Top tips for safe tanning
While our latest issue is all about achieving a glorious golden glow this summer – whether real or fake – Beauty Editor Justine Brennan’s shares her advice on safe tanning for you and your family
- Don’t wait until you’re in the sun before you apply suncream. Apply 15-30 minutes before going outside and let the cream soak into the skin properly.
- Don’t use anything with an SPF of less than 15. You’ll still tan using an SPF of 15, 30 or 50 as the numbers multiply the time you’d normally be able to be in the sun without burning.
- Water-resistant creams need to be re-applied after every swim or after every two hours of sun exposure as sweat can wash the effective barrier away.
- Stay in the shade between midday and 3 o’clock when the sun’s rays are at their most damaging.
- Repair the damage every night with a good quality aftersun.
Going with fake tan?
It will stick and look uneven around dry, rough areas of skin, so apply moisturiser to knees, ankles, elbows and wrists before applying the tan.
SPFs – or sun protection facts!
- The sun’s rays contain UVA, UVB and UVC radiation. We don’t need to worry about UVC, which is absorbed by the ozone, but it’s important to protect our skin from both UVA and UVB as both can cause long-term damage, so it’s important when choosing sun cream to find a brand that protects against both – if it only contains one don’t buy it!
- UVB are the sun’s burning rays that cause sunburn and skin cancer. UVA are the deeper-penetrating rays that cause premature ageing and wrinkles.
- The average adult will need six teaspoons of sunscreen to properly protect the body for each application.
- The sun’s rays aren’t all bad – sun exposure gives us vital vitamin D and that has lots of health benefits including fighting depression and helping to keep bones strong. Although it’s not advisable to go without sunscreen in hot climates, short bursts of midday sun (5-10 minutes) without cream in the UK has real benefits.
If you’ve got any tanning tips you’d like to share, why not do so below?