Being born with pale practically see-through skin, I have always wanted to know what it was like to have the “kissed by the sun” look that tanning brings. As a child we we’re lucky to go abroad several times a year, the norm now but not so much then. There was no such thing as sunscreen and my father would say put olive oil and lemon on like the locals and you’ll soon be brown.
We had friends from Sweden who sat in the sun from sun up till sun down, the went through every layer of skin possible. The damage we did must have been incredible, perhaps the ozone layer was thicker then but it must have still have done untold damage. Sun beds are even worse, there are lame comments about banning them but it is such big business I can’t imagine that would ever happen. There is no excuse for it these days, yet the numbers of skin cancer are on the increase, one of the key concerns from customers in salon is pigmentation damage from the sun.
It does make you feel so different when you have a ‘bit of colour’ but how can you have that colour without the risk of melanomas?
Skip the sunbathing, pass on the tanning beds, buy a new bottle of sunscreen, and use these alternatives to get your body glowing with a healthier tan.
If you like the look of bronzed skin but want to protect yourself from cancer, apply a self-tanner. With dozens of products on the market safer than the actual sun, some of these lotions, gels, and aerosol sprays also have SPF in them. Self-tanning is the least expensive method of having a healthy glow and can be used whenever you feel like using it, however if not done properly or dried in time, streaks may be seen and parts of your skin that are delicate (palms of hands, bottom of feet, in between toes and fingers, elbows, knees, etc.) can become orange.
Try a professional spray tanning for the flawless tan look a lot of us covet.For around £20 to £30 get a spray tan. A few hours later you will be shades darker than your usual skin colour and in pictures look fresh from a tropical vacation. In addition to the hand-held airbrush tans, there are also automatic booths designed to spray you within a few seconds. Spray tanning doesn’t leave streaks or strange orange tints to the skin and can last for a week to ten days. You can top it up with a gradual tanner, there are some amazing ones out there, just remember to wash your hands well afterwards.
If you are having a spray tan ahead of a holiday to hit the beach with instant colour make sure that you still protect your skin from the sun. Antioxidant rich foods can also give you a boost, read our article on foods to prepare your skin for sun, Super sun foods.