Tanning beds may be a popular remedy for psoriasis, but doctors warn they're more likely to cause cancer than cure the skin condition
Kim Kardashian is defending her use of tanning beds after she came under fire for having one in her office.
Kardashian, 43, showed her in-office tanning bed in a TikTok video tour of her SKKN BY KIM offices, where she cheekily offered her take on the “of course” video trend. Kardashian shared her wall of magazine covers, showed a close-up of the rear of a custom mannequin made with her dimensions, and a 3D model of her brain on her desk.
And while reclining in a tanning bed, she said, “I’m Kim Kardashian, of course I have a tanning bed — and a red light bed — in my office.”
“Please, Kim Kardashian, don’t try to normalize tanning beds,” Allure magazine pleaded with the reality star on X, the platform previously known as Twitter. “The stats about tanning and cancer are terrifying.”
On Friday Kardashian shared Allure's Tweet and reponded by by defending her tanning bed use, writing, “I have psoriasis and it really helps when it’s bad. But I don’t use it too often.”
Tanning beds are popular remedies for psoriasis, as the National Institute of Health has confirmed.
That’s because light therapy, like the non-tanning-bed type Kardashian has used, and exposure to sunlight can help psoriasis. But as Verywell Heath points out, “one psoriasis treatment is phototherapy with ultraviolet B (UVB) light. UVB light is present in natural sunlight and in tanning beds. However, tanning beds mostly emit ultraviolet A (UVA) light.”
And while the UVB light from a tanning bed might offer some relief from psoriasis, the UVA light is doing significant harm.
The UVA light from a tanning bed can be up to three times more powerful than the sun, Verywell Health says, and increases your cancer risk: Benign moles may become cancerous, and you are 65% more likely to develop squamous cell carcinoma — a type of skin cancer that the Mayo Clinic says is usually caused by UV radiation from the sun or tanning beds.
In fact, tanning beds were officially classified as a carcinogen by the World Health Organization in 2009, the National Institute of Health says.
As the Skin Cancer Foundation bluntly says, “Just one visit to the tanning salon significantly increases your chances of a cancer that can kill you.”
Kardashian’s struggle with psoriasis is well-documented; she first shared her diagnosis on a 2011 episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashians.
The Mayo Clinic notes that there is “no cure” for the chronic skin condition, which causes itchy, scaly patches on the skin that “can be painful, interfere with sleep and make it hard to concentrate.” However, there are treatments and lifestyle changes that can help.
Kardashian has shared the herbal remedies she’s tried to combat psoriasis flare-ups — and in the past has praised light therapy for helping her skin condition improve.
She’s also called out outlets when they claim she’s having a “bad skin day,” correcting them that she isn’t suffering from acne, but from “psoriasis all over my face.
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