Self-tanning is burned into the minds of CHS students

By Jenna Greenzaid, Editor-in-Chief

The film “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” not only delves into the story of a boy who won a golden ticket, but uses the characters of Oompa Loompas to help tell the tale. While also being quite musical, they manage to showcase a nice orange complexion, sometimes similar (though more extreme) to those who use self-tan.

The popular trend of self-tanning has long been around, but roaming the halls of CHS, it’s obvious self-tanning has taken its hold on the school. The idea of self-tanning is meant to be an alternative to harsh, UV rays from tanning in the sun, though other alternatives to sun tanning have proven to have different effects.

“Orange—it’s not a natural color,” AP Human Geography teacher Adam Field said.

Often, the tint of self-tanning products can fall on the more “orange” side rather than the apparent “sun-kissed” glow that individuals were originally hoping for.

According to a May Glamour article, the orange tone can sometimes be canceled out by formulas with a green or purple tint.

Other ways to get a tan without sitting out in the sun include going to a tanning salon for a spray tan or to use a tanning bed, though tanning beds involve direct UV radiation, which can cause cumulative and premature skin damage.

“I think self-tanning is healthier than tanning beds,” AP Psychology teacher Katelyn Blanken said. “It’s a safer option. However, I still think it should be done in a safe manner, so there are different types that have chemicals that should not be going on your skin. When you do it, go for a natural shade.”

Even though tanning beds can cause future skin damage, some doctors sometimes prescribe tanning (at tanning salons) to patients.

According to a June 2011 NBC News article, forty percent of indoor tanners have done it for non-cosmetic reasons, such as doctors prescribing tanning for depression, vitamin D deficiency and even skin disorders.

With such news about tanning beds having been brought into the light in recent years, self-tanning has begun to rise.

According to a Nov. 2017 Business of Fashion article, the self-tanning market in the U.S. has grown by 26.6 percent (from $135.1 million to $171 million) between 2011 and 2016 due to a rise in consumer demand.

At CHS, a number of girls have begun to self-tan throughout the school year.

“I like to be tan because it makes me feel like it’s summer, which is my favorite season,” junior Kellie Cohen said.

Despite its popularity amongst girls, similar to other trends, self-tanning may just be a fad that found its way to CHS.

“As with any sort of fad, once some students do it, other students just want to conform,” Blanken said. “I don’t necessarily think it’s about looking tanner, I think it’s just here’s what everyone’s doing, let me just jump on the bandwagon.”

Sooner or later, students will be moving on to a new trend and forgetting all about self-tanning.

“There’s always trends and fads but I don’t remember tanning being a thing,” Blanken said. “[In high school], everyone wore glitter eye makeup.”