Summers may mean lots of ice-creams and beach & swimming pool visits. Summers may also mean traveling to work in the scorching heat. It may mean a lot of things, but special tanning!
How Tanning Happens?
You might have noticed that often your exposed body parts such as the face, arms, hands, legs, feet, back, and neck are a shade darker than the body parts which are not exposed to sunlight.
When skin cells are exposed to the UV rays from the sun, they kick into protection mode. The melanin from melanocytes is transferred to keratinocytes, which are the surface skin cells. As a protective mechanism, the melanin pigment blocks UV radiation from further cell damage. The melanin is piled on top of the cell’s nucleus, like an umbrella; this process occurs in all skin cells exposed to sun exposure. Therefore, tanning is visible over the exposed part of the body.
Tanning is the process by which the skin pigment (melanin) increases in the skin after exposure to the sun leading to a darkening effect. This is the natural defence process of our body when it is exposed to sunlight. It helps protect your skin from the sun like a shield.
People with lighter skin tones typically cannot create an adequate amount of melanin pigment, the amount that gets created isn’t as efficient, and therefore the exposed areas get skin burn.
The sun’s rays contain two types of ultraviolet radiation that reach your skin: Ultraviolet A (UVA) and Ultraviolet B (UVB). When UVA and UVB rays penetrate into the lower layer of the epidermis, it triggers cells called Melanocytes to produce more melanin; both UVA as well as UVB, are responsible for tanning.
The outer layer of our skin contains melanin which is the darkening agent. Melanin is responsible for setting the skin tone. However, it may seem like a bad thing as its presence decides how fair or tan one is, but melanin is a useful pigment as it protects the skin from the sun’s ultraviolet rays. When your skin is exposed to the sun’s rays, the skin produces more melanin and gets tanned. Prolonged sun exposure can also lead to skin damage like sunburns and it reduces skin elasticity, which leads to premature ageing.
Staying out of the sun altogether may seem like the only logical answer. But who wants to live like a hermit?
Sunscreen is your best friend.
Wear sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 every day, even on cloudy days and when you don't plan on spending much time outdoors. Wearing sunscreen every day is essential because as much as 80% of sun exposure is incidental — the type you get from walking to work or eating lunch outside.
The SPF number on a sunscreen shows the level of UVB protection it gives. Sunscreens with a higher SPF number provide more defence against the sun's damaging UV rays.
Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen that blocks both UVA and UVB rays. Ideally, it should also be hypoallergenic and non-comedogenic so it doesn't cause a rash or clog your pores.
Reapply sunscreen every 1½ to 2 hours. If you're not sure you're putting on enough, switch to sunscreen with a higher SPF, like SPF 30. No matter what the SPF, the sun can break down the UVA ingredients in sunscreen. Even if you don't get a sunburn, UVA rays could still be doing unseen damage to your skin.
Take frequent breaks. The sun's rays are strongest between 10:00 A.M. and 4:00 P.M. During those hours, take breaks to cool off indoors or in the shade for a while before heading out again.
How Can You Get Rid Of Tan?
Looking for a natural way to get rid of tanning? If yes, start including tomatoes in your beauty regime. Yes, you read it right. Tomato is one ingredient that has a number of benefits starting with the fact that they are loaded with antioxidants and are also super-rich in vitamins and minerals which in removing tanning from the face and body.
Your Skin’s Summer Companions: