Melanotan for health, not vanity


Monday 26th January 2009

With so many people asking about Melanotan, aka afamelanotide, we thought it was time to revisit and see whether things had developed with them. Basically, to fill you in, Melanotan is a product that is being developed by an Australian company named Clinuvel, and when legal, will be available as a skin implant and injection. The effects of melanotan are increased tan without the need for cancer-causing sunlight.

What must be remembered though is that the sunless tanner is being developed for health reasons, rather than for vanity. Melanotan is not an alternative for Dove Summer Glow or St Tropez spray tans.

Melanotan, in a nutshell, will stimulate the melanocytes that lie in the deeper layers of the skin, which are natural components of the body. Melanocytes naturally produce melanin in reaction to the sun’s harmful rays to protect skin cells and prevent people from getting skin cancer; melanin is what gives you a tan. Melanocytes in darker skin produce more melanin, and so when melanotan is used in fairer skinned people, more melanin can be produced than would be naturally, offering heightened protection against UV rays. Cancer Research has given a good overview of Melanotan.

It’s understandable how people who aren’t at high risk from skin cancer might be interested in this so called ‘fantasy drug’, afterall Melanotan could provide you with an all year round tan, but don’t think it is not without its side effects. As with anything, Melanotan can have certain effects on people that i’m sure you would rather not happen, such as nausea, loss of appetite, weightloss, darkening of moles and freckles, facial flushing and sexual problems. As with any medicine, side effects would vary from person to person, but it’s something to bear in mind.

Of course the most important thing – the sale and/or advertising of Melanotan is currently ILLEGAL, so it isn’t (or shouldn’t) be available for the general public yet. We can’t stress enough how dangerous it is to use products that are still going through extensive trials and are not yet certfied as safe. We urge people to wait until Clinuvel have finished their tests and trials with this product before anyone steams in there without thinking. UK regulation of this industry is already laid back, which is why we have to look out for ourselves and be sensible about these things.

In the meantime, stick to the sun – within reason – use plenty of high factor SPF lotion when sunbathing, or go back to the bottle or spray tan. Just until we know for certain that this safe! Keep checking back here for updates!

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10 Responses to “Melanotan for health, not vanity”

  1. wreathconnection Says:

    I enjoy your blog very much! I am working on a new line for my business and am working on partnering The Health factors in with their beauty. Come and check me out and leave me a comment back and let me know what you think- and be sure to visit my ever- growing site,! Trying to make new friends all the time, I am always reading others’ posts to create a relationship with the other bloggers!!!

  2. joelle Says:

    I have a light Olive complexion, and I’ve been injecting two or three cycles of Melanotan per year for a few years now. Now, I am a deep golden brown, fading between cycles. I go to the tanning parlor less, and my understanding is that I am doing less damage to my skin when I do, so how is that not for my health?

    • skingenesishayley Says:

      Joelle have you experienced any particular side-effects by using Melanotan? It would be interesting to know if what everyone is saying is in fact true! Thanks!

  3. Melanotan / afamelanotide Says:

    There’s an excellent article that has just been published by Wired Magazine. It can be found here:

    it covers the news that Clinuvel has received approval from the FDA for human testing of melanotan one, “afamelanotide”.


    • skingenesishayley Says:

      Thanks for pointing us to the article from Wired. I think it reiterates what we have been saying about having caution with Melanotan. The article states that “American and British health officials warn [that injectable tan products] are already being abused. Using it could be dangerous to short and long-term health. It has not been tested for safety, quality or effectiveness and we don’t know the potential side effects yet.” (November 08 )

      So whilst the product may have FDA approval to undergo human trials, these are in a controlled environment for research purposes only, and have not got approval for wide free usage. As Joelle comments above, great results can be achieved from this product, however hidden dangers do occur with new products, and as skin specialists, we would always urge people to take care when using any new products. It’s similar to when you dye your hair for the first time, hairdressers always advise you do a patch test, just to be doubly safe that no adverse effects occur.

      Clinuvel themselves can’t stress enough that they have developed this product not for vanity or cosmetic reasons, but have spent so much time on it so it may treat certain skin diseases and to potentially protect fair-skinned people from developing skin cancer, which as you say Joelle, can only be a good thing.

  4. Heartburn Home Remedy Says:

    I read your blog for quite a long time and must tell you that your posts are always valuable to readers.

  5. melanotan Says:

    i agree that melanotan it not just for vanity of tanning yourself but also for protection of skin cancer… thanks for this information 🙂

  6. melanotan forum Says:

    wow! thank you for posting, this is such a informative and very useful article. now i have gain more knowledge about melanotan and what it is for. hope you’ll post more interesting articles here.

  7. tanning Says:

    i am learning just by reading your blogs! it’s nice to know that there is a quite solution for tan lovers to protect themselves in harmfulness of UV rays in our skin, though there is a counterpart effects…looking forward to see more information about this topic.

  8. Peptide Says:

    Melanotan peptides help people = Fact

    misuse is rampant and half the users end up looking foolish. safe use might evolve given improved targeted melanotropin analogs for tanning.

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