What is TikTok’s viral sunbathing hack and why do experts warn against it?

TikToker trying sunbathing hackTikTok: mimosaaaxo

TikTok users are being warned against trying a viral tanning ‘hack’ involving a mixture of moisturizer and water, with skincare experts calling it “unsafe.”

One of the best places to go to find a range of life hacks these days is short-form video platform TikTok. Creators are constantly uploading videos with tips that have made their lives easier, and many also go viral with videos of their attempts at some of these popular lifehacks.

The hacks can be related to anything from food & drink to skincare & beauty — but sometimes they aren’t quite as helpful as they first appear, and could even be dangerous.

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The latest hack that’s going viral on the platform claims to help users get a “beaut tan,” using a mixture of moisturizer and water. Users show themselves putting the two substances in a spray bottle, and then spraying it throughout the day while sunbathing in order to supposedly get a better tan.

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Is the sunbathing hack safe?

One video featuring the hack has been viewed over 5 million times, but while some were tempted to try the hack, others weren’t so sure. “Please don’t do this. Your skin is so precious,” one concerned user commented on the video.

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Skincare experts from JustMyLook have also warned users against attempting this tanning hack.

“We strongly advise against undertaking this hack,” they said. “Not only is the process unsafe, but exposure to the sun in this way with no protection can severely increase the risk of sunburn which can lead to melanoma (skin cancer). We recommend wearing an SPF of 30 or more and applying it 15 minutes before exposing your skin to the sun.

TikTok logo on a phone screenUnsplash: Mourizal Zativa
TikTok is home to millions of viral videos — including a huge number of lifehacks.

“Apply the equivalent of a shot glass (two tbsp) of sunscreen to the exposed areas of the face and body to achieve the Sun Protection Factor (SPF) stated on the bottle of sun cream. This way you can still reap the benefits of the sun while minimizing the risk.”

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This isn’t the first viral tanning hack on TikTok to catch the attention of experts, as some have also previously warned against trying the popular nasal spray tan trend.

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