Can I Use Sunless Tanning Products if I Have Acne?

Can I Use Sunless Tanning Products if I Have Acne?

As the summer approaches, so does the temptation to look "sun kissed." While we don't recommend that you put extra product on your skin, we also understand that you will! You need to be aware of how the use of sunless tanning products may present a risk of irritating your skin and amplifying the existing skin problems, so here are our tips to stay safe and reduce the risk of flareup's.

8 Rules of Sunless Tanning For Acne Prone Skin

  1. Choose products that are light, without a heavy oil base. Heavy oil will clog your pores.
  2. Choose products that contain SPF of at least 15 so you don't have to apply a second layer of sun protection on top of the sunless tanning product.
  3. Select products with moisturizers if your skin is dry or sensitive. Those with oily skin may find that gel based products work better for them.
  4. Choose a tanner that contains vitamins, herbal extracts and antioxidants when possible.
  5. Exfoliate your skin before you apply the self-tanning product. However, if your skin is heavily irritated, or your acne is severe, you may do better without exfoliation, and therefore consider using a bronzer (temporary darker or "gold" hue make-up or powder) instead of a self-tanner.
  6. Applying the self-tanning product without exfoliation and on uneven skin may cause streaks and darker spots that are difficult to remove for weeks. Bronzer on the other hand may be blended in and adjusted as needed. Remember to remove it at night with a gentle cleanser.
  7. Choose a self-tanning product that is the lightest to match your skin color. Darker colors amplify the look of marks and scars.
  8. When opting for a bronzer instead of a self tanner, dab concealer in your original skin color, or one shade lighter, on your acne, pimples, scars etc. Blend a bronzer with your usual foundation and distribute evenly, and in sheer layers with your fingertips. Or, if you want an even more shear look, apply with a lightly damp cosmetic sponge. Avoid dark shades and heavy layers of bronzers and make-up.


Tanning pills: These pills are commercially banned in the US, yet some people get their hands on them. DO NOT USE THEM! They contain the carotene chemical canthaxanthin, and have been associated with hepatitis and urticaria, a condition that involves relentless itching and skin eruptions.

Tanning beds: There is plenty of proof that tanning beds are dangerous to you and your skin. Tanning beds pose the same dangers as the sun. They omit ultraviolet (UV) radiation, which causes skin cancer. Don't believe anyone who tells you that because tanning booths omit only UVA rays, they're not hazardous to your health. One study suggests that visiting a tanning booth ten times in a year can double your chances of developing melanoma - one of the most deadly types of cancer. And for those that are or are planning to become pregnant, melanoma is the only type of cancer that spreads to the placenta, which could be disastrous for both you and your baby.



For further questions, please feel free to contact us directly.  Stay safe friends!


Best regards,

Dr. Agnes

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