Erin Young said being tan boosts her confidence, but she knows the dangers of the sun’s rays, so she gets her tan sprayed on each week.
"I take such good care of my insides that I feel like caring for my skin is something that I also need to do, and I feel like doing this is caring for my skin in a great way," Young said.
Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the United States. More than 3.5 million people are diagnosed each year. But with summer approaching, the allure of a bronze body is strong, so how do you tan without soaking in the sun’s harmful UV rays? A spray tan could be your safest solution.
Spray tanning has been around for years. It requires the use of dihydroxyacetone - or DHA, the active ingredient in self-tanning solutions, which was approved by the FDA for external use back in the 1970s.
“This is kind of bringing the best of both worlds where you can have some color, but you’re not damaging your skin; you’re not wrinkling your skin; you’re not putting more age spots onto your skin,” said Angela Alney, who owns a spray tan salon.
Each spraying session produces an instant tan that lasts about five to 10 days depending on your skin tone and activity level. Experts say it’s best to have your last spray tan completely faded before getting another.
“I liken it to fingernail polish where when it starts to come off, you need to get it all the way off before you put it on,” Alney said.
One spray tan session will cost you around $30 to $50, but most facilities offer discounted rates with multiple sessions.
Experts say you should wait at least eight hours after each session before you shower or do anything that would cause you to sweat. They also recommend matching your natural skin tone as closely as you can. Some people think darker tans lasts longer, but that isn’t the case.