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Dangerous new summer trend could increase chances of cancer by 50 percent

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INDIANAPOLIS -- Summer is here -- and so is a dangerous new trend called "sunburn art."

Sunburn art is a new trend where people are using sunscreen to draw designs on their bodies before going into the sun.

The idea is to get a severe sunburn so that the "design" created with the sunscreen is visible.

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Credit: WXIN

Dermatologists say this fad can actually increase your risk for melanoma by 50 percent.

“It is intense sunburn, which increases your risk for melanoma which is the most deadly of the skin cancers,” Dr. Christopher Obeime, a dermatologist with St. Vincent Health, told WXIN.

Sunburn art can also make your skin age faster, according to dermatologists.

“The collagen gets fragmented and gets old, it looks like old skin. The more sun exposure you have the sooner your skin gets the changes that we are talking about,” Obeime told WXIN.

Melanoma, which can develop after prolonged sun exposure, is one of the deadliest forms of cancer.

“Getting unprotected sun can definitely increase your risk for skin cancer and accelerate your skin aging,” NYU dermatologist Dr. Nada Elbuluk told PIX11 News.

“We know that getting five or more skin burns over the course of your life can double your risk for melanoma,” Elbuluk added.

Doctors recommend wearing SPF 30 sun block while spending time outdoors. They also said sun block creams work much better than the spray.

An estimated 73,000 cases of invasive melanoma will be diagnosed in the United States in 2015, according to the American Cancer Society.

Melanoma accounts for less than two percent of skin cancer cases but the majority of skin cancer deaths.

“I think it goes with the mentality that people believe this won’t happen to me. Because more than two intense sunburns increases your chances for melanoma by 50 percent,” Obeime told WXIN.