Skin Cancer and Tanning Facts


Since 2008 when I first began spray tanning in California, many people asked me, "Why do I spray tan when there is so much sun outdoors?" And now that I live in South Beach, Miami, where there is even more sun, I get this question almost every day. The reason is I care about my skin and don’t want to expose myself to the risks of skin cancer. As an esthetician I care about the health of my clients skin. Exposure from UV rays, whether from the sun or from indoor tanning beds is incredibly dangerous. The World Health Organization classifies indoor tanning beds as a human carcinogen in the same category as plutonium and cigarettes. Repeated exposure to UV rays could result in an increase in risk of skin cancer as well change the texture of your skin. Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States and 1 in 5 people will be diagnosed in their lifetime. However, it is also highly preventable. Daily use of a high SPF sunscreen (I use SPF50) as well as wearing hats and using beach umbrellas will greatly reduce your risk. In addition to your health, the appearance of your skin is also affected by UV rays. 90% of visible skin aging is attributed to the sun. This does not mean you have to walk around looking like a porcelain doll. The healthy alternative to sun tanning is an organic spray tan. 

    Spray tanning has come a long way since it first became popular in the late 90’s with the mystic tan. Nowadays the tanning solutions are much more natural looking, do not smell and can pass for the real thing. It is important to find out which tanning solution your airbrush artist uses and make sure you do not have any allergies to the ingredients. I personally recommend using an organic solution that has no added oil, alcohol, nut ingredients or fragrance. Spray tanning solution is derived from DHA which is found in sugarcane. This ingredient makes a chemical reaction with the enzymes in your skin cells to turn them brown. The higher the percentage of DHA, the darker your tan will be. This process only affects the top layers of your skin so this is why it lasts for about 7 days. Your skin is constantly shedding itself and creating new skin cells. This is why a really good exfoliation of the skin with a loofah prior to the spray tan is so important. Not only will it make your tan last longer, it will also make your skin look even and smooth. Please remember to visit the Dermatologist once a year for an annual skin checkup and call them immediately if you notice anything unusual with moles or spots on your skin. For more information on tanning and skin cancer please visit

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