Tanning occurs when your skin increases the production of melanin because of exposure to sunlight. This is your body’s natural response for shielding the skin from sun damage as it helps absorb the excess radiation from the UV rays. Therefore, the time you spend in the sun is directly proportional to the suntan.
Suntan is caused by UVA, UVB, and UVC rays. UVA rays are the most dangerous rays which penetrate deep into the skin and damage the cells, which triggers the release of melanin and causes tanning. UVB rays damage the upper layers of the skin, mainly during summer. These rays damage the DNA which boosts the production of melanin. UVC rays can cause severe skin burns, and injuries to the eye, and can cause cancer.
Getting rid of a tan is a very difficult and lengthy process. Exfoliation and skincare are the primary factors that help in removing tan. However, the effectiveness of the methods depends on the person’s skin tone.
Here are some home remedies to effectively reduce a suntan –
Honey, lemon, and sugar scrub for suntan
Gentle exfoliation helps remove the layer of dead skin cells and reduces the appearance of a tan. For quick and effective tan removal at home, use lemon, honey, and sugar. Mix fresh lemon juice, honey, and sugar to make a scrub. Let it sit on your skin for 30 minutes and then wash it off with a gentle cleanser.
Oatmeal and buttermilk scrub
Soak 2 teaspoons of oatmeal in half a cup of water for about 5 minutes. Add 2-3 teaspoons of fresh and plain buttermilk to it. To make it hydrating, add honey to it. Mix these ingredients and form a paste and apply it to the tanned skin.
Rub it in a circular motion and keep it on for 20 minutes and wash it off with cool water.
Tomato face mask for suntan
Tomato is a great source of vitamin C and antioxidants that promote the growth of collagen, which gives younger skin. Its antioxidant lycopene also acts as a natural sunscreen.
Separate the pulp and juice of a tomato and apply it all over the affected areas. Keep it on for 15 minutes and wash it with water. Use this mask twice a week for tan-free glowing skin.
Curd and honey mask
Curd is known to exhibit bleaching properties and helps reduce dark spots. Lactic acid found in curd helps exfoliate and soothe the skin. Honey has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties and also exhibits skin healing properties.
Mix 1 tablespoon of honey with 2 tablespoons of curd. Apply a thick layer of this paste on your skin and let it dry for 15 minutes and then rinse with lukewarm water. Use it daily for visible results.
Gram flour and turmeric
Gram flour helps rejuvenate the skin and gives a healthy radiance to the skin. It also helps in exfoliating the skin. Turmeric is used since ancient times due to its beauty benefits. It gives the skin a natural glow, brightens skin, heals acne, manages inflammation, and fades dark spots.
In a bowl, add three tablespoons of gram flour, lemon juice, turmeric, and rose water. Mix all ingredients and form a thick paste. Apply this paste to the affected areas and let it dry for 10-15 minutes. Wash it off with lukewarm water. Use this mask twice a week for effective results.
Aloe vera mask
Aloe vera is one of the most potent ingredients widely used in skincare. It offers a brighter skin tone, protects skin from sun damage, soothes skin, and prevents damage caused by sun rays. It also has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that soothe the skin and help in treating suntan.
Use this mask at night, before going to bed. For this mask, you can use readymade aloe vera gels or extract them from a freshly cut aloe vera leaf. Apply a thick layer of the gel to your skin and wash it in the morning. Use this mask every day for the best results.
Sandalwood and turmeric mask
Sandalwood has soothing properties that help clear skin and provide relief from sun damage. Turmeric has over 300 antioxidants that help fight acne, brighten skin and give a youthful glow to the skin. Milk has exfoliating and brightening properties that help in getting rid of tan.
Mix sandalwood powder and turmeric with milk or coconut water and apply it to the skin as a face pack. Use this face mask 2-3 times a week for visible results.
Fuller’s earth to get rid of tanning
Fuller’s earth, also known as Multani mitti helps cool and soothe sunburns while giving your skin a healthy radiance. Mix fuller’s earth with milk or rose water to form a thick paste and apply it to your face. Let it sit on your face until dry and then wash it off with cool water.
Simple tips and tricks to prevent tanning
- Cover yourself while going out
- Use sunscreen throughout the year and reapply it after every two hours
- If possible, avoid going out between 10 am to 3 pm
- Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration
- Eat fiber-rich such as green leafy vegetables and fruits
- Wash your face twice a day
- Do not forget to protect your lips from the sun
- If these home remedies do not work or if you need immediate results, you can opt for laser toning, chemical peels, microdermabrasion, tan removal creams, or lightening actives