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Top 4 Sunless Tanning Methods

Tanning products, both sunless and sun, go to work on the epidermis, or the outside layer of your skin, and not the dermis or inner layer. However, the layer of epidermis that is affected by sunless versus the layer affected by sun tanning products differs. Sun tanning lotions, sprays, gels and other assorted items, go to work on the stratum basale or deepest layer. And sunless tanning items go to work on the stratum corneum or outermost layer.

Method 1 - Sunless Bronzers

Some sunless tanning products come in the form of moisturizers (as lotions and crèmes) and powders and are referred to as bronzers. Basically you simply apply these to your skin as you would make up products for a temporary "tan" appearance, similar to the effects of applied makeup leaving a "tint."

Then you just wash the bronzers off with soap and water; the "tan is removed with washing. Caution is needed so that the products do not stain clothing or other fabric. And care needs to be taken so that the applications do not streak or run when wet, similar to the results of mascara running. And finally, make sure that if you wear these products outdoors, they contain sunscreen in the ingredients; otherwise wear protective clothing, eyewear, etc.

Method 2 - Sunless Tanning Booths

Sunless tanning booths are becoming more popular. With an air compressor and an airbrush delivery system in one of these booths, skin receives a "tan." What happens is that pistons in the compressor quickly press or force air out via a nozzle in an airbrush or spray head. This air mixes with a tanning solution containing DHA that's inside compartments within the airbrush, and sprays this in a fine mist over the outer skin layer.

Some tanning booths have up to 36 of these airbrushes connected to the compressor and they are all either in fixed positions or moving. Thus tanning clients then either move under fixed sprayers so that skin is covered all over. Or else the tanner parts move to spray the different body parts (these types pose more mechanical maintenance issues though.)

Method 3 - Tanning Accelerators

For a speedier tan, you might elect to try a tanning accelerator. Generally sold as lotions or pills, these products list an amino acid called tyrosine in with the ingredients. This amino acid is reported (but not proven) by some users to increase the production of melanin, speeding up the tanning process. Again, these are not FDA-approved solutions or drugs.

Method 4 - Tanning Lamps

Tanning lamps, unfortunately, can have the same bad effects on the body as direct sunlight. The equipment emits UV rays that are just as damaging as the sun's. Some measures to take towards safety when using this type of equipment are closely monitor sessions, keeping to the minimum number and timed lengths that are recommended, don't book sessions closer than every-other day, ALWAYS wear recommended safety eyewear, follow safety and other directions that come with the equipment or are (or should be) posted near it, and do place some sort of protection like a thin piece of acrylic between your body and tanning lamps. (Check for this possibility with booths, too, by asking the host or reading the equipment's instruction booklet).

In conclusion, when looking for a tanning solution, check out the variety of products available. Sunless-tanning products offer safer tanning and many choices of forms and formulas for everyone across the board from young to old. And sunscreen products are definitely needed outdoors and also come in a variety of choices for everyone.

So be prepared. Be safe. And have fun in the sun!

Tony Newton publishes the popular health and wellness website - With lots of informative articles on low carb diets, hair loss, arthritis pain relief, obesity and lots more.


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