Ok, so you have been exposed to the sun for too long lately and every time you shower you find your tan is fading away. One basic thing you need to understand is that in order to maintain your tan you first have to prepare your skin. Bare in mind that the dryer the skin gets, the more difficult is to maintain that tan as you will see your gorgeous colour fading away in your shower!
In order to maintain your tan you have to follow 2 simple steps: a) skin preparation routine and b) maintenance. It is important to ensure that you have first prepared your skin prior to exposure to the high UV rays and then to understand how crucial it is for your skin as well as your desired glow look to keep you skin hydrated and healthy for as long as possible. Avoiding these simple routines; which are undoubtedly the A-Z in maintaining a healthy glow during the hot days, you may end up with dump looking, dehydrated, dry and continuously flaky skin.
The key to a good looking tan and heathy glow is of course to stay hydrated; which doesn’t only refer to drinking water, but also to regularly moisturise your skin. If you are not the meticulous type, all you need to do is adopt a 2-step skin preparation routine (before and after exposure) , one that would be easy for you to adjust in your holiday too.
Follow these 6 simple steps to maintain your holiday tan and you will thank yourself for spending those 15 minutes;
If you have dry skin, it is possible that UV rays will not be absorbed and you won’t be getting your gradual tan. It would likely become even drier and your tan will be wearing away along with your skin cells when you shower. In the worst case scenario, you will be left with uneven tan, patches or peeling legs. To avoid this you need to exfoliate your body before exposure to the sun. To do so you can choose from one of the numerous body scrubs in the market. Here are some of my top 10 body exfoliators you can find in the shops and online. Alternatively, for those with low budget the best alternatives are bath exfoliator sponge pads or brushes. For ultimate exfoliating and for those that wouldn’t mind to spend a little extra time on preparation I would recommend using a body scrub in the shower and a soft brush on dry skin after your shower;which will act as a polisher and will remove any dead skin cells left from the first. Similarly, you may buy a lip exfoliator to take care of your lips too; something that we all think of as an unnecessary step.
Moisturise your skin before, in-between and after your tanning. Do not use any oils as oils are made to lock hydration and do not let the water be absorbed from the skin. Best thing to do is to use a rich body lotion that will stop you from peeling. For those with sensitive skin, I would recommend using an aloe vera based lotion or your aftersun that would also sooth your skin from long exposure and photosensitivity. You can optionally use your favourite oil spay to lock the moisture or your favourite body mist that would cool your skin’s temperature and will make you smell gorgeous throughout the day. Some of the body mists also moisturise your skin further leaving it smooth and shiny, looking glowing and making your tan look even better, especially on your legs.
3. Put your SPF on
Choose your SPF index according to your skin needs. I have medium olive skin and I always go for 50 SPF for my face and 30 SPF for my body. Your face needs more protection than your body as the skin is thinner and it is easy to get freckles, early fine lines or wrinkles from long exposure in the sun. Do not get confused by what you read, SPF does NOT slow down your tanning process. In contrast, SPF provides a shield that protects your skin from burns, patches, discolouration, freckles, moles and most importantly prevents skin cancer. Choose carefully your vacation beauty buys such as your primers, face creams, concealers, lip balms, foundation or bb creams to contain SPF. Make sure you wear suncream and that you reapply regularly, especially after being in the water. Below are some of the best make-up and skin care products that are available in the market:
Lip Treatment and eye cream
4. Eat carotene
Diet is also a must when it comes to skin and following a diet rich in vitamin A and beta-carotene helps your body make the best skin it can.“Skin superfoods“ such as carrots, tomatoes, sweet potatoes and cantaloupe have a very potent antioxidant called carotene. According to studies carotene has a great impact in increasing skin pigmentation and consuming in regular portions of it can create a natural tan. Carotenoids are also well- known as preventing skin cancer due to their high consistency of antioxidants.
5. Stay hydrated
As already mentioned the most important step in keeping a healthy glow and maintaining your body moisture is to stay hydrated. Drink a lot of water and avoid caffeine. If you cannot stick to drinking 2 litres of water daily, then find tasty alternatives such as your favorite fruits. My favorite one for summer is watermelon, I can literally eat half of a watermelon on my own. Cucumber is also very hydrating and I use it a lot in salad or tzatziki (traditional greek yogurt and cucumber cold dip). Coconut water may well be an alternative to water as it is super hydrating, low in carbohydrates and sodium and rich in potassium.
Waxing strips can make your legs dry and using them after t remove the top layer of your skin resulting in the removal of your tan if applied on a dry skin. To avoid getting skin breakage from waxing, shave carefully. Shaving is also tricky because cutting your skin while tanned can leave you white marks as the skin will be renewing. It would appear that using an electric shaver is the best alternative to avoid accidents and protect your tan. I personally recommend laser hair removal which I understand it is a bit pricey and not everyone can afford it, however, one you finish your sessions you won’t have to worry about having to do it frequently or interrupting your tanning. A hair laser removal should be done early before summertime or any exposure to the sunlight.
I developed these tips over a long period and finally arrived to the conclusion that my best looking tan is when I follow all of the above steps.
I hope you found this post interesting and helpful and if you would like to share your own tips or ideas for prolonging your tan, share tips with me in the comments box below!
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