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Skincare experts warn against viral tanning TikTok hack

The Independent logo The Independent 24/06/2022 Joanna Whitehead
Skin experts advise using a minimum of 30+ SPF protection while in the sun © Getty Images/iStockphoto Skin experts advise using a minimum of 30+ SPF protection while in the sun

Skincare experts have warned against a viral TikTok hack which promises to offer sun worshippers the tan of their dreams.

TikTok user Miriam Mrovili’s shared her advice for getting a “beaut tan”, which involves creating a concoction of water and moisturiser and then spraying it on the body.

The mixture is then applied to a person’s skin before and during sunbathing.

The clip has since been viewed 5.5 million times with many users keen to try the tanning technique for themselves.

Other users have expressed concern that Mrovili risks damaging her skin, however, prompting her to upload a second video which states: “Remember SPF, especially on the first day. You need to get your skin used to the sun.”

Other users have shared their own “tips” for tanning, including baby oil, vaseline and even beer.

However, skincare experts at JustMyLook have warned against the approach.

“We strongly advise against undertaking this hack,” they told The Mirror.

“Not only is the process unsafe, but exposure to the sun in this way with no protection can severely increase the risk of sunburn which can lead to melanoma (skin cancer).

“We recommend wearing an SPF of 30 or more and applying it 15 minutes before exposing your skin to the sun.

“Apply the equivalent of a shot glass (two tbsp) of sunscreen to the exposed areas of the face and body to achieve the Sun Protection Factor (SPF) stated on the bottle of sun cream.

“This way you can still reap the benefits of the sun while minimising the risk,” they add.

The British Skin Foundation recommends using a minimum of SPF 30 or more, adding that no sunscreen provides absolute protection and should be used in conjunction with time in the shade, covering up and a hat.

They advise using a waterproof sunscreen, even if you are not swimming, as it protects you better if you sweat in the heat.

Apply the sunscreen 20-30 minutes before going outside, and at least every two hours. “If you swim or sweat a lot, use it more often,” they state. “Remember using a towel or lying back on a fabric sunbed can rub the sunscreen off.”

They also advise sunbathers to check the expiry date of your sunscreen, as out of date products offer less protection.

Skin cancer cases have reached a record high in England, with around one in five people affected during their lifetime, recent data suggests.

According to figures analysed by NHS Digital and the British Association of Dermatologists, the number of skin cancers recorded has risen by 26 per cent between 2013 and 2019.

Experts believe an ageing population and improvements to how cancers are reported are behind the rise.

Increased exposure to the sun and people going on foreign holidays may also be to blame.

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