qld health

Rashies Are Back — But Don’t Worry, They’re Chic Now

Folks who grew up in Australia probably share a few similar childhood memories. Some include viewings of Huey's Cooking Adventures during meandering afternoons in the school holidays, gobbling down multiple slices of fairy bread at birthday parties and waking up to the sound of the Sunrise theme music.
It's also fair to assume that cringing at a parent or older family member when they insisted you wore a rash shirt while swimming is up there too. As a pre-teen on holiday, there was simply nothing worse than begrudgingly popping on a bright purple rashie before heading into the waves— especially when it seemed like everyone else your age was free to frolic in a tiny bikini.
Much like low-rise jeans and smokey eye looks, the loved (and loathed) rashie has made a comeback recently — and honestly, we're here for it.
Like most trends these days, the first inklings we heard of their revival were on TikTok. Creator @theangelwearsgucci posted this video late last year explaining her thoughts on the comeback.
@theangelwearsgucci My 2023 summer fashion prediction is the rise of swim shirts/rash shirts. That’s right, sun safety has never looked more fashionable!! 🌞 Brands of where to buy are tagged. Let me know your thoughts and will you be wearing a swim shirt? 💛#theangelwearsgucci #whathotgirlswear #fashionfocus #summerfashion #summerstyles #trendingfashion2023 #2023fashionprediction #summeroutfitinspo #swimshirts #resortwear #rashshirt #astaresort #cottononbody #skims #skimsswim #2023summer #fashioninspoforyou #fashioninfluencers #fashionoutfits ♬ B.O.T.A. (Baddest Of Them All) - Eliza Rose & Interplanetary Criminal
The creator goes on to note that global brands are selling swim shirts, well-known Australian swim labels are releasing elevated rashies, and a heightened awareness of sun safety can be attributed to the comeback of the rashie.
"This particular item has been particularly dominated by surfwear brands [in the past]. Yes, the aim of this product has been sun-safety, but why is it that I have to look like a pubescent toddler at the beach?" she said complaining about a previous lack of fashionable swim shirts on the market.
Additionally, a range of other Aussie brands have all put out lines of swim shirts and rashies over the last few months. These brands aren't peddling the mismatched colours and gaudy patterns of your youth — they're creating stylish and chic pieces that you'd actually want to wear.
Not only is the trend cute, it comes at a dire time — given Australia has some of the highest rates of skin cancer in the world, this is a promising step in the right direction for sun safety.
According to the Cancer Council at least two in three Australians will be diagnosed with skin cancer in their lifetime, with the disease accounting for more deaths than traffic accidents yearly. Additionally, skin cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among Australians aged 15-29 years, and having more than five sunburns before the age of 30 doubled the risk of melanoma.
On top of these alarming stats, over the last few months, the internet's obsession with 'tan lines' and 'sun-kissed skin' popped off, making it abundantly clear that the message around sun safety hasn't exactly permeated everyone yet.
"If you're spending more than about 10 minutes outdoors when the UV index is three or more (from about 8am to 4pm in summer, 9am to 3pm in winter) people should use the full suite of sun protection activities. Cover the skin with clothing, wear a hat and sunglasses, stay in the shade, and reapply sunscreen," advises Professor Rachel Neale, Deputy Coordinator of the Population Health Department at the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute.
"People with fair to olive/ medium skin should apply sunscreen to all parts of the skin not covered by clothing on all days when the UV index is forecast to reach three or more at any time during the day. In Queensland, this is essentially every day of the year."
On top of ensuring you're practising sun-safe behaviours, self-checking your skin if you notice any changes, and booking an appointment with a GP for a skin check.
Aussies (especially Queenslanders) hit the beach year-round — it's not uncommon to see folks braving the beach as the sun rises to catch an early morning swell, or to take an arvo dip in an ocean pool after work. Even if the return of the rashies is an extension of the never-ending Y2K revival, we're here for anything that promotes sun safety — and it's even bigger plus that they're chic-as-hell now too.
Don't let your guard down this winter. Slip on a long sleeve shirt, slop on 30+ sunscreen, slap on a broad-brimmed hat, seek shade and slide on wraparound sunglasses.
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