Sorry to break it to you, but no, there isn't a safe way to get a tan. Any change of color to your skin (a tan or sunburn) is a sign of sun damage...which is also the cause of wrinkles and skin cancer. Trying to safely tan is like trying to eat healthy while eating at McDonald's - the intention of caring for your body is there, but you're not quite hitting the mark. As much as 90% of wrinkles and aging on a person's face is due to UV radiation..which is totally preventable.
We get it though, summer is right around the corner and you want to at least look like you've been basking under the sun. To preface, any tiny amount of sun increases your chance of developing skin cancer. So while there is no way to safely get a tan, there are ways to minimize your chances while still getting a little color.
Sunscreen and Reapply
No surprise here that we're starting off with sunscreen! SPF is not an option when you're in the sun, it's a necessity. And not only SPF, but look for broad spectrum SPF as it will block both UVA and UVB rays from reaching your skin -- UVA rays are the culprit of aging signs (wrinkles, fine lines) and UVB rays cause sunburns. Apply liberally over any part of your body exposed to the sun (this means your hairline, ears, hands, feet, etc) and be sure to reapply every 2 hours (especially if you're in the water) for maximum protection.
Wear UPF Clothing
UPF clothing is your best bet in avoiding sun damage. Tutublue's UPF50+ clothing blocks 98% of UVA and UVB rays, and that protection will never wash out. For full protection of your body, wear one of our Long Swimsuits or Leggings and Hooded Pullover that will cover you from head-to-toe. But if you're okay with showing some skin, wear any of our other suits to partially protect your body..just remember Tip #1 and apply sunscreen liberally over any area that isn't covered by your UPF50+ clothing.
If you are taking the risk and laying out in the sun, make sure to rotate often so your skin isn't in direct sun exposure for a long period of time in one sitting. Plus, you'll also get a more even tan.
Watch The Time Of Day
The sun is strongest between 10am and 4pm at the height of summer. Try to head out in the off hours and then seek shade during the max UV exposure times.
The only way to safely get a tan is by getting a fake tan. There are dozens of options for gradual and instant tans that will make you look like you've been tanning all summer long. This way you can completely eliminate any sun damage risk, and you can choose the kind of tan and how tan you get. If you don't trust yourself with an at-home self-tanner, find a spray tan salon that will customize a tan for your specific complexion.
Visit Your Dermatologist Annually
Even if you are an A+ student in sun safety, make sure to visit your dermatologist once a year. Of course people who 'tan safely' are at a higher risk, but even if you're extra careful your skin is still exposed to the sun. Your derm will check the areas you wouldn't think to check and you'll have more piece of mind knowing you're healthy.
Never Use Tanning Bed
Something you should never do is use a tanning bed. They emit 3 times the amount of UV than the sun, and just 20 minutes in a tanning bed is the equivalent to several hours under the sun. Trust us, it's not worth it.