“This is where popular culture is clashing with medical advice,” said Dr. Barney Kenet, a New York-based dermatologist. “It’s really obvious that sunburn does two things to you: it gives you lines and freckles and wrinkles and it also causes skin cancer especially melanoma.”
Kenet said that if people were really aiming to have a good clean example of sunburn “art” they may be inclined to stay out in the sun longer.
“Then there’s the motivation for getting a good burn,” he explained. “The practice is tempting them to burn even worse.”
Kenet said worryingly those who try to get a good “sunburn art” could be even more at risk for melanoma than those who are exposed to lower levels of sunlight overtime, such as someone who works in the sun.
Kenet explained that a deep burn for someone who is fair-skinned means that person will be at a higher likelihood of getting melanoma even though there may be less overall visible skin damage such as sunspots or wrinkles.