It’s known that indoor tanning beds are linked to skin cancer, but new research published online October 6 suggests that regular indoor bronzing may be even more dangerous than previously thought.

New research published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology finds that the main type of ultraviolet rays used in tanning beds — UVA-1 — could penetrate to a deep layer of skin that is most vulnerable to the cancer-causing changes caused by ultraviolet rays.

The new study comes as the US Food and Drug Administration is considering banning the use of tanning beds among children under 18, as England and Wales have already done in response to rising rates of melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer. Past research has shown that indoor tanning increases the risk of the disease by 75 per cent.

In the study, 12 volunteers were exposed to UVA-1 and UVB rays. While both rays can cause skin lesions, noted the researchers, the UVA-1 rays caused them at deeper levels of the skin where they may cause changes linked to skin cancer.

If you like the bronze look, a healthier option is UV-less tanning, which new research reveals is growing in popularity among US girls ages 11 to 18.

If you want to find a healthy, environmentally friendly sunless tanner, look to the Environmental Working Goup’s (EWG) cosmetic safety database Skin Deep. Sunless tanners have been ranked based on health risks (cancer, allergies, immunotoxicity, developmental/reproductive toxicity, and other), including a risk assessment for each ingredient. –AFP RELAXNEWS