Your guide to safe sun tanning – with The Euro Tan
The best summer accessory is undoubtedly a gorgeous tan.
While many prefer to fake instead of bake their tans, there are still plenty who may disagree.
As humans it’s impossible for us not to enjoy being out in the sun. Sunlight boosts our serotonin (our body’s natural Valium) levels, which reduces feelings of stress and anxiety.
To properly function, our bodies also need a healthy dose of Vitamin D. While this is available in supplement form, the sun provides the highest dose, increasing the health of our bones, joints, skin, hair, nails and our immune systems.
While we may love the health effects the sun gives us, not to mention the way our skin looks with a natural tan, prolonged exposure to the sun can cause harmful damage, including skin cancer. This is why it’s so important for us to know how to suntan safely!
Outdoor sunbathing, while much, much safer than using a tanning bed, still isn’t risk-free, but these risks can be reduced.
To learn more about how to sun tan safely, here are some top tips from The Euro Tan.
1. Prep your skin
Prepping your skin is essential for an even coloured, flake-free tan!
Just like fake tanners, getting an even tan naturally relies on super smooth skin. The best way to achieve this is to exfoliate.
There are a variety of body exfoliants out there but you want to make sure the exfoliant you use is gentle on your skin and as natural as possible. The Euro Tan’s Euro Glow Coffee Scrub is the perfect way to quickly ensure your skin is silky smooth and ready to tan.
The next step in prepping your skin is to use sunscreen. While this may seem counterproductive there is nothing more important than properly protecting your skin from UV damage.
Make sure to look for a sunscreen that is broad spectrum – one that protects you from UVA (ageing) and UVB (burning) rays. Make sure to also look at the UVA star rating (ranging 1-5). The SPF rating is what will filter out UVB rays. SPF30 filters out 97 per cent while SPF50 filters out 98 per cent. Either one of these is fine – just remember to apply 20 minutes before heading outside so your skin can absorb the sunscreen, and make sure you reapply every 2 hours.
2. Use a tanning accelerator
After your sunscreen has been applied and absorbed, use a tanning accelerator to reduce the time spent developing a tan.
Tanning accelerators work by boosting the melanin in your body. Melanin is produced by cells called melanocytes. Melanin synthesis usually only occurs when our bodies are exposed to UV light. The more concentrated melanin levels in the skin are, the faster and darker you will tan.
The Euro Tan’s Intensive Tanning Gel is formulated to work on top of your sunscreen to give you that perfect European summer tan. The gel’s main ingredient in this product is Beta-Carotene, which has been proven to help boost your body’s ability to produce melanin.
Using tanning accelerators like this will help you reach your deepest, darkest tanning potential by ultimately spending less time in the sun.
3. Know your tanning limit and choose your time wisely
When it comes to tanning, different types of skin will tan better than others, it all depends on the amount of melanin in the skin.
Lighter skin (Types 1 and 2) may struggle to or never tan, or sometimes they just burn in the sun. Olive and darker skin (Types 3 and 4), on the other hand, will naturally tan much faster.
Our skin actually has a tanning limit point. This occurs when it physically can’t produce any more melanin (the tanning pigment), no matter how long you stay in the sun.
Melanin limits are typically reached after 2-3 hours, or much less if you have fair skin. Make sure to learn about your skin type and tanning cut-off time before sun tanning. Subjecting yourself to a longer period of time means subjecting your skin to UV damage.
Also, make sure you choose your tanning time wisely. The sun is typically strongest between 12pm and 3pm, and will be when it is likely to cause the most damage to your skin. To avoid burning and other effects of UV damage, the best times to tan are in the morning or after 3 pm.