Live. Laugh. Tan.

Now that summer has officially started and the hottest weather has yet to arrive, getting that gorgeous natural glow is a must for most. While most people feel they are aware of the negative side effects that come along with tanning, there are many more misconceptions that go unnoticed. As college students it is important to pay attention to our health. So before you jump into your next tanning bed or soak in the sun too long, learn the facts!

Natural sun tans: People seem to think outdoor tanning is the safest way to do it. This is definitely true. However, staying in the sun too late can become a major cause for age spots, discoloration or even gene mutations that cause skin cancer. Most people will suffer from sunburn even with an adequate amount of sunscreen. On the brighter side, outdoor tanning allows the body to soak in tons of vitamin D. According to the Livestrong Health, the best way to make sure this happens is to use sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 15. This will result in higher UVB protection. However, if you have a family history of skin cancer or extremely fair skin, getting a sunscreen with SPF 30 will be a much better fit.

Indoor tanning beds: These have skyrocketed in popularity over the past couple years, as they serve as a quick way to get that bronze glow. But does convenience outweigh safety? In general, because you are in the bed for a shorter amount of time, skin burns decrease greatly. But don’t forget that UV rays are still being placed directly on you. According to, both UVA and UVB rays can lead to cancer, and those under the age of 35 have a 75 percent higher risk of melanoma in the future. Yes, melanoma, the deadliest type of skin cancer. It is highly recommended to take extra precautions when using tanning beds to avoid even the smallest risk.

Spray tans: They are probably the safest method of tanning, and to most they are probably the least amount of fun. Spray tans only affect the outer layer of your skin, and no UV rays are involved. However, there are some cons. A bad application of the tan will leave a very unnatural look. The zebra look isn’t really for everyone and neither is the oompa-lumpa. On top of a bad look, spray tans can be messy. Many will leave clothes and sheets golden yellow or brown. Making sure you find somewhere to apply and someone to properly apply the tan is key to a believable look.

At the end of the day it is summer and we girls just want to look beautiful, eat well and have fun. Start by staying smart and researching the best tan for you. For more information on how to properly tan and which sunscreen to use check out Enjoy your summer, College Glossers!

By: Khadijah McGill | Image: Source


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