• 09.10.12

New PSA Goes Full Boob To Raise Awareness Of What Breast Cancer Looks Like

Several sets of exposed chests drive home the point in a breast cancer PSA.

There are many clever ways to drive home the message that women should be regularly examining their breasts for signs of cancer. What might be even more effective, though, is a visual aid showing them exactly what those signs are.


A new ad commissioned by the Scottish Government has gone far beyond the typical check-for-lumps message to clarify with stark images and plain language what the lesser known symptoms are. Created by The Leith Agency, the new ad features bare-shouldered actress Elaine C Smith holding up a series of signs across her chest, each endowed with actual-size photos of breasts exhibiting different symptoms of the disease. Smith has a personal stake in helping to get the message out, having lost her own mother to cancer (Note: As noted, the video below contains boobs, so consider that your NSFW flag, though there’s no reason you shouldn’t watch this at work).

The Leith Agency worked with the chief health officer of Scotland and cancer specialists to create images that were as accurate as possible of the various unsung early signs of breast cancer. The resulting ad, which the agency claims is U.K. TV’s first to feature fully exposed breasts, is eye-opening, to say the least.

About the author

Joe Berkowitz is a writer and staff editor at Fast Company. His next book, Away with Words, is available June 13th from Harper Perennial.