If your part of the U.S. is finally emerging from a gray, dreary winter into spring, you may be eager to spend a few hours sunbathing to achieve that early summer glow. But for those who can't manage hours of direct sun exposure in the next month or two, a few brief sessions in an indoor tanning bed can seem like a simple (and relaxing) shortcut to a healthy-looking tan. Unfortunately, the high concentration of ultraviolet (UV) rays used in indoor tanning beds may not be the best choice for those who have other skin cancer risk factors. Read on to learn more about the many advantages an airbrush tan can hold over a natural one.
Eliminate the Risk of Powerful UV Rays
One of the advertised advantages of an indoor tanning bed is its ability to get an end-of-summer tan in a relatively short amount of time. This speed makes tanning beds a favorite of those who need to tan quickly in preparation for a vacation, a wedding, a first date, or a family photo session. However, it comes at a cost. By concentrating UV rays at a greater frequency than natural sunlight, tanning beds accelerate the tanning process and penetrate into the deeper layers of skin.
This deep tanning can increase the risk of melanoma and other types of harmful skin cancers in those who are already prone to skin cancer (such as those with a higher-than-average number of skin moles, fair skin, a family history of skin cancer, or a history of blistering sunburns as a child).
But tanning outdoors isn't free from risk either. The only way to gain a tan without risking damage to your skin is by using a spray tan, a harmless pigment formula that essentially "stains" your outer layers of skin to achieve a bronzy glow. For those who tend to burn or turn pink instead of tanning, a sunless tan can be the only way to go for a summery look.
Provide a Lasting Glow Without Lasting Damage
Today's application technologies and sunless tanning formulas have helped create tans that last longer than ever. In fact, many of today's sunless tans actually last longer than a natural one, eliminating the need for weekly visits to the salon. And just like a UV tanning booth, sunless tanning booths can build on your base tan to help you achieve deeper tones that last all summer long.
It is important for sunless tanners to note that, unlike a natural tan, a sunless tan provides no additional skin protection from UV rays. If you want to avoid a sunburn, you'll need to apply a tanning-formula-friendly sunscreen whenever you're planning a day of sun exposure. If you're interested in getting a beautiful bronzy glow for summer, call your local tanning salons to learn more.