Sunless tanning may not be the answer to preventing skin cancer
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MINNEAPOLIS, MN- July 25, 2018- Many advertisements, articles and reports make bold statements regarding sunless tanning products – sprays, ointments, creams, foams, or lotions that promise tan skin without the increased risk of skin cancer that goes along with outdoor sunbathing or indoor tanning. But, do people who use sunless tanning products actually avoid these “bad” behaviors? Few studies have investigated this topic and this led Matthew Mansh, MD, Resident in the Department of Dermatology, University of Minnesota Medical School and University of Minnesota Health, to question whether he should recommend sunless tanners to his patients.

In the study “Characteristics and Skin Cancer Risk Behaviors of Adult Sunless Tanners in the United States,” published in JAMA Dermatology, Mansh and fellow University of Minnesota Medical School researchers sought to assess the demographic characteristics and skin cancer risk behaviors of adult sunless tanners in the United States. They wanted to find out if adults who used sunless tanning products were able to reduce risky behaviors such as indoor and outdoor tanning. They found little evidence they did.

More than 27,000 adults were part of this study – about 6.4% reported sunless tanning. Sunless tanning was most common among young, white, college-educated

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