It can be difficult to maintain a good tan during the sunless and cold, winter months unless you’ve taken a beach vacation or are lucky enough to live somewhere warm and sunny year-round. However, for most of us, our skin quickly loses its summer glow and pales throughout the winter. While tan skin may be a confidence booster, it doesn’t mean you should hit the tanning bed. There are many reasons to avoid dangerous sunless tanning booths and a number of safe ways to obtain a radiant tan.
Avoiding the Tanning Bed
We’ve all heard it before. There is plenty of information and awareness out there warning people of the dangers that come with tanning beds. However, the industry is still making profits and people are developing skin cancer at insane rates. Here are some of the most important and crucial reasons to avoid the bed.
- Risk of Skin Cancer: Sunless tanning booths are a known carcinogen, meaning they are a recognized avenue to developing cancer. Tanning beds increase your risk of developing skin cancer by 59 percent. Each time you visit a bed, this percentage increases. Your risk not only increases for mild skin cancers, but also for the most deadly form of skin cancer, known as melanoma. Melanoma most commonly occurs on the skin, but ocular melanoma can appear on the eye, causing vision loss.
- Wrinkles: All types of UV rays, or the sun’s harmful rays, cause skin damage. With tanning beds, you are given direct exposure to UVA and UVB rays, with little to no protection. UV rays are known to cause wrinkles in sunbed users of all ages. These beds weaken the skin elasticity and will cause wrinkles to come sooner rather than later.
- Skin Texture: Not only do tanning beds cause wrinkles, but they cause a complete overhaul of your skin’s health. Your skin’s texture can change with the use of indoor tanning, causing it to have a leathery texture. In addition, tanning beds cause dark spots to appear on the face and other parts of the body, creating skin tone variation.
Tanning Bed Users
The first thing you should do if you use a tanning bed is to stop. If you visit an indoor tanning bed regularly or used to, you should also see your dermatologist regularly and performing skin checks. With such a heightened risk of skin cancer, it is important to monitor your skin so that cancer can be treated immediately. You may feel embarrassed to admit to your dermatologist that you use tanning beds. However, it is important to be honest with your doctor so they know and understand your risk factors and can offer you appropriate care.
Safe Alternatives for Sunless Tanning
- Spray Tan: Many indoor tanning locations offer spray tan options. When people think of spray tans, they fear looking like a carrot or having an uneven tan. With today’s technology, spray tans have become much more reliable and natural. For the same cost as a tanning bed membership, you can get regular sprays and still have the bronzed skin you desire.
- Tanning Lotion: Just like spray tans, tanning lotions have become much more reliable and look incredibly natural. There are tanning lotions available anywhere in your price range and desired skin tone. Many tanning lotions offer “buildable tans,” meaning you continue to apply for multiple days until you reach your desired tone.
- Rock Your Natural Skin: The simplest and most cost-effective way to avoid sunless tanning is to rock your natural skin. Everyone has different skin tones. There will always be someone paler than you and someone who is tanner than you. When considering your skin, don’t spend time fretting over how tan it is and begin to care for its overall health instead.
It’s time to put your skin’s health first. Be sure to avoid tanning beds. If you have been a regular indoor tanner, be sure to make an appointment to have your skin checked and cared for today. If you have already administered a skin check and have found some things that raise alarm, it is also time to make an appointment. The dermatologists at Knoxville Dermatology Group have experience treating hundreds of skin conditions and are ready to care for you as well. To book an appointment visit the website or call at (865) 690-9467.