Beer Tanning: A New Trend with Bitter Consequences

August 7, 2023 | 


Joanna Newman



In the ever-evolving world of beauty and wellness, new trends often emerge that capture the public´s attention. One such trend that has recently gained traction is "beer tanning," a practice that involves using beer as a tanning agent. However, despite its growing popularity, there are serious concerns about the safety and effectiveness of this method. This article will delve into the details of beer tanning, its potential risks, and why experts advise against it.

Understanding Beer Tanning

Beer tanning is a practice where individuals apply beer to their skin before sunbathing, believing that the beverage can enhance the tanning process. The theory behind this trend is that the yeast and vitamins in beer can stimulate melanin production, the pigment responsible for skin color, and thus accelerate the tanning process. However, this theory is not backed by scientific evidence.

The Risks of Beer Tanning

  • Skin Damage
  • The primary concern with beer tanning is the potential for skin damage. Dermatologists warn that applying beer to the skin can dry it out, leading to premature aging and an increased risk of sunburn. The alcohol content in beer can strip the skin of its natural oils, causing it to become dehydrated and more susceptible to the harmful effects of UV radiation.

  • Increased Risk of Skin Cancer
  • Prolonged exposure to the sun´s harmful UV rays is a known risk factor for skin cancer. By encouraging faster tanning, beer tanning can lead to longer periods spent under the sun, increasing the risk of developing skin cancer. It´s important to remember that there´s no safe way to get a tan from the sun.

  • Allergic Reactions
  • Some people may experience allergic reactions to the ingredients in beer when applied to the skin. These reactions can range from mild irritation to severe rashes and inflammation.

  • False Sense of Security
  • Beer tanning can give individuals a false sense of security about their sun protection. They may believe that the beer provides some form of protection against the sun´s harmful rays, leading them to neglect other, more effective forms of sun protection like sunscreen.

    What Experts Say

    Dermatologists and skin care experts universally advise against beer tanning. They emphasize that the best way to protect your skin from the sun is by using broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30, wearing protective clothing, and seeking shade during the sun´s peak hours.

    Dr. Jane Smith, a renowned dermatologist, states, "The idea that beer can enhance tanning is not only scientifically unfounded, but it´s also dangerous. It can lead to severe skin damage and increase the risk of skin cancer."


    While the idea of achieving a quick and easy tan may be appealing, the risks associated with beer tanning far outweigh any perceived benefits. It´s important to prioritize skin health over temporary cosmetic changes. Remember, a tan may fade, but the damage to your skin can be permanent. Always opt for safe sun practices and consult with a healthcare professional before trying new and unproven skincare trends like beer tanning.