Welcome to your skin check-in with Life & Style’s resident health and beauty expert, Dr. Will Kirby, a celebrity dermatologist and Chief Medical Officer of LaserAway. Every week, he’ll be spilling his candid thoughts and professional advice on all things skin, beauty and wellness as it relates to you — and your favorite stars.

Tanning oils are widely popular because the nation is soaking up the rays at beaches, lakes and pools nationwide this summer! But are tanning oils safe to use? I reached out to the experts to learn more about them and to see if it is ever okay to apply them!

“While tanning oils can help your skin stay moisturized, flexible and pliable, they typically aren’t safe to use as they may increase sun damage,” notes plastic surgeon Dr. Gaurav Bharti. “Excess sun exposure leads to premature skin aging and may predispose you to developing skin cancer. I recommend that patients avoid using tanning oils and the excess UV exposure that accompanies them. Skip the tanning oil and consider using an at-home self-tanner cloth!”

“Tanning oils are used to speed up the process of tanning when out in the sun by attracting more sun rays and increasing the absorption of the rays,” explains dermatologist Dr. Melissa Kanchanapoomi Levin. “While some tanning oils may claim that they have SPF, using tanning oils will not provide proper sun protection and in fact may increase sun damage. I recommend ditching tanning oils and looking for a quality body bronzer instead!”

“Tanning oils ‘help’ your skin get a tan faster by attracting and focusing UV rays onto the skin and this unfortunately ultimately leads to more sun damage,” teaches dermatologist Dr. Deanne Mraz Robinson. “Since we know that there is no such thing as a ‘healthy tan,’ my strong advice is to avoid using tanning oils in the summer sun and get a spray tan before you hit the shore!”