Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women worldwide. This is why tennis champion Serena Williams encourages women across the globe to regularly examine their bosoms in an effort to help detect it early, PEOPLE reports.
“This Breast Cancer Awareness Month I’ve recorded a version of the Divinyls global hit ‘I Touch Myself’ to remind women to self-check regularly,” wrote Williams in a recent Instagram post.
In the video, Williams sings the hit 1990 song while topless and covering her breasts. The video was released in collaboration with the I Touch Myself Project. The initiative encourages women to pay attention to how their breasts look and feel and to visit a doctor if something doesn’t feel right.
View this post on Instagram
This Breast Cancer Awareness Month I’ve recorded a version of The Divinyls global hit “I Touch Myself” to remind women to self-check regularly. _ Yes, this put me out of my comfort zone, but I wanted to do it because it’s an issue that affects all women of all colors, all around the world. Early detection is key - it saves so many lives. I just hope this helps to remind women of that. _ The music video is part of the I Touch Myself Project which was created in honor of celebrated diva, Chrissy Amphlett, who passed away from breast cancer, and who gave us her hit song to remind women to put their health first. The project is proudly supported by @BerleiAus for Breast Cancer Network Australia. _ Visit the link in my bio to find out more. #ITouchMyselfProject #BerleiAus #BCNA #DoItForYourself
The I Touch Myself Project was launched in 2014 following the death of Chrissy Amphlett of the Divinyls, an Australian rock band, from breast cancer the previous year. Amphlett, age 53, believed “I Touch Myself” could one day serve as an anthem to help educate people about breast cancer.
In addition, the Australian lingerie brand Berlei partnered with the initiative to create a limited-edition bra inspired by Amphlett. The Chrissy Bra collection includes a T-shirt bra lined with the words “I Touch Myself” and a post-surgery bra for women who have undergone breast cancer surgery.
All proceeds from sales of the bra are donated to the Breast Cancer Network Australia, which advocates on behalf of Australians affected by the disease.
“Yes, this put me out of my comfort zone, but I wanted to do it because it’s an issue that affects all women of all colors, all around the world,” Williams wrote. “Early detection is key—it saves so many lives. I just hope this helps to remind women of that.”
However, experts say research shows no clear benefit from periodic hands-on breast examinations.
The American Cancer Society notes that “most often when breast cancer is detected because of symptoms (such as a lump), a woman discovers the symptom during usual activities such as bathing or dressing.”
But women should nevertheless be familiar with how their breasts normally look and feel and report any sudden changes to a physician immediately.
Click here to learn about the life-threatening risk Serena Williams faced following the delivery of her daughter.