Sunless Tanning Alternatives Provide A Healthy Glow Without The Risk

By Haywood Hunter

Traditional sunbathing may produce a "real" tan, but along with it comes the risk of premature aging signs like wrinkles and age spots and an increased incidence of skin cancer. Excessive UV exposure is also believed to be damaging to the eyes and to impair normal immune function. Sunless tanning options provide those who long for a bronzed complexion the tan they desire without all the health risks.

The spray tan is one of the most popular types of sun-free bronzing. Customers visit a tanning salon where they will remove their clothing and step into a private booth which is controlled by a push button which activates the spray system responsible for applying an even coating of a chemical called dihydroxyacetone or DHA. This substance reacts with the uppermost layer of skin cells to create a darker pigmentation that resembles a golden tan, that lasts for several days.

Some people prefer an airbrush tan, which is very similar to a spray tan in that it also uses DHA and lasts for a week, but it is applied differently. The client wears a bathing suit or underwear, covers the lips and eyes, then the technician will spray on the tanning solution using a spray compressor. It may cost more, but it is typically more precise, without streaks, and is less likely to get inhaled.

A self-tanner is an affordable alternative that is sold in most pharmacies and make-up counters. These are DHA-based lotions, sprays, or gels that must be massaged into the skin like other body creams. When using any DHA product, it always best to gently exfoliate the skin first in order to get the best results.

A bronzer is a cosmetic product which also provides some extra color, but it is normally only used on the face. These are sold in the form powders or liquid make-up, and once they are applied they make the face appear less pale, but they are not helpful for whole-body tanning. As with all cosmetics they simply wash off with cleanser and water.

Tanning pills are available in some places, but are deemed to be unsafe so they must be avoided. They have not gained the FDA's approval and contain a color additive known as canthaxanthin, which causes darkening of the skin but unfortunately has dangerous side effects including eye disorders, liver damage, and severe itching.

Regarded as safe in general, DHA does still have some precautions for safe use that should be followed. It is best not to inhale it, and to avoid it coming into contact with the lips and eyes. Some evidence suggests that it may cause alteration to the DNA of skin cells over time and that it should not be ingested, but if used carefully there is no need to worry.

In moderation, exposure to the sun can be healthy and is important for proper synthesis of Vitamin D which is needed by the body to keep the bones strong and for immune purposes and cell growth. It is also important to remember that proper protection from excessive UV exposure in the form of a sunblock should always be used when outdoors for extended periods.

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Sunless Tanning Alternatives Provide A Healthy Glow Without The Risk Sunless Tanning Alternatives Provide A Healthy Glow Without The Risk Reviewed by Jhenni Mello on 3:07 PM Rating: 5

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