Is spray tanning safe for skin?

Dr. Darria Long Gillespie, MD
Emergency Medicine
For one thing, tanning sprays are far better than a “real” tan. Sun tanning or using a tanning bed immensely multiples your risk of skin cancer, even at a young age!
The FDA has approved tanning sprays for application to the skin, but not around the eyes, mouth or nose, so avoid these areas.
There’s no concrete evidence that spray tanners are harmful to put on your skin, but some studies have shown that applying high concentrations of the chemical in the sprays could cause the production of free radicals, which can damage cells. Concentrations are lower in products than what was used in research, but it is important to be aware. 
The bigger danger may be inhalation. Some research has shown that inhalation would not just cause irritation of the lungs, but could cause the chemicals to get into your bloodstream, which could potentially promote cancers. 
If you go out in the sun, don’t forget about sunscreen, which most sunless tanners don’t have in them. You don’t want to burn!
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)

Spray tanning products containing DHA are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Use a sunscreen and wear protective clothing to safeguard your skin from the sun's harmful rays.

Continue Learning about Skin & Makeup/Cosmetics Use

Worst Case Scenario: Sleeping With Makeup On
Worst Case Scenario: Sleeping With Makeup On
At the end of a long day, it’s all too easy to skip a step in your nighttime routine and go to sleep without washing your face. But you may be doing m...
Read More
How are cosmetic components listed on a cosmetic's label?
Dr. Ellen Marmur, MDDr. Ellen Marmur, MD
As far as the cosmetic components go, they must be listed in descending order by quantity. So if wat...
More Answers
How long do cosmetics last?
Riverside Women's HealthRiverside Women's Health
You may not be able to use eye make-up, such as mascara, eyeliner, and eye shadow for as long as oth...
More Answers
Are Oxygen Skin Care Products As Effective As Oxygen Facials?
Are Oxygen Skin Care Products As Effective As Oxygen Facials?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.