One of the best things about the summertime is shedding your pasty winter skin and attaining that glorious golden glow and although fake tanning will always be the safest way to achieve this glow, there are some benefits to getting out in the sun. Sunlight provides Vitamin D which is important for maintaining healthy bones, skin and teeth AND sunlight provides Seratonin which is natures “happy chemical” to help maintain good moods, lower depression and help combat anxiety. Although there are benefits to exposing yourself to natural sunlight there are also dangers. Spending too much time in the sun can heighten your risk of getting skin cancer and unfortunately here in New Zealand, more people die from melanomas every year than in car accidents, which is a shocking statistic.
So, to help you get a healthy summer glow we’ve put together a few handy tips to remember when you’re out in the sun. Happy tanning!
1. Wear Sunscreen
This one is a no-brainer! But the thing to remember here is don’t just choose a bottle with an SPF, what you need to look out for are the words “Broad Spectrum” or “UVA” and always opt for a high SPF so, an SPF 30+ will filter about 97% UVB rays and an SPF 50 will filter out about 98%. Our pick for sunscreens are the Nivea Sun protect & moisture SPF 30 with UVA + UVB broad-spectrum filters and vitamin E and the Nivea Sun ultra sport cooling SPF 50 with UVA + UVB broad-spectrum filters, both of these are 4-hour water resistant.
To achieve a longer, more even tan try to exfoliate before heading out for a tanning sesh. Exfoliating your skin will remove the top layer of dead skin, revealing underneath a fresh layer of skin which will hold your tan longer. We’re absolutely loving the Girl Undiscovered Stint In The Wilderness Body Scrub with bamboo, thanaka and cinnamon bark to help scrub away those dead skin cells naturally.
3. Know When Enough Is Enough
Don’t be that silly person who sits in the sun for hours on end. The truth is, is that your skin actually has a “tanning time” so generally for most people after about two to three hours your skin won’t produce any more melanin which is the tanning pigment so once this time is up you are just damaging your skin and opening yourself up to premature ageing and skin damage.
4. Sunbeds Are A No-Go Zone
Absolutely under no circumstances should you use a sunbed! Tanning beds actually pump out an alarming amount of UVA and pretty much no UVB, which is what stimulates Vitamin D. So you are putting yourself at a much higher risk of getting skin cancer.
5. Eating Certain Foods Can Help Reduce Sun Damage
Who would have thought that eating certain foods would help reduce your risk of burning in the sun? In fact, I had no idea about this fact until I was researching for this article! Apparently, your skin contains a natural SPF called lycopene and eating certain foods can boost your skins natural sun protection by 33%! Foods like tomatos and other red and orange fruit and veg and tomato paste is said to be the best thing you can eat to enhance your lypolene. Dark chocolate is also filled with flavonoids to help protect against sunburn and caffeine will help protect against skin cancer!
6. Fake It Til’ You Make It
Our final tip is to forget toasting yourself in the sun altogether and eliminate any risk of damaging your skin by opting to use fake tan instead! There are plenty of amazing, streak free, natural looking tanning products on the market, that make for quick and easy results so you don’t have to spend ours toasting yourself on rotation out in the sun. Our fave at the moment is Bondi Sands Liquid Gold self-tanning foam with a lovely coconut scent. It comes with a tanning mitt for easy application and don’t forget to exfoliate beforehand for an even glow!