This UK man wanted a shortcut to a golden tan — instead, he got skin damage.
Dylan Wright, 28, is now warning against the dangers of tanning injections he once used, which he claimed left him with the dry, sun-spotted skin of a 60-year-old.
The freckles, a permanent reminder of his tanning faux pas, even gave him a cancer scare.
“The doctors called me an idiot and told me it’s a side effect from the drug, but now I’m stuck with [freckles],” the Essex resident told South West News Service. “I’ve got freckles like I’m in my 50s or 60s. It feels like my skin’s aged.”
The self-tanning shots use a lab-made hormone called melanotan II to increase melanin production — but at the cost of moles and freckles.
Before a 2014 trip to Sitges, Spain, he purchased the injections for £10, or about $13, to amp up a soon-to-be beach glow.
Wright gave himself two injections before heading to the airport to get a head start on his desired bronzed look. However, at the end of the six-day vacation, his complexion was darker than he expected.
Looking back, he said he was probably supposed to only use one syringe but didn’t want to take another through airport security and was nervous one just wouldn’t do the trick.
“I bought them before to make the most of the sun. I went on the sunbeds a bit before the holiday but didn’t take the injections until just before I left,” he told SWNS. “I was too scared to take them away.”
In December, Wright did what any other person would do with a beauty hack gone wrong: He took to TikTok.
The video, which was posted in December, shows a photo from Wright’s holiday as he pokes fun at himself for getting a bit too crisp in the sun post-injections.
The video, which amassed more than 600,00 views and 23,000 likes, also garnered comments from people horrified at how dark Wright’s skin looked.
“So good it altered your genetics,” chided one user.
Others, though, actually asked where he got the injections, apparently hoping to bump up their tans, too. Wright, however, was quick to shut them down, warning of the aftereffects — and the judgmental looks from others.
“It was so embarrassing. People staring, like I had something severely wrong with me! The bleached hair didn’t help. I looked like a pint of Guinness!” he wrote in the comments.
Halfway through his trip, he noticed how dark he was, despite thinking the injections didn’t work because he bought them online — and, by the last day, he caught people staring.
“It looked really odd … because I had this white top and white hair and I think that makes it funnier,” he told SWNS.
“After I saw the photo, I thought, ‘Oh my god, this is not cool,’” he said. “Because the injections make tanning more efficient, being in the sun for nine hours a day is like being in the sun for a week every day and that was the problem.”
When he returned back home, he refused to tell his parents what he’d done, despite their questions about the abrupt change.
Now, Wright — whose excessive tan has since faded — is spreading awareness about the injections, urging people to do research into possible side effects.
“It’s really not worth it. There’s safer ways to tan, like fake tanning,” he claimed. “It gave me a wake-up call … It’s a classic case of being 20 and thinking you’re invincible.”
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