Traditional Tanning Oils Contain Harsh Chemicals and Potentially Dangerous Ingredients
Don't Risk It. Learn the Real Facts About Tanning Safely.
Summer's here! The sun is finally shining and you can't wait to get outdoors to enjoy it.
You've probably heard how being in the sun is a terrific way to support your overall health and wellbeing, especially with its extraordinary vitamin D benefits... But, right now, you're thinking more about how to get your picture perfect tan as quickly as possible than anything else.
You know what I'm talking about...
A summertime tan that is rich and dark...
A flawless natural bronzed tan where you look and feel fabulous ...
A gorgeous healthy glow that fills you with confidence...
There really is something magical about a tan, isn't there?
That's why finding the ultimate tan is the Holy Grail for sun worshippers everywhere.
However, whether you're a casual sunbather, a dedicated sun lover, or are just looking for a quick tan so you can wear your favorite swimsuit, it's very important you educate yourself with the latest information on all available tanning products.
Finding the Ultimate Tan: Where You Should Start
As you know, there's a wide variety of tanning products available to you -- a quick search on Google will return hundreds of options. It's easy to get overwhelmed with your choices.
But, did you know that many of the most popular products on the market today contain ingredients that you probably would NEVER consider putting on your skin if you knew what they really were?
That's right -- many tanning products are filled with ingredients such as:
Harsh chemical irritants
Artificial dyes and fragrances
Preservatives and binding agents
And, believe it or not, even ingredients that have been shown to dry out your skin!
Now, is that what you're looking for in a tanning oil -- something that dries out your skin rather than keeps it moist and silky soft? I didn't think so.
Take a look at any sunscreen or tanning oil you have in your house right now.... you're sure to find a list of ingredients filled with long, unpronounceable names that are most likely chemicals that you don't want anywhere near your skin. With so many products on the market today, it's hard to know which are good for you and which are not. That's why Dr. Wellness is here today to give you the facts... When you know the facts, you can make informed and conscious decisions about your tanning products.
When you equip yourself with the proper knowledge, you're guaranteed the best tan ever...
that's also safe and healthy for you.
And, it begins by understanding the basics of safe tanning...
Start by Knowing the Basics: Top 5 Tips for Safe Tanning
Before you even begin thinking about heading out into the sun, you need to know the fundamentals of safe tanning.
No tanning product can help you if you're not practicing safe and effective sun sense.
If your skin is unused to the sun, it is important to build up your tolerance regularly and gradually.
It's good to start early in the year, in the spring and early summer.
This will prepare your skin for the stronger sunlight later in the year.
At the beginning of the season, go out gradually and limit your exposure to perhaps as little as 10 minutes a day.
Progressively increase time in the sun over a few weeks, you will be able to have normal sun exposure with little risk.
Here are my Top 5 Tips for Safe Tanning:
1. Keep It Early, Keep It Cool
Early morning is the best time to sunbathe if you have not already built up a base tan, because you're less likely to burn in the mild morning sun than later in the day. In addition, it's best to sunbathe when the temperature is below 64 degrees Fahrenheit (18 degrees Celsius), so that you don't overheat.
2. Keep It Regular
Regular sunbathing is extremely important; you can't cram all of your sun exposure into a two or three week vacation period and expect to experience the benefits. It's also important to treat your tanning as a medicine and control the dosage; frequent, short periods of exposure are best. You don't want to overindulge or skip too many days.
3. Show Some Skin
A common myth is that occasional exposure of the face and hands to sunlight is "sufficient" for vitamin D nutrition. For most of us, this may be an absolutely inadequate exposure to move vitamin levels to the healthy range. For optimal benefit, strive to have at least 40 percent of your skin uncovered.
4. Keep Track of the Time
In Caucasian skin, equilibrium can occur within 20 minutes of ultraviolet exposure. It may take 3 to 6 times longer for darkly pigmented skin to reach similar equilibrium concentrations of skin vitamin D. So, bearing in mind, gradually increase your time, starting in the spring, you should be aiming towards exposing large areas of your skin to the sun, anywhere from 20 minutes to 2 hours at a time, depending on your skin type and environmental factors.
5. Use Your Skin as a Guide
If you have light-colored skin, you can use the color of your skin to tell you when you've had enough sun and it's time to get in the shade (or cover up using a long-sleeved shirt, pants, and a hat). Stay out just long enough so that your skin turns the very lightest shade of pink.
Remember that continuing UV exposure beyond the minimal dose required to produce skin redness will not increase your vitamin D production any further.
Now that you have a handle on what you can do to get the perfect tan, it's time to learn what ingredients you must AVOID when choosing a tanning oil for use.
Warning: If You're Going to Tan, Avoid Tanning Oils that Contain These Ingredients...
When it comes to today's tanning oils, there almost should be a public health warning.
That's right -- many of today's leading brands contain harmful chemicals that nobody should be applying to their skin. Hidden behind fruity fragrances and promises of tropical tans lurk much more devious ingredients that potentially can do more harm than good for you. Let's take a look at some of the more common ingredients that you'll find in many tanning oils.
1. Mineral Oil
You probably already knew mineral oil is in many suntan products.
It sounds safe enough, right? Wrong!
Mineral oil is a derivative of petroleum... yes, petroleum like you put in your car's engine.
Because it's very viscous (slippery), many tanning products use mineral oil as the main ingredient -- it allows the tanning oil to be spread easily across the skin. But, even though it's a known carcinogen, as in it can cause cancer, and there are plenty of other safe alternatives that can serve the same function, for some reason hundreds of everyday products still contain it... including many tanning oils.
Mineral oil is also comedogenic which means it blocks your pores and your skin's natural respiration process. Blocked pores can lead to blackheads and pimples -- that's definitely not my idea of a perfect tan! And, because mineral oil can create an impenetrable film on your skin, it may actually block the absorption of any helpful ingredients that do exist in a given product.
Does that seem right to you?
An ingredient that may actually make the entire product less effective seems preposterous...
Finally, think you're safe because you don't see it listed on your label?
Sadly, that doesn't mean it isn't in there.
Mineral oil has countless different names, but each has the same effect... one you'll want to stay away from!
2. Sodium Hydroxymethyl Glycinate
Sodium Hydroxymethyl Glycinate is touted as a "natural preservative" and it's commonly found in tanning products.
Initially introduced as a replacement for paraben -- another preservative that had been potentially linked to cancer, but still found in tanning products -- Sodium Hydroxymethyl Glycinate is actually a skin and eye irritant in high concentrations.
Although it is true that Sodium Hydroxmethyl Glycinate is derived from the amino acid glycine, it is far from "natural" or "organic." Processed using numerous chemicals, Sodium Hydroxmethyl Glycinate has actually been found to contain formaldehyde, which is often used during manufacture.
Additionally, there is speculation that Sodium Hydroxmethyl Glycinate actually breaks down into formaldehyde once it's permeated the skin. Whether or not research will bear this out over time, you definitely don't want to take the risk now.
3. Artificial Fragrances and Colors
When it comes to smell, the fragrances used in your favorite tanning oils are often created from petrochemicals. There are literally hundreds of chemicals used to create pleasing scents (some less pleasing, in my opinion) -- many of which are known carcinogens (such as methylene chloride).
Is there anything refreshing about allergies, skin irritation, headaches, or nausea that can be a result of petrochemicals?
Plus, most artificial colors are made from petroleum and coal tar -- both thought to be cancer-causing. If you see a FD&C or D&C on your tanning oil label followed by a color and a number, then you're taking a risk. The biggest dangers seem to come from amber, blue, green, and yellow products.
If you're going to use a tanning product, you don't just want an artificial fragrance, you want to experience the real benefits of an all-natural oil.
That's just scratching the surface of potentially harmful chemical ingredients found in today's tanning oils.
You'll also find:
Amyl Acetate -- This ingredient is actually used in the dry cleaning business. It helps dissolve stains that usually aren't dissolved by other cleaning agents. A high-power cleaning agent? That doesn't sound like something I would willingly put on my body... would you?
Octyl Stearate -- Known as both an irritant and to be comedogenic, an ingredient that be a nuisance and clog your pores doesn't seem like the best way to go about getting that flawless tan.
Isopropyl Myristate -- Also comedogenic, so it causes blackheads and acne, Isopropyl Myristate is thought to bind to nitrates in the body... nitrates are a known carcinogen.
Add to that silicone, other chemical emulsifiers, and a HUGE list of ingredients that can potentially cause a whole spectrum of health challenges and it becomes pretty apparent why you should be very picky when it comes to selecting your tanning oil.
Your body, as well as your health, is far too important. It's just not worth it to risk your wellbeing with potentially unsafe products... even to achieve the perfect tan.