Are you pregnant and thinking of getting that fake bronze effect on your skin? Do you want to get a nice sun kissed tan but are not sure whether it is safe to go for it while expecting?
If you want to try out some fake tan options without causing any harm to your unborn baby, go ahead and give this post a read.
Is It Safe To Use Fake Tan When Pregnant?
Before you use fake tan during your pregnancy, it is important to check with your doctor first. Unless your doctor mentions otherwise, most fake tan creams and lotions can be safely used while you are pregnant. Your doctor will recommend that you do not use a spray tan as you may inhale its chemical. 
Fake tans contain Dihydroxyacetone (DHA) as their main ingredient. It is a non-toxic substance and reacts with the cells in your skin’s outermost layers. The result is melanoidin, a brown pigment or color, forms on your skin. Experts believe that DHA does not interfere with your skin’s layer and does not penetrate beyond t
As such there are no proven risks of using a fake tan when pregnant. However, the one risk that is there is that you could develop an allergic reaction to the tanning product you use. During pregnancy, your body goes through a lot of hormonal changes. As a result, your skin becomes more sensitive and may be prone to allergic reactions. To make sure, you do not develop an allergy, do a patch test before using it. Try the product on a small part of your skin and see whether there is any allergic reaction.
[ Read: Tanning Bed During Pregnancy ]
Can Sunless Tanning Be Dangerous?
The debate on whether fake tan during pregnancy or otherwise, is safe or not, is a topic you need to check with your doctor. There are various people who feel that fake tanning is perfectly safe. On the other hand, there are others who will tell you that it can be dangerous. 
Sunless tanners contain a huge amount of chemical agents. The FDA does not always review the safety of ingredients in personal care products. It means that most ingredients in a fake tanner go unchecked and may be unsafe.
While DHA in fake tans is safe (as mentioned above), the problem lies in contamination. Without specific safety guidelines, manufacturers often mix toxic chemicals like lead, arsenic or mercury along with DHA. Lead and mercury adversely affect your unborn baby’s brain development. Even though the extent of the damage is not certain, it is surely dangerous. As a safety rule, if you are not comfortable eating a particular ingredient while you are pregnant, do not apply it on your skin either.
DHA is thought to be a mutagen, which may cause a break in your DNA strands. There are no specific studies to confirm this yet, but studies do not completely negate the effects either. A break in the DNA strands can lead to skin cancer.
Fake Tans You Could Use While Pregnant:
There are mainly two types of fake tans. You can wash the cosmetic bronzers immediately while the sunless tanners stay on your skin for some days. 
Dermatologists recommend that you try using tanning products yourself rather than visit a tanning parlor while you are pregnant.
A few options you may try to get that fake tan when pregnant are:
1. Bronzing Powders:
You can use a bronzing powder safely as you can build upon it as you use.
Your skin will not absorb a bronzing powder.
You can easily wash it off like makeup once you are through for the time being.
Another good part about the bronzing powder is that you can use it anywhere you want, without any harm.
You can use it on your cheeks, your nose, forehead, chin, décolletage, arms and neck.
[ Read: Skin Darkening During Pregnancy ]
2. Bronzing Gels:
Bronzing gels may be a little harder to apply as compared to bronzing powders.
The final effect may not be even after application.
Another problem with the bronzing gels is that they can lead to an orangey effect, which is hard to match with most skin tones.
3. Stick Bronzers:
Stick bronzers are very much like the regular deodorant stick.
You can easily apply the stick bronzers wherever you wish to get the fake tan effect.
All you need to do is rub it lightly over the skin and build it up depending on how much tan effect you want.
You can also use a translucent powder along with the stick bronzer to make the tan last longer.
4. Sunless Tanning Lotions:
Sunless tanning lotions are easy to use.
You can apply them the way you apply a body lotion.
The tanning lotions will also dry faster and will not leave a sticky feeling on your skin.
5. Sunless Tanning Mousse:
A sunless tanning mousse will not contain as much moisture as a lotion or gel.
It can work great if you have oily skin.
In case you have dry skin and want to use it, apply a moisturizer first. However, it may affect the final tan effect.
[ Read: Is It Safe To Get Facials During Pregnancy ]
6. Sunless Tanning Gels:
A sunless tanning gel is very easy to use.
You can apply it the way you apply any gel product.
Apply a smaller amount first and build it up as you go.
Tanning while you are pregnant is not recommended by experts, especially as its effects on the unborn baby are still under the scanner.
Make sure you consult your doctor before trying out any fake tan products. If possible at all, delay the procedure till you are through with breastfeeding.
Did you try to get a fake tan while pregnant? What products did you use? Did you suffer from any side effects? Please share it with other moms here.
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