The Tanning Myth

Ok, readers. I figure we’ve gotten to be pals, more or less, you and I over the course of this blog. That’s why I feel completely comfortable telling you about my aunt. She’s nuts. Off her rocker… touched… a few French fries short of a happy meal… well you get the point.

Anyway, I bring this up only because I saw said crazy auntie at a family function this past weekend, and she was telling me about the fact that using a tanning bed (or laying out in the sun) was a surefire way to be rid of acne once and for all. Of course, this aunt also has skin that resembles a well worn piece of luggage, so I probably shouldn’t be too surprised that she’s spending a whole lot of time in the sun.

I tried explaining to her, in gentle tones and as few multi-syllabic words as possible, that getting a ton of unprotected sun exposure could not be good for the skin on any level. Of course, she wouldn’t listen to a word I had to say… I think she’s soaked up a few too many UV rays, if you catch my drift.

Anyway, just in case some of you are getting this same kind of kooky advice, here’s the official 411 on why tanning is NOT a cure for zits:

Sunbathing—both the old fashioned way and in a tanning bed—dries your skin, kicking your sebaceous glands into overdrive. This causes them to produce more of the oils that can lead to break outs. (It’s pretty simple logic to follow, but you try getting through to a stubborn mule of a woman that won’t admit she’s wrong) Plus there’s the fact that too much sun exposure causes your skin to try and get rid of dead cells faster than normal, which can lead to clogged pores and (say it with me) more break outs.

So there you have it… the truth behind the tanning myth. Be good to your skin—apply an oil free sunscreen of at least SPF 15 whenever you’ll be spending time outdoors.

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