Skarlette has built a supportive community which includes women who have undergone surgery for breast cancer, those awaiting surgery, family and friends of these women and others who simply choose to be part of the Skarlette family. Via our social media and through our responsiveness to direct customer messaging, we always ensure that we:
- promptly reply
- provide support
- promote body positivity and confidence
We also collaborate with several companies and charities who share our ethos and, together, we can help a woman’s journey through breast cancer to be just that little bit easier to navigate.
Through the relationships that we continue to build, Skarlette is supporting 3 international events and 2 UK events during October and November. We are incredibly proud to be sponsoring two US Flat Fashion Shows and will be seeing our lingerie on the catwalks of Colorado and Chicago. Sweden is the remaining location for our pieces to hit the catwalk during their International Flat Day Gala. One lucky lady taking part in the Chicago event has also won a bespoke ball gown made to measure by my co-founder and Skarlette designer, Kate.
Through my own breast cancer experience, I am in a unique position to understand and empathise with many of our customers and with the challenges they face. Being an ambassador for the charity Prevent Breast Cancer (PBC), Skarlette is also keen to raise awareness of breast health and breast cancer and to support the work of the charity.
An incredible 45 runners joined “Team Skarlette” to support PBC in last year’s Manchester 10K, raising an impressive £7.5K. We take Skarlette on tour with pop-up shops in boutiques, alongside PBC information and educational material, providing space and time for women to talk. As an active ambassador, I am currently undertaking a personal 55k challenge with my daughter to raise both awareness and funds, which is both challenging and enjoyable in equal measure.
Having taken part in PBC’s BooBee campaigns (2019 & 2022), I have seen first-hand how important it is to get out into the community; to be accessible and convenient. This enables women from all backgrounds and ethnicities to have the opportunity to learn as evidence suggests some ethnic minority groups have difficulty accessing screening and medical attention due to a variety of obstacles including language barriers. Although breast cancer rates are highest in the UK amongst white women, screening attendance, stage and age of diagnosis, survival outcomes, and experiences of care and treatment amongst women from an ethnically diverse background can result in lower screening uptake and subsequently worse outcomes.
For example, factoring breast cancer majorly, black women have the highest death rate. This could be because they receive a diagnosis later in the development of breast cancer. African American women have been found by a study to receive a cancer diagnosis at a more advanced stage than white women. This is according to the BWHI. Other trusted sources suggest that regardless of race, breast cancer is the most diagnosed form of cancer from women. Due to cancer women of colour have higher death rates. This might be because, as some studies have shown to be the primary difference between women of colour and white women, they receive diagnoses at later stages.
The BWHI suggest strongly that it is important for cancer education and early detection to be in place for the prevention of breast cancer and deaths resulting therefrom. They emphasise this all the more for women that have high risk factors, such as showing signs of gene mutations or a family history of breast cancer. Mammograms about 5 to 10 years earlier than other women are a necessity as per the BWHI’s advice for such women.
BRCA1 and BRCA2 are two of the most common genes with inherited breast cancer cases. With about 5% of those coping with breast cancer these gene mutations are prevalent. However these statistics have been sourced from non-Hispanic Caucasian women.
In 2015 a study on Black women identified that they had more BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes than non-Hispanic white women than scientists were led to believe before. The experiments revealed that about 12% of Black women living with invasive breast cancer tested positive for one of these gene mutations. This puts women of colour at significant risk and enough that, like all women, perhaps more so, they ought to talk to their doctor about undergoing genetic testing.
Socioeconomic status also plays a role in the likelihood of developing rates of metastatic breast cancer due to differences between African American women and Caucasian women’s status in this sense. According to the BWHI, African American women are more likely to experience delays in diagnosing and treating breast cancer. One study mentions ethical reasons for not tackling individuals’ hazards at coming to this illness in lower-income areas.
The study targeted diverse backgrounds of non-white origin including Latina and African American women in these lower-income areas to ascertain the possibility that introducing the knowledge of increasing the awareness of the hazards of breast cancer and its development would decrease the rate of mortality. The results told us amazing things: these individual risk assessments might aid women from underrepresented or neglected communities to get tested and treated quicker, thereby decreasing the risk of mortality.
Raising awareness and starting conversations will help to increase knowledge eventually and, ultimately, bring down the rates of cancer deaths amongst all within our communities. There are some people who work tirelessly to do this. There are also those who have been through their own cancer journey only to emerge as someone who is making a positive impact on the lives of others through their own experiences. Our society needs people like this.
We are particularly keen to represent the rich and diverse cultures living in the North West of England and intend to recognise and celebrate our local unsung heroes in the cancer community from all backgrounds, genders and ages. It is with this in mind that Skarlette & C-Lash decided to collaborate and join forces to create an opportunity for this to happen. We are excited to host the North West Cancer Awards which will take place in Cheshire this October.