Great Ways to Tan

by Amy Pusey
(last updated September 16, 2015)

The grey days of winter have now passed, and you discover the lack of sunshine has left you with skin looking dull and colorless. You are not alone, and there are a variety of ways to create a golden summer tan. While the tried-and-true method for some of you may be to head outdoors and bake in the sun, you should think twice about taking this approach because of the risks of sunburn and skin cancer.

So, if you want to add a little color to your life by adding a little color to your complexion, consider one of the safer sun tanning alternatives. You should take note that these options do not include tanning beds, which can be more dangerous to the skin than actual sun exposure due to the intensity and close proximity of the ultraviolet rays.

  • Bronzers. An inexpensive and temporary skin stain, they are usually sold in dust-on powders and moisturizing lotions. Often used mainly for adding a hint of color to the face, arms, and chest areas.
  • Self-Tanning Lotions. A variety of brands are available at any cosmetic counter located in drug stores, supermarkets, and department stores. An even application is necessary for a natural-looking tan. Once applied, the color stain will appear in a few hours time. The color does not appear instantaneously following application. Some of these lotions can be messy, as well as sticky, and they may require you to wait 15-20 minutes to dry before coming in contact with your clothes.
  • Spray Tanning Booths. These booths are popular for ensuring an even, all-over tan with the tanning color being sprayed onto the body. The spray-on color usually lasts for one to two weeks before requiring a follow-up application. When using a tanning booth, it is safest to avoid the eyes and lips. It is also important not to inhale the spray or vapors during the application process. While spray tanning is generally quick-drying, you may want to wear an outfit that is not a favorite in case any color transfers to your clothes when you redress following application.
  • Airbrush Tan. The most expensive of the sunless tanning options, but considered a safer choice to the tanning booth because of the greater control of the color application. In this method, the color is sprayed on with a spray compressor by a trained salon technician. The technician also takes the necessary precautions to protect your eyes, lips, and other sensitive areas that should not be exposed to the color spray. The color from this process should last four to seven days.

One other method of sunless tanning that you may have heard of before is the tanning pill. However, you should not consider this as a safe alternative because of the color additive contained in the pill. You should take note that the pill has been previously associated with serious health problems, such as liver damage.

Well, face it, you have plenty of alternatives to achieve that golden-brown tan you greatly desire without having to risk your skin health to the damaging effects of the sun. No matter which sunless tanning option you choose, include regular exfoliation as part of your routine because this will help develop a more even coloring. Also, you do not need to totally avoid the sun. Limit your exposure to less than 30 minutes during the least hot period of the day, as the sun does promote Vitamin D, which is needed for strong bones. Remember, always use sunscreen whenever you venture out into the sunshine.

Author Bio

Amy Pusey

With over 18 years experience in operations and human-resource management, Amy Pusey uses her skills in her consulting and freelance writing activities. She is a freelance writer for Tips.net, as well as a resume writer for GreenThumbResumes.com. ...

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