As the days get shorter and the temperature slowly drops across the state, the Institute's Pretty Shady campaign is urging young Aussies to stay sun safe in the face of an off-season burn.
New figures show complacency towards sun protection is a big risk factor as cooler months set in across NSW.
Only 35 per cent of 13-17 year olds believe they are at a high risk of developing skin cancer, whilst almost one in five adolescents (19 per cent) and one in four young adults (29 per cent) still say they can’t be bothered to protect themselves. 
Despite this, autumn and winter months in NSW can still produce UV levels posing a danger to our skin.
Professor David Currow, Chief Cancer Officer and CEO of the Cancer Institute NSW, says sun protection is important all year round.
“When the UV level is at 3 or above, you’re at risk of developing skin cancer,” he says.
“For 11 months of the year we see UV levels this high, which is why it’s critical to make sun safety something you practice every day of the year.”
UV levels can be high and above across seven months in Sydney, with only four weeks of the year deemed low enough to safely stay outdoors throughout the day without sun protection.
Heading north to Newcastle, statistics show the city barely drops into the low range for average UV levels during winter.
Professional surfer and Pretty Shady ambassador Sally Fitzgibbons says sun safety is always something to consider, even if you think you know the conditions.
“I have olive skin so it can be quite deceiving sometimes to think you’re not getting burnt, especially when it’s a cloudy day,” she says.
“But the fact is that damage can still be happening.”
“Wherever I am around the world, I always make sure I have SPF moisturisers with me.”
So what should you do?
Pretty Shady is empowering young Aussies to change their behaviour with the message that sun safety doesn’t mean sacrificing outdoor fun or your style.
Data shows 74 per cent of 13-17 year olds are realising they can help avoid melanoma and other skin cancers by simply protecting themselves in the sun.
Check the UV index in your area and use sun protection measures: shade, clothing, hat, glasses and sunscreen.
 Cancer Institute NSW Skin Cancer Online Tracking Survey 2015/16. The Skin Cancer Online Tracking survey was established by the Cancer Institute NSW in 2006/07, it is an online tracking survey conducted each year throughout late spring and summer targeting people in NSW. The sample size of the 2015/16 survey was 2,360 people.