February 15, 2012 § Leave a comment
“Who’s the fairest of them all?” This is a phrase that young girls have heard while growing up for decades, from the popular Snow White. Yet in today’s society, many teenage girls and women are trying to darken their skin. People spend large amounts of money on tanning every year. Yes, some may do a few sessions before a vacation to prevent burning. But many girls have made tanning a part of their regular schedule. There have even been many cases of addiction to tanning.
I think it is quite interesting that the white society tries to darken their skin, while other races and skin tones try to lighten it. There is this whole skin color caste system that is complete opposite for different ethnicity. Today in class, we discussed how tanning can go a lot deeper than trying to make your skin darker. I personally tan because I feel more attractive with a tan. I am definitely not addicted and go occasionally when I can fit it into my busy schedule. But who told me or put this idea into my head, that I look better with a tan? Do I really think I look better? Do I think I look better because subconsciously I see people who tan tend to have more money? I have never thought of this. It really makes me rethink and somewhat saddens me as to why I truly go tanning. As far back as I can remember, it would be me and mom outside laying out together. It was our thing. Even to this day, I get into “competitions” with her during the summer over our tans. So why was this such a big deal to us? If I dig deeper, growing up I was somewhat oblivious to it; but we are more so in the lower-middle class. Many of my childhood friends’ families definitely had more money than we did. Was this a way that we subconsciously fit in?
My boyfriend and I have known each other all throughout high school. He recently has definitely been feeling the whole “oh man, I’m getting old” feelings. He is constantly saying, “I need to start tanning.” “Man, I’m going to start tanning today.” Tanning definitely isn’t just with women. As a guy, he too feels more attractive with a tan. I wonder what his deeper inner meaning of tanning is and what he truly gets out of it. This whole idea really makes me think about my own personal reasonings for tanning.