5 Healthy ways to get a sexy sun-kissed glow

I was blessed with a naturally tan, caramel-ish complexion (thanks mom and dad!) but after a long and brutal winter I'm really craving a healthy bronzed glow. You know, that gorgeous golden color most of us Latinas get after spending just a little too much time out in the sun. The problem is, we all already know that the sun is the worst thing you can ever expose your skin to. Forget wrinkles and age spots--it can cause skin cancer, for crying out loud! But now I'm finding myself in an even bigger dilemma after discovering that self-tanners are bad for you too. I don't mean the tanning booths I mean the at-home formulas. Dammit!

Read more ¿Qué más? 6 Common sunscreen myths you NEED to know about 

Apparently it's the dihydroxyacetone (or DHA) found in most self-tanners that's problematic. Fox News claims that DHA is a color additive that binds to the proteins in the top layers of your skin. This is how it darkens your skin. There's no real evidence proving that this is actually harmful, but some are claiming that it can cause genetic alternations and even DNA damage. That sounds serious!

"Studies show that if you apply very high concentrations of DHA to the skin, it can result in free radical formation--free radicals are highly reactive oxygen species that are capable of damaging structures within the cell, including DNA," Dr. Whiteny Bowe, a dermatologist at the SUNY Downstate College of Medicine in Brooklyn told FoxNews.com. "Now, while that sounds scary, the actual levels of DHA in over-the-counter self-tanning products are very low, so the products are really considered safe, non-toxic, and not carcinogenic."

So now what? Bowe says to stay on the safe side by avoiding self-tanning sprays specifically. The ones applied at "tanning" booths in salons and the ones you can use at home too. Luckily, there are a ton of other self-tanning products out there that seem relatively safe. Check them out and get that gorgeous sun-kissed look without the harm!

Image via Thinkstock

Add Comment How do you get glowy & gorgeous during the summer?
About the author

Johanna is the beauty and fashion staff writer at MamásLatinas and obsessed with all things beauty and fashion. She is a proud Dominicana and was born and raised in Queens, NY.

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Filed Under: suncare, tanning, self-tanning
Add Comment How do you get glowy & gorgeous during the summer?

Pretty good tips

Personally, I will take my chances with actual sun. I do not apply sun screen, neither to myself or my children. Sunlight is what makes the vitamin D in our body and considering for the most part we are indoors all the time, when we are out, I want to enjoy the sun. Cancer is very much genetics and my family is from Puerto Rico and Nicaragua, both places with plenty of sun and no one in my family has ever been diagnosed with skin cancer or any other kind except things related to smoking or alcohol abuse. 


Great tips


I used that last year on my legs.  The rest of me got a little brown but becase I was in the pool all summer my legs didn't brown. 

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