5 Interesting Facts About Tanning

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It’s summer, it’s beach/vacay season and it’s time to hit the beach and get some tan going right? Well, that depends on your priorities. If you want to stay healthy, young, and beautiful longer then maybe tanning isn’t the best idea.

Interesting Tanning Facts


What’s A Tan?

The effect of tanning isn’t a “sun kiss” or a cosmetic beautifying treatment. It’s more like the sun punching you with its energy till your skin gets damaged kind of effect. Tanning is a reaction of skin cells to UV radiation damage that makes cells called melanocytes produce more pigment melanin to let skin absorb more of that radiation and prevent further damage. But it doesn’t mean you are protected now by your skin. If you don’t wear sunscreen you’re running the risk of getting a sunburn, which is your immune system’s response to UV damage when skin cells kill themselves off to prevent becoming malignant (cancerous). This is a body’s natural defense mechanism but it still does not prevent people from getting cancer.

That Leathery Look

There is this thing called photo aging that is caused by UV overexposure, which gives skin that leathery look and wrinkles. The researchers found that the skin cells affected with UV radiation carry some sort of DNA mutations that lead to premature aging.

Tanning Evenings

Tanning isn’t healthy, at all. So if you think that tanning it’s somehow different during evenings or early hours, it’s not. Damaging UVA rays are constant throughout the day so it doesn’t really matter when you’re tanning if you’re doing so without sun protection. Of course, since UVB rays peak between ten in the morning and two o’clock it’s best to stay indoors.

Sunscreen and Tan

Ideally sunscreen provides you with protection from the sun radiation, which means it’s like a shield that doesn’t allow sun rays to harm your skin. Since tan is a direct response to UV damage a proper sunscreen wouldn’t allow you to tan (at least not much) especially if you are following the instructions and re-applying it every two hours. Self-tanners and bronzers can give you the desired look but then you should study their ingredients and effects really carefully as well as apply sunblock every time you step outside.

Tanning Beds Ban

There’s lot of research and speculation going on about the harm of tanning beds and the link between indoor tanning and rising melanoma rates. So some countries have began regulating their use especially by minors and people under 18. Brazil was the first country to ban tanning beds for entire population. At the beginning of this year six out of eight Australian territories banned those as well. Countries like United Kingdom, Spain, and Germany restrict tanning beds use for minors along with some US states. The FDA requires warnings to be present on the beds stating the procedure is moderate risk and should not be used by people under 18.

So here you go. The bottom line is, you absolutely can enjoy the sun, the ocean, just be sure to protect your skin to avoid premature aging, and increased skin cancer risks.

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Mona Liz

Mona Liz is a beauty and healthy lifestyle enthusiast with a passion for writing, music, cats, fitness, and food.

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