Tanning adds glamour to the body’s skin by concealing the uneven skin pigmentation and blemishes. A good tan can also complement the clothes you put on besides concealing tan lines that tend to occur due to the process. So using suntan is like a miracle and also it demand lots of consciousness. When sun tanning, however, care need to be taken in the following key areas.
1. Know your tan limit
Forget the notion that long hours in the sun equates to deeper skin coloration. Every skin has a limit to which it can comfortably produce melanin beyond which that does not change regardless of the exposure time. Before heading out into the sun therefore, you should know your melanin cut-off point; normally, it is two to three hours for people with dark skins but much less for their lighter skin complexions.
2. Hydrate the skin
A hydrated skin will work better when tanning than a dry skin. Skin hydration can be achieved by drinking plenty of water and moisturizing with lotions. When moisturizing, however, you should consider creams or lotions with sodium PCA as one of the ingredients. This ingredient nourishes the epidermal layer of the skin and traps atmospheric moisture setting up a good canvas for the sun’s UV rays to act on. In the same process, it is also recommended to exfoliate to remove the dead skin cells.
3. Consider the dress code when tanning
Since tanning involves making the skin darker by exposing it to UV rays, tan lines tend to form especially in areas where clothes end on the skin’s surface. Areas covered by garments or swim suits will be lighter than those that were exposed to the sun. Try to use as short clothes as possible in order to avoid too many tan lines appearing all over the body. Bikini or pants is okay for those who sun tan at the beach.
4. Use sunscreen in the process
Failure to use sunscreen to protect the skin from the harmful UVA and UVB rays from the sun is one of the common summer sunscreen mistakes. If you intend to sit in the sun for more than an hour, the least you could do, is to invest in a sunscreen of SPF of at least 15.It is also important to apply your sunscreen some minutes prior to basking in the sun in order to allow it time to be absorbed into the body. In addition to that, reapply the sunscreen at predetermined intervals and not just once.
5. Avoid sunglasses when in the sun
When tanning in the sun, simply shut your eye lids and let the sun’s rays hit your eyes. Research has shown that the hypothalamus gland is triggered by light acting on the optic nerves which consequently leads to melanin production. Melanin is responsible for the skin’s dark pigmentation thus the tan. You cannot achieve this with sunglasses on.
6. Move as you tan
One of the common mistakes people make when they tan, is sticking to one position when in the sun. The aim of tanning is to make your skin achieve a uniform coloration throughout the whole body. In order to achieve this, you need to constantly switch positions from lying facing upwards, downwards and sideways as well. Allow each side of the body an equal amount of exposure time to the sun. Alternatively, you could walk in the sun for hours if you don’t fancy sitting down.
7. Protect your lips
While exposing your eyes and face to the sun, protect your lips in the process. The reason behind this is that; the lips do not produce melanin and as a result they cannot tan. Too much exposure of the lips to the sun can make them dry and unpleasant not to mention the health hazards. Protect the lips with lip balm while sun tanning. Prefer those with sun block capabilities.
8. Prefer supplements to tan accelerating lotions
Tan accelerating creams just accelerate the production of melanin but do not in real sense increase their production. Supplements on the other hand, specifically the beta-carotene supplement, can increase melanin production for better defense against UV rays thus creating the dark tan.
9. Eat a sun healthy diet
Tomatoes and vegetables contain antioxidants that can protect the skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays. On the other hand, caffeine and green tea reduces chances of triggering skin cancer while dark chocolate prevents sunburn. Maintain these diets each time before you go to the sun bathe.
Tanning in the sun has its own risks just like other tanning alternatives but the above tips offer the best route in order to navigate through the risks and achieve that dark golden tan. Basically, the concept being stressed here is; in your journey for beauty, treat your skin with care and it will reciprocate likewise. So go for it.