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Tanning = White Trash?

By Randolph Johansen

After consulting a few beauty experts, it seems that the trend of tanning may be a thing of the past. Three critics had rather harsh words to say.

"There is a new truism in the beauty world and that is: tanning is trash." That's right, if you haven't heard, tanning, as in going to tanning beds, staying out in the sun too long, has become the sure-fire mark of white trash.

Beauty expert, Dawn McGuire says, "Having white skin was always considered the upper-class tend. This changed briefly when tanning became popular in the 1990s. But no longer. Tanning is again the mark of white trash."

"There is no easier way to tell that someone is white trash than by whether he or she has a tan," remarks Liz DuPree. "It's disgusting. You have blonde girls whose skin looks like a baseball mitt. Guys don't like it. It's simply gross."

And this is nothing new. Historian Mark Davis notes: "Fair skin always has indicated aristocracy. Having a tan indicates one is a lower-class laborer. And this timeless standard has returned."

Not only do tanning beds cause skin cancer, but they designate their users as lower-class. Tanning is out. Fair skin is in.

Randolph Johansen writes from North Carolina. He can be reached at:

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