Spring Break and Prom Season mean that many teens in the tri-state are heading for the tanning salons to “get their glow on”. But if you are a parent who is considering giving in to the requests from your teen to tan, you may want to consider the latest trends and warnings before saying “yes”.
As of April 8, children under 18 years of age were officially banned from using ultraviolet (UV) tanning devices in Great Britain. And, tanning salon staffers, who allow minors to tan, could be liable for fines which in the US would be the equivalent of about $33,000.
While this may seem like a drastic measure, there are those who want to see the same type of restrictions here in the US. In recent statements The American Academy of Pediatrics recently called for all US tanning salons to bar minors. With this new policy statement, the AAP joins The American Medical Association, The World Health Organization, The American Academy of Dermatology and The Skin Cancer Foundation in demanding a US ban on indoor ultraviolet (UV) tanning for young people.
It is, likewise, my hope that this comes to fruition. All of these respected agencies are using their collective medical muscle to drive home the point that: UV damage is cumulative and often irreversible, and the earlier people start to tan, the higher their risk of developing skin cancer in their lifetimes. In the meantime, I would simply encourage parents to consider this: that young people who start tanning indoors before the age of 35 increase their risk of developing melanoma (the deadliest form of skin cancer) by 75 percent.
Any annoying squawking about “pale clashing with the prom dress” can be easily remedied with a spray tan. This was exactly the point made by a recent feature in Seventeen magazine too; which hired my pal Jill Goldman and her company, South Florida Spray Tan, to give a “Faux Glow” to the cover girls for the piece.
The Skin Cancer Foundation has also launched a campaign called Go With Your Own Glow that is targeted at young women to encourage the avoidance of the tanning beds and sunbathing.
Get a clue girls (and guys)--skin cancer is preventable; and no amount of makeup will camouflage the chunks they will need to take out of your skin if you continue to tan. As an industry colleague of mine once pointed out: “Nobody would put their liver inside a tanning bed, but they still stick their largest organ in there!” So…don’t bake it…fake it!