Caution! Sunny Days Ahead

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Caution! Sunny Days Ahead

photo credit: newsbythesecond.com

photo credit: newsbythesecond.com

photo credit: newsbythesecond.com

Many Americans use tan beds as a part of their summer routines. However, many fail to realize the dangers associated wit this trend.

Cherima Chungag, Staff Reporter

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With warm days (and heat rays) fast approaching, tanning will most likely become a constant in the lives of many Mercy girls this season.

It goes without saying that tanning booths are unhealthy—but this is, sadly, as sterile as words come. Unhealthy, unhealthy, unhealthy. These words are ineffective. Skin cancer, melanoma, advanced aging, heard it all before. Unfortunately, many teens mistakenly believe that the skin– the largest bodily organ– is impermeable.

Unbeknownst to them, the pursuit of tanning is the pursuit of damning one’s skin. Orange is clearly not a natural skin tone. Once you’ve lain in a sun bed, you have removed yourself from ethnicity! Congratulations. You’ve beaten the race superiority complex. This may sound like a plus to some, but it isn’t.

And although tanning leaves the skin baby-smooth, there’s a catch. The smoothness only occurs because the skin has swollen in response to the ultraviolet siege upon the body. The creases have lifted from the skin, but only for a few days. Then it is time to return to the salon to iron the body once more, actively layering the wounds.

Maybe instead of destroying our skin this season, many of us will consider a few alternate means to achieving the so called “look” of summer.

1. Paint your nails a bright, funky color.

2. Accessorize!

3. Buy a cute summer dress. Who cares if it’s barely 45 degrees right now, wear it anyways (just don’t forgo the sweater).

4. Catch up on the dos and don’ts of fashion with Kathryn Costello and Erin Pienta.

5. Temporarily dye strands of your hair wild colors, like blue or green.

6. Remember that you are beautiful, gorgeous, fantastic, etc. Let that confidence shine through.

Tanning is absurd in every respect: a short-lived look that is also a waste. How much money do you burn? How many shades of foundation do you need to, between sessions, level in and out of every shade of carrot? Does foundation even exist to temper rampant teenage complexions that happen, also, to be orange?

Wikipedia opens its article on “tanning” as “the process of making leather from skin. This is commonly done with the acidic compound tannin, which prevents normal decomposition and often imparts color.” This is tanning as it pertains to cowboy boots. Not what I had in mind when I began my search, yet, it suffices. To tan is to treat the body as though it is already dead. Beauty is subjective, yes. But I am sick of this “Because it’s hot” nonsense. If false tans are so attractive, please, fill me in on why. Explain your terms—I’ve explained mine. And that’s a challenge.

FYI: a good bottle of NYC nail enamel goes for 99¢ at Rite-Aid.

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