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‘Beer Tanning’ Doctors Warn Against the Internet’s New Dangerous Trend

Source - @the_sfeir_family / TikTok

We all know that tanning isn’t the best thing for us, though it’s pretty hard to not want to soak in some rays on a warm, sunny day. Plus, we’ve all heard time and time again that we should be wearing sunscreen every day, no matter what we’re doing.

Becki Bell, a woman who was interviewed while visiting one of the lakefront parks in Cleveland this past week, noted that she and her family always put on sunscreen before they head out for the day, ensuring that they had plenty of coverage and that it has time to absorb on their skin.

“We love enjoying the warm weather at the park,” said Becki. “Of course, the last thing we want to do is damage our skin.”

Well Becki, we’re with you, though unfortunately, a bit of bad advice has been spreading like wildfire as of late, advice that might just make soaking in the sun a lot more dangerous for certain, should we say, naive people.

“Beer Tanning” is a trend that we’re starting to see a lot of on social media these days, in which a person is supposed to pour a bottle of beer on their skin and use it to magnify UV rays. The main problem is, of course, that these same people are not using any form of sunscreen or protection. Even tanning oil, which often comes with some sort of SPF protection, is the better option for you than this.

Dr Shilpi Khetarpal, a dermatologist from the Cleveland Clinic, said that she was in absolute shock and wondered why anyone would ever do this. “Why in the world would you want to put something so sticky and messy all over your body?” she asked. “Beyond that, these people are putting themselves outside without any sunscreen and exposing themselves to harmful ultraviolet rays.”


Shilpi also noted that pouring beer on your skin can suffocate it, leaving you at an increased risk for heat stroke or dehydration. According to the CDC, there is no more dangerous heat-related illness than heat stroke, and symptoms can range from confusion to seizures to unconsciousness. In the very worst cases, it can be fatal.

With everything said, it’s clear that beer tanning is not a good idea. Even more so, the FDA says that just about any form of UV tanning is dangerous, especially if you’re not wearing sun protection and spending a fair amount of time in direct sunlight. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to get that golden tan without all the health risks.

If you head to just about any large retail store, whether brick and mortar or online, you can find plenty of different self-tanning products, from sprays to serums to lotions to drops. Many of these are designed to provide tans that can last well over a week, all without the risk of harmful UV exposure.

Our advice? Save the beer for quenching your thirst rather than getting that summer bronze.


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