It's not controversial to say that tanning is, well, a controversial subject. Some people swear by it as a regular part of their beauty regimen, though it's suspected to have seriously harmful side effects. Whether you tan or not, though, the product women are using to self-tan right now is bound to surprise you.
It's hard to put this delicately, so here it is straight-up: People are using Coca-Cola to tan. Yup. Good, old-fashioned Coke. According to MTV UK, British reality TV stars Charlotte Crosby and Chloe Ferry, of Geordie Shore, were spotted "slathering" themselves in Coke while tanning in Ibiza.
While this beauty..."hack"(?) seems fittingly over-the-top for reality TV, it's probably not the best thing for real life. As MTV UK pointed out, Coke obviously isn't going to protect you from the sun, and it's likely to attract every piece of sand and mosquito around you, turning a day or night on the beach from fun to total abject misery.
What may be even more surprising than the trend's existence, though, is that this is not a new idea. Dr. Mona Gohara, a dermatologist, wrote a piece for Fitness Magazine, and said the practice of using Coke to tan has been around for a while.
It seems to stem from "the assumption that the combination of soda and oil accelerates your tan," Gohara explained. "But there really are not any scientific facts that back up such a claim."
Apparently Coke can "bring out that sun-kissed glow" because it is "brown like good old iodine," Gohara said. "And yes, its acidic nature may make getting a tan easier. But as a dermatologist, I can really only say one thing: BAG IT. Besides the fact that it is gross and sticky (do you want flies with that burn?), it's also a one-way ticket to developing cancer and wrinkles."
While tanning in general may be dangerous, there is certainly a hierarchy of "safe," and Coke, at least according to Gohara, is not on that list. There are, however, plenty of other self-tanning products if you really want to tan, including a brand-new tanning sheet mask.
No matter what your opinion of tanning is, or what method you may use to get that bronzed look, it's probably not a stretch to assume that Coke shouldn't be on your supply list this — or any — summer.