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Skin-Safe Alternatives to Sun Tanning for a Healthy Glow

Sometimes you just need a beach day

Tanning became a popular trend in the 1920s, when Coco Chanel and other high-fashion icons began to promote the appeal of “sun-kissed” skin. Images of lazing on the beach and relaxing in nature became quickly associated with tanned skin, and the idea of the “healthy glow” became affixed in our collective imaginations.

Of course, we know these days that sun tanning is actually dangerous. The changes in pigment that occur when skin is exposed to the sun are signs of damage, and can lead to wrinkles, uneven pigmentation, and skin cancer. Now science shows us that sun protection is a vital aspect of skin care – but what if you still prefer the summery look of a tan? There are a few safe options!

Numerous tanning lotions or “spray tans” exist on the market to provide a darker appearance to your skin without causing any real damage. As an added benefit, many have moisturizing properties and some include SPF for genuine sun protection. Shop around to find a quality product that will produce a natural-looking shade that suits your skin tone.

If you’d prefer a more natural and subtle look, opt for a little bronzer to add some color to your face. Or go the other direction with a good moisturizing routine, a bit of highlighter, and a touch of shimmer powder for a dewy look. Dewy skin is just as youthful and summery as a tan, and is definitely an “in” look right now.

Of course, a little natural sunlight isn’t a bad thing. The trick is to slowly build up your darkened complexion over time, through short and repeated exposure to the outdoors. Just be sure to wear a good sunscreen with SPF 35 or higher to protect against the more harmful UV rays, and don’t stay out too long without taking some breaks in the shade.

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