Many of us tan because it makes us feel more attractive. Tanned skin can make a person look thinner, and provide that ironically labeled “healthy glow.” Of course, tanning beds are anything but healthy, listed in the top cancer risk category, as UV radiation has been linked to skin cancers including melanoma. Still, if you can’t be without your bronze skin, you’re in luck: there many healthy options for creating a natural-looking tan.
1. Sunless Tanning Lotions
The options in bronzing lotions include a wide array of skin shades, as well as prices. You’ll be able to find a color that suits your skin tones, and decide whether you want to go with a pricey lotion from a department store, or an inexpensive one from a drugstore. Sunless tanning lotions used to be rather stinky, but as the cancer risk of UV rays became more widely understood, these products have undergone major improvements, working better, looking more natural, and smelling nicer. As long as you’re careful when applying the lotion, you’ll have an even-looking tan. Plus, you get the added benefit of moisturized skin.
When you go in for a “spray tan,” you’ll get a nice even tan that lasts about a week. Spray tan’s benefits include the quick application time—ten minutes—and expert evenness. A weekly spray tan will cost more than a bottle of sunless tanning lotion, but many individuals prefer it as a hassle-free method of gaining a tan.
3. Natural Sunlight
Sunshine emits UV rays, but 10 times fewer than a tanning bed. If you choose to lie out, be sure to use sunscreen. You may not get a deep tan quickly, but you will help protect your skin from premature aging and skin cancer. Many doctors warn against unprotected skin exposure to the sun. If you’re going to spend a day at the beach, be smart about it.
As an alternative to self-application of sunless tanning lotions, tanning towels are a less-messy way to apply sunless lotion. You can purchase individually-wrapped towlettes that you simply use and toss.
Bronzer is a great way to provide that sun-kissed glow to your face. After all, who wants their face to be exposed to UV and start aging prematurely? For those who want a one-night tan, body makeup may also be used.
It is important to remember that with any of these options, sunscreen should always be used when outdoors. Even after you’ve gotten your tan, your skin is susceptible to UV damage.
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