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Breast Cancer Awareness Month: What is It, Why Wear Pink & How to Support

Breast Cancer Awareness Month: What is It, Why Wear Pink & How to Support

January 11, 2024 by Giving Assistant Editorial Team

One woman is diagnosed with breast cancer every two minutes.

One in eight women in the U.S. will have invasive breast cancer in her lifetime.

Each year, about 40,000 American women die from the disease.

Breast cancer rate of diagnosis in US women

With breast cancer stats like these, it’s no wonder we dedicate an entire month to shine a light on the significance of early detection for the most common cancer affecting women worldwide.

But also to promote prevention and raise money to fund research and treatment options for all.

What is Breast Cancer Awareness Month?

Breast Cancer Awareness month is every year, between October 1st and October 31st. This awareness event happens worldwide during the month of October.

This awareness campaign is organized by many breast cancer charities with the intention of increasing awareness and educating people about the importance of early screening, testing, symptoms, and ways to help.

History of Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Breast Cancer Awareness Month was founded in 1985 as the American Cancer Society’s effort to promote mammography as the most effective way to combat breast cancer.

Presently one of the most recognizable health campaigns in existence, this larger-than-life health movement is now observed worldwide between October 1 and October 31 every year.

October sees an uptick in fundraising walks, runs, and other fundraising events that help fuel the goals of breast cancer charities and nonprofit organizations devoted to public education, supporting patients and their families, and funding projects seeking a cure.

History of the Pink Ribbon

The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation was the first to adopt the color pink as a symbolic color for breast cancer.

They gifted pink ribbons and visors to every breast cancer survivor and participant in their 1991 Komen New York City Race for the Cure.

Interestingly, the Foundation isn’t responsible for the national and international recognition we see the color receive today.

It was actually a joint venture between a women’s magazine and an iconic cosmetic brand that brought pink ribbons into the mainstream.

In 1992, special ribbons were made and distributed at Estée Lauder cosmetic counters in NY to commemorate Self magazine’s second annual Breast Cancer Awareness Month issue.

Since color plays a tremendously important role in ribbon symbolism; a lot of thought went into choosing the “150 Pink” that colored the 1.5 million+ ribbons handed out that year.

The Power of Pink

The color pink (especially in ribbon form) plays a significant role during Breast Cancer Awareness Month; it no doubt captures the public’s attention to the disease, unlike any other.

In October, everything pink takes over—from pink-tinted bagels at the coffee shop to pastel pink cleats hitting football fields of schools across America.

The color has an undeniably unifying global effect that not only helps spread awareness but also has a way of effectively encouraging more people to support and donate to the cause.

Because of this, breast cancer survival rates continue to rise.

And to date, breast cancer is considered one of the most treatable forms of the disease.

Why We Wear Pink

Pink is a symbol of health, healing, and empowerment within the breast cancer community.

Pink has a soothing, comforting effect on people and is known to encourage a positive, optimistic outlook on life. Just as calming as it is playful, it also conveys female strength.

Pink also suggests:

  • Nurturing
  • Tenderness
  • Compassion
  • Understanding

It’s seen as the color of “universal love of oneself and of others.”

But most importantly, pink is a beacon of hope.

Ways to Support Breast Cancer Charities

  1. We wear pink in October to show solidarity for the cause, but keep in mind that the breast cancer movement is so much more than merely embracing a single color.
  2. Try Charitable Shopping. Giving Assistant is a free shopping rewards platform that makes it easy for shoppers to both save money and give back to breast cancer-focused nonprofits with special offers from brands that are released on during October. Get inspired and give back with these thoughtful breast cancer gift ideas.
  3. When you sign up for Giving Assistant you have the option to donate 1% to 100% of the cash back you earn to over 17,000 nonprofit organizations.
  4. We’ve also created a list of breast cancer fundraising ideas to help inspire ways to help more giving for this important event.
  5. Donate to a Breast Cancer Charity or Organization.

Support Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Want to start shopping but need some suggestions? With 3,000+ Giving Assistant-partnered stores, that makes sense!

Since Breast Cancer Awareness month is as much about helping the women we love to feel supported and beautiful while battling cancer as it is about research, one idea might be to shop and save at some of our awesome beauty, fashion, or spa brands.

Giving Back with Giving Assistant

You can also help donate to breast cancer nonprofits all year round by using Giving Assistant with your everyday online shopping.

Download our Giving Assistant button (browser extension) to keep track of the latest online deals and promo codes that’ll help you automatically save money when shopping online and allow you to donate more to your favorite breast cancer non-profits throughout the year.