The “nasal tanning spray” search tag on TikTok features videos amassing nearly 100 million views. Popular TikToker Hannah Hill said she would not stop using nasal tanning sprays despite the risks because she would rather “live hot than die ugly” in a now-deleted video that was liked over 130,000 times, according to the New York Post.
Melanotan II is a synthetic peptide, or a group of amino acids, that can stimulate melanin production, dermatologist Dr. Heather Rogers told Insider.
Melanin is a natural pigment in the human body that gives skin, hair, and eyes their color, and protects against ultraviolet rays that cause skin aging and cancer. Rogers said melanotan II mimics a naturally occurring peptide called melanocyte-stimulating hormone that induces skin cells to produce melanin.
Since there are no approved medicines, pills, or procedures that increase melanin production, many people tan in the sun or in indoor tanning beds to stimulate cells to produce more pigment. These methods do not safely boost melanin and increase skin cancer risk, Yale Medicine dermatologist Christine Ko previously told Insider.
Though melanotan II has a myriad of side effects, a similar peptide called melanotan I can be safely inserted by dermatologists under the skin to treat people with intense sun sensitivity, according to Rogers.
The US Food and Drug Administration has not approved melanotan II for use, an FDA spokesperson said in an email to Insider.
Story continues at: Tan Safety