Unfortunately, there is a widely recognized myth about “base tans.”
Many tanning salons and tanning enthusiasts rave about the benefits of catching a little artificial color before a vacation or prolonged time in the sun. They claim that a “base tan,” from a tanning bed, will allow you to spend more hours in the sun without sunscreen or risk of sunburn.
While that may seem logical, we promise it is not true. Any change to your natural skin color indicates that damage has been done. A suntan, even light one, can lead to DNA damage, a suppressed immune system and photoaging. Pre-tanning to get a “base tan” may give the illusion of protection, because the burning sensation may be less or it may be harder to notice additional skin color change, but the damage is still being done.
Tanning beds emit sun-like, ultraviolet (UV) radiation. This radiation is so harmful that the United States Department of Health & Human Services lists UV radiation from the sun and artificial tanning devices, like tanning beds, a carcinogen (cancer causing substance.)
So, if you’re wondering what the safest way is to prevent a sunburn: where sunblock. If you’re wondering the safest way to tan: don’t. The bottom line is that tanning just isn’t good for your skin’s health. Pale is the new tan, people! Slather on the SPF and embrace your natural color. If you feel you must have a little more color, get a UV-free spray tan or grab some self-tanner. There are so many self-bronzing products that can offer you the appearance of sun-kissed skin, without the damage and risk of skin cancer.
If you are in need of a beautiful glow, we recommend Image Skincare’s Facial and Body Bronzing Crème.