should Hair Care Cross Over To Skin Care?

For many women, their hairdresser's chair is a secret-free zone where topics like age and natural hair color are not taboo. With all matters on the table, should hairdressers be trained to deal with more than just hair?

Hairdressers may be able to help to detect potentially cancerous abnormalities in an early stage, when they are easiest to treat, says a new study. About 6 percent of melanomas are located on the scalp and neck. So it should come to no surprise that after dealing with different heads all day long, hairdressers may be the first to spot deadly skin cancer.

The study surveyed over 200 hairstylists near Houston, Texas. In addition to other questions, they were asked how often they look for abnormalities on their client's head, face and neck. Nearly 60 percent of the hairstylists reported that they had suggested at least one of their clients see a doctor about an abnormal mole.

According to the study, the greater the stylist's own knowledge of skin protection practices, the more likely they were to examine a client's skin. Less than one-third of all of the hairstylists had any formal training about skin cancer.

What do you think? Since melanoma of the head and neck is especially dangerous, should hairdressers be educated on skin cancer prevention or should we leave that up to doctors alone?