A Letter To My Sun (and a giveaway!)

Dearest Sun,

You’ve always been my bright star, the center of my own personal solar system, the source of my energy.

When you’re not out, I feel SAD. The dark days make me lonely for you.

But, as I became an adult, it was time to stop worshipping you – at least for extended periods of time. I’m “allowed” to worship you for about 10 minutes, to get my all-important dose of Vitamin D (to help my bones absorb calcium and other health reasons), but then I have to run for cover.

I never wanted to associate you with those words of caution; words like “lines,” “wrinkles,” “sun spots,” “skin cancer,” and more. But with age, they’ve all become realistic fears. Those days when I used to lay outside, 3 hours on one side before flipping over to the other side (to ensure an even burn…I never tanned, anyway)? They are officially over.

For all you former sun worshippers out there there… yeah, you, who used to sit outside for hours slathering yourself with a mixture of baby oil and iodine. Or me, who used to hold that obnoxiously shiny sun reflector up to my face to force those potent ultraviolet rays to burn me (as if they wouldn’t anyway). Scary.

Tan that bod.

Tan that bod.

I’m so happy to be able to share Jane Iredale’s Tantasia Self Tanner & Bronzer with one of my readers. Now that we’re coming out of a long, dark winter – finally!!- it’s tempting to look like we’ve been kissed by the sun (even if we haven’t). You can use this fabulous product on your face and/or body and in return, get instant, healthy-looking color, building to a natural-looking tan within three days.

What did you used to do before you knew or believed that the sun could burn you? Leave me a comment, and I’ll chose a winner at random to receive some safe tanning!

This contest is open to residents of the US only and closes at 5PM ET, April 25. If your name is chosen, I’ll notify you by email; if you fail to respond within 48 hours of being notified, you’ll make another entrant very happy because I’ll be forced to choose another name.

Thank you, Jane Iredale, for graciously providing me with my own Tantasia to try!

PS. Here are some very important – albeit frightening – general facts about skin cancer from the Skin Cancer Foundation:

Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. More than 3.5 million skin cancers in over two million people are diagnosed annually.

Each year there are more new cases of skin cancer than the combined incidence of cancers of the breast, prostate, lung and colon.

Treatment of nonmelanoma skin cancers increased by nearly 77 percent between 1992 and 2006.

Over the past three decades, more people have had skin cancer than all other cancers combined.

One in five Americans will develop skin cancer in the course of a lifetime.

13 million white non-Hispanics living in the US at the beginning of 2007 had at least one nonmelanoma skin cancer, typically diagnosed as basal cell carcinoma (BCC) or squamous cell carcinoma (SCC).

Basal cell carcinoma is the most common form of skin cancer; an estimated 2.8 million are diagnosed annually in the US. BCCs are rarely fatal, but can be highly disfiguring if allowed to grow.

Squamous cell carcinoma is the second most common form of skin cancer. An estimated 700,000 cases of SCC are diagnosed each year in the US.6,

The incidence of squamous cell carcinoma has been rising, with increases up to 200 percent over the past three decades in the US.

About 2 percent of squamous cell carcinoma patients – between 3,900 and 8,800 people – died from the disease in the US in 2012.

Between 40 and 50 percent of Americans who live to age 65 will have either BCC or SCC at least once.

Actinic keratosis is the most common precancer; it affects more than 58 million Americans.

Approximately 65 percent of all squamous cell carcinomas and 36 percent of all basal cell carcinomas arise in lesions that previously were diagnosed as actinic keratoses.

About 90 percent of nonmelanoma skin cancers are associated with exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun.

Half of all adults report at least one sunburn in the past 12 months.









  1. My father has had skin cancer surgeries. I get checked for skin issues often (as do many other members of my family). I have always used a sun screen .

  2. I try too stay out of the sun because I’ve had a couple bad sunburns in my life. My legs in particular as so pale though, I’d love to make them a little less blinding!

    • Thanks for writing, Mahdi, and glad to hear you are careful with the sun! Like you, I suffer from blinding-white legs, too, and that’s where self-tanner comes in so handy.

  3. I’m super careful in the sun, but that won’t make up for all the damage I did as a teenager. Thanks for the reminder. I need to get my hubby in for a checkup!
    Carpool Goddess recently posted..Books I’m Loving Right NowMy Profile

  4. Skin cancer scares the heck out of me! So I thank you for posting this informative post, and offering what sounds like a wonderful bronzer!
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  5. Helene Cohen Bludman says:

    I was shocked into reality when I got a basal cell carcinoma at the age of 32. Since then I have been careful about protecting my skin in the sun. I love the look of a healthy tan — I guess that’s an oxymoron!

  6. Perfect timing for this reminder!
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  7. Rosalba Gordon says:

    I used to be in the sun whithout protection and got brown spots all over my face. Now I’m very careful and wear sun screen all the time. Thanks for the reminder, just in time!

  8. Sunscreen every single day is my rule.
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  9. We have a family history of skin cancer so I’m pretty careful to put on sunscreen every day. Plus, no matter how much time I spend in the sun I go from pale to pink–there’s no tan in between without a little help from a bottle. I find the self-tanning cream often has an off-odor–what about this kind?

    • I’m the same way as you; never tan, always burning no matter what. This product happens to have a rather pleasant, if subtle scent, I’m happy to say!

  10. Mary-Ellen says:

    Growing up in a beach town, we learned from our mother’s. I can not count the amount of times I received a sunburn. Unfortunately today, our faces reflect our youth. Spending my adult life in Florida, I raised my children protected from the sun while enjoying the sunshine! I enjoy the beach every Sunday with sunscreen, my large SPF hat (which I wear while I swim), my rash guard shirt and a SPF umbrella.
    Thank you for talking about this important subject!

    • You’re so lucky to have grown up in a beach town, Mary-Ellen:)

      Sounds like you take all the very necessary precautions today – better late than never, right?

  11. Nice. I think there is a balance when it comes to health risks (which are real) from the sun. Yes, we must protect ourselves from too much of the harmful rays, but the vitamin D we get from the sun is soooooo essential. So many of us, including me, are dealing with vitamin d deficiencies and are needing supplements or prescription strength doses to replenish. I am taking prescription strength and supplements and trying to spend a little time in the sun to get a good dose the natural way.
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  12. I too am paying for all my youthful days in the sun before there was SPF. My late mom had melanoma and lost part of her leg to cancer. I’m more mindful as I age and get checked twice a year and try to use an umbrella and lots of sunscreen at the beach.
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