How To Get a Natural Tan

20150254d648ce622e1

It’s summer. You’re not all bundled up anymore, you’re going to be showing some skin! You want that skin to look great when you do, right? Tans are ideal because they hide more flaws and look healthier than pale, pasty skin. But we all know there is a huge difference between being TAN and being ORANGE!  We’ve all seen someone who overdoes it on the self-toner and spends a few hours too many in the tanning bed and comes out looking like an orange leather handbag…  No one wants to look like that! You want a healthy, glowing, NATURAL tan. So how do you get one? Well…

Your skin gets tan because the sun produces UV rays that penetrate your skin. These UV rays are actually pretty dangerous. It’s like being in a giant microwave.  So to protect your cells from literally baking, your body produces melanin to absorb these rays safely. This is what makes your skin darker. But getting a natural tan from the sun is sometimes tricky. There is a fine line between tanning and burning. Try as you might to protect yourself, I’m sure there’s been a time or two when you’ve gotten a dreaded sunburn. It looks and feels terrible. Painful, itchy, peeling, bright red skin is a far cry from healthy, gorgeous, glowing tan skin! But that’s just one of the risks of tanning outdoors in the sun. Long term sun exposure can deeply damage the anatomy of your skin cells and cause wrinkles, sun spots, and even skin cancer.  Tanning beds produce UV rays as well, so it works in much the same way. It also carries the same risks.

You might think that’s the only way to get a natural tan, but it’s actually not!  Airbrush tanning is another natural way to tan. (I know… I’ll give you a minute to pick up the pieces of your blown mind…)  It’s not a paint or a dye that gets applied to the skin like most people think it is, which is why it won’t leave you looking orange the way most self-tanners do. Airbrush tanning actually uses a non-toxic, completely organic compound called DHA.  It doesn’t cause wrinkles, sun spots, or skin cancer the way the sun can because it doesn’t penetrate deeply enough to damage your skin cells. DHA creates a chemical reaction within the amino acids in the very outermost layer of your skin. It’s a little bit like when you cut an apple and it begins to turn brown on the surface. This reaction does not involve the underlying skin pigmentation, nor does it require exposure to UV rays to initiate the change in color. It’s a natural, temporary color that looks just like a tan that occurs from melanin. Airbrush tans typically last about 7-10 days if you exfoliate properly before your appointment. It’s FDA approved and less expensive than you probably think it is for such an amazing treatment.

So the next time you want a natural tan, try airbrushing!

Advertisements

Is Airbrush Tanning Safe?

nyc-suvara-at-senses_480

After all of the research that proves how harmful sun exposure is and how tanning beds carry many of those same risks, I can understand how you might be curious about the safety of spray tans and airbrushing tanning as well.

Let’s start with the basics – What is an airbrush tan? How does it work?

When you get an airbrush tan, a technician uses as specialized tool to spray a solution on your skin which leaves you with a natural tan for approximately 7-10 days.  The solution contains Dihydroxyacetone or “DHA” – I know it sounds kind of scary, but DHA isn’t some sort of toxic chemical! In fact, it’s a completely NON-toxic, organic compound and it creates a reaction with the amino acids in the stratum corneum, which is the very outermost layer of your skin. This reaction is completely natural, it’s similar to the one that makes an apple turn brown when you cut into it. When you tan outdoors or in a tanning bed, the color change happens in the deepest layer of your skin, called the basal layer. UV Rays from the sun or the bed penetrate deeply into your body to initiate the color change, but it can also cause serious skin damage and even cancer. Your sun tan might be temporary, but the sun has broken down the DNA in your skin cells permanently. With DHA, nothing penetrates that deeply. The DHA stays on the surface of the skin and the reaction doesn’t affect anything below that first outer layer of skin. We are always shedding and re-growing skin. When that top skin flakes off, the color from your airbrush tan leaves with it. Nothing is permanent with an airbrush tan.

But is DHA safe?

The FDA has done extensive research and deemed DHA safe to use. You should not ingest the solution and you should not get it into your eyes, nose, or mouth. So, when you get an airbrush tan, keep your eyes and mouth closed, and don’t inhale the solution. Some people prefer to use nose clips as well, just to be safe. There are some people who have been known to have an allergic reaction to spray tans, but that’s usually due to other ingredients in the solutions used. If you’re sensitive and have many skin allergies, you might want to test a small area to see how it reacts before you do your whole body. Airbrush tanning does NOT carry the risk of skin cancer or photo-aging that the sun or tanning beds do.

There have been issues reported with other tanning products that are sometimes called tan enhancers, accelerators, promoters, or amplifiers. Many of these products interact with the sun to create an even deeper color, so they are actually accentuating the damage done to the skin by the sun itself. There are also oral pills, which are banned commercially in the U.S. and for good reason. They contain the carotenoid chemical (the same pigment found in carrots), and have been associated with a variety or disorders including hepatitis and hives.  Airbrush tanning contains NONE of these risks either. It won’t protect you from the dangers of the sun, though. So when you leave the house, you’re always encouraged to wear sunscreen with an appropriate SPF number to minimize your risk of damage from the sun.

So airbrush tanning is basically the safest way we’ve found to get a tan! It’s also the fastest. You can get a full body tan in about 15 minutes as opposed to laying in the sun for hours!  I bet you’ll be surprised to learn that it’s also quite affordable. Some salons, like Shine in Denver, even offer an option to do a mobile tanning session, where they bring the equipment to your house for you and tan you in the comfort of your own home! Give it a try and see for yourself. It’s fast, cheap, and SAFE! Why not?