Why do we want a tan?

A hundred years ago the idea that a tan could be desirable would have seemed absurd. In countries where most people were fair-skinned, tans were associated with people who worked outdoors and were a badge of low social status. Times have certainly changed as we struggle to beat our sun tan addiction. But what changed? Here is a concise history of the sun tan.

 

COCO CHANEL

Coco Chanel and the tan

Attitudes started to change in the 1920s when Coco Chanel introduced the tan as a fashion accessory. At the same time artificial sun rays began to be used to treat some skin diseases. So being brown came to mean being healthy. 

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