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3 Healthy Alternatives to Tanning Beds

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at BC chapter.

Spring is officially here, which means warmer weather is on the way! Warmer weather can also mean showing a little more skin—which can be a problem if you are feeling pale. Want to get rid of that winter white and embrace a summer glow? Here are three healthy options that can help you to get tan without having to travel or risk the use of tanning beds.

1. Use Neutrogena Body Oil (Light Sesame Formula) and Jergen’s Natural Glow (Firming and Daily Moisturizer, Medium to Tan Skin Tones)

These two products work best as a pair. Both can be found at your local pharmacy and they are both under $20. In order to get the maximum effect, I suggest applying the two products in the following manner:

In the shower, smooth the Neutrogena Body Oil over your entire body. Some people prefer to do this after their shower, however I prefer to rinse the oil off, giving my skin a soft hydration without leaving any sticky layers. Immediately after your shower, dry off and apply the Jergen’s Natural Glow Lotion over your entire body and wash your hands after. Let the lotion dry for a few minutes and then wipe your body down with a towel to prevent any unwanted staining of clothes (I have never had a problem with this, but this is an important step just in case).

Repeat this process every day and within three days you will notice a tan. I use this method regularly and have been able to keep up a healthy tan.

2. Use St. Tropez self-tanning lotions

St. Tropez has an extensive line of self-tanning lotions, sprays, and mousses that focus on nurturing your skin while bringing out a natural sun-kissed glow. Many people with very fair skin have recommended this product; it’s definitely one to try! Prices vary depending on the size and type of product you buy in this line, but most average around $30-$40 and can be found at Sephora.

3. Use “Tan Towels”

Using a tan towel is the fastest way to get a natural tan. However, the application of this product is crucial. In order to get an even looking tan, you need to first put on latex or non-latex gloves. Take the towel and evenly rub over your entire body. Make sure that you use the towel sparingly on your ankles, knees, and elbows otherwise you will get streaks and stains. I do not recommend this product on your face, but if you are feeling bold you can try it out! After applying the towel, take the gloves off and rub your hands with the towel. The towel can only be used once, so discard after use. Wait a few minutes and then apply lotion to lock in the tan. You will notice results within hours. This tan will only last until your next shower and can very easily stain, so use caution wearing white clothes. You can find Tan Towel products at the front of any Mini Luxe store for under $15.

These are three healthy tanning methods that all have been proven to work quickly and give you a healthy looking tan. Say goodbye to orange spray tans and dangerous tanning beds, and hello to a healthy and tan you!


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Meghan Gibbons is a double major in Communications and Political Science in her senior year at Boston College. Although originally from New Jersey, she is a huge fan of all Boston sports! Along with her at Boston College is her identical twin, who she always enjoys playing twin pranks with. Meghan is a huge foodie, book worm and beach bum