Those who spend hours in the sun perfecting their golden tans may snicker at orange-faced folks who opt for a tan in a can, but it could be the Oompa Loompas who are making the wiser choices. A study published in the Archives of Dermatology suggests that fake-tanners spend less time in the sun, leading to less exposure to cancer risk-increasing UV rays.
An Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta dermatologist who worked on the research tells Reuters that spray tans beat sunbathing when it comes to skin safety, saying “getting a tan out of a bottle is incredibly safe, whereas getting tanned from tanning beds and lying out is not.”
The researchers’ survey found that 40 percent of women who use spray tans said they had decreased their exposure to the sun and tanning beds. Spray-tanners, however, also leaned toward getting other types of tans.
If you must tan, spraying yourself orange may be the safest way to go. But as a dermatologist quoted in the story notes, those who avoid tanning altogether are the safest of all.