Society has such a jaded representation of what beauty is. Everywhere you look there are tanned individuals being presented as symbols of beauty and elegance. Society can be blamed for the rising number of cases of Melanoma. Melanoma is the fastest growing cancer in the US. Cases of melanoma have tripled in the last decade. It is growing at a rapid and alarming rate; most of the individuals with this disease are between 20 and 25. More individuals die each year from Melanoma than from breast cancer. That fact is scary. Consider how much attention breast cancer receives, and how little Melanoma receives.
The sun is not friendly to the skin. But, media portrays the sun as having a best-friend relationship with the human body, hence many celebrities are overly tanned. Attention needs to be brought to the truth that being tanned is not cool, and that a tan can, in fact, kill you.
I was diagnosed with Melanoma when I was twenty-two. I wish there had been more resources, and more attention brought to how devastating Melanoma is. I am now twenty-seven and melanoma is a constant battle in my life, and will remain so for the rest of my life. Thanks tanning beds, you sure did give me the gift of a lifetime.
I was just starting my life; it shouldn’t have felt like it was ending. I remember I had spent five-years growing out my hair after a terrible cut. My hair was finally perfect, long and blonde and beautiful. When my hair began to fall out it felt like the pieces of my life were falling apart. I remember thinking, wow…. was this really worth it? I could go into details of being sick, having constant nausea, weakness, aches and pains…but c’mon, I know the superficial draws society in the most.
I wish I could go back in time and slap my teenage self. I was your typical girl throughout my teenage years, I battled with self esteem issues like every teenager on the planet does, and I assumed that if I hid my true skin color, I could mask myself and be accepted. I tanned and thought nothing of it. I thought it would make me seem prettier on the outside to fill emptiness on the inside.
Looking back, I realize how stupid this really is.
Think about it, you get into a coffin-like bed that bakes your skin. The tan you achieve from a tanning bed makes you appear oompa-loompa orange, with yucky leathery skin. How is that attractive? Entering a tanning bed puts you at a 70% greater risk of melanoma, and for what, really? To look fake? We all stress how much we hate fake people, so why would you want your body’s largest organ to be falsified—altered from its natural beauty to a artificial orange?
I can’t even convey into words how atrocious tanning is. Well, really just think about it…you apply some “special lotion” on your skin and bake yourself. You have to wear protective eyewear in a tanning bed. Ummm, shouldn’t that deter you right there? If your eyes could be damaged so easily, what the heck are you doing to your skin?
It’s sad really. Individuals are killing themselves at their own hand. And for what purpose, to “look better?” It doesn’t really make sense does it? Become something you’re not to feel good about yourself. Why not embrace what you have? Be happy for the gift of life. Everyone is beautiful in his or her own way. Every single person on this planet. If someone begs to differ, they are the obvious exception: judgment looks ugly on anyone.
Look at female icons that have passed from generation to generation: Marilyn Monroe—sure she fits the blonde stereotype, but look at her amazing porcelain skin.She definitely never would of stepped foot into a tanning bed because she knew her natural essence was where her beauty came from.
Recording artist, model, fashion designer, and fragrance designer–Gwen Stefani.
Completely badass and pale.
These women are iconic and will stand the test of time because they found fame and stardom from embracing their individuality; never pretending to be something their not.
On the flipside, the only celebrities that endorse tanning would be the classy cast of Jersey Shore. It’s simple really: who would you rather be compared to, Marilyn Monroe or Snooki? One is iconic for her beauty; her pride in herself and being an individual. The other is so clearly unhappy she uses outrageous behavior and masks her true self as a crutch to boost her self-esteem.
The choice is simple. Marilyn. No question about it.
Why harm yourself to be something you’re not? Sure, it is the age-old issue—you have curly hair you want straight; you have light skin you want dark.
Life’s too short to be anything but happy with what you have, and who you are. Why waste your life hiding it, embrace it and rock your individuality. It’s what makes you beautiful.
Your skin is your body’s largest organ, so why not do everything in your power to take care of it? Apply SPF when exposed to the sun, take extra precautions not to risk too much exposure. Really, is it that hard? When you’re ninety–years-old your skin will thank you. So, will your grandchildren—because of your concern and caution you will have lived a rich, full life. Take heed to all of the warnings associated with indoor tanning, listening has the potential to save your life. Perhaps the international community will follow the footsteps of other provinces and states and implement the “tan-ban” for individuals under the age of eighteen.
Pale skin is beautiful. Some cultures, it is a symbol of status. If you have rich porcelain skin you are among the elite. There are even individuals who bleach their skin to make it appear whiter.
So, if you’re pale, who cares? What’s so horrible about looking like a doll? Isn’t doll face one of the sweetest compliments a person can receive? Paleness is rich. It’s so bold, and radiant. It is a sign of being proud of who you are.
Embrace it. It has the power to save your life.With the summer holidays fast approaching, the focus on superficial appearances is higher than ever. Everyone feels they must be unnaturally tanned in order to look their best for holiday events. During the holidays we surround ourselves with loved ones. Individuals who accept us and love us for who we are. There is no point of risking your health, and your life for a tan in hopes it will impress people. Stay natural, and true to yourself. That is the version of you that is loved. You will be healthy and alive to enjoy the holidays, your family will not worry about the constant threat of melanoma in your life. To be healthy is the greatest gift of all.