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How to Remove Sun Tan from Skin?

How to Remove Sun Tan from Skin?

Holiday is delightful, until you realize your skin has turned two tones darker due to suntan! Is not it? But do not you worry, because there are effective styles to get relieve of the scourged skin. With the right skin care approach, you no longer have to worry about stepping out on the sand. Let's dig in to know more.

What's Tanning?

Tanning is the process of melanin (skin color) increase caused by exposure to sun. This is the body's natural way of shielding the skin from sun damage. Your body releases melanin just under your skin’s face when exposed to harsh sun. This helps to absorb the radiation from UV shafts. So the advanced the UV shafts exposure, the advanced the saturation, and the darker the tan.

Areas prone to tan

  • Face
  • Arms
  • Hands
  • Legs
  • bases
  • Back
  • Neck


Causes of skin tanning

The sun consists of UV rays with three wavelengths


These rays are considered the most dangerous element responsible for skin tanning. The waves from UVA penetrate to the deeper layers of your skin, damaging the cells. The cells of the melanocytes release melanin, which causes the brown, dark color of your skin.


UVB rays generally damage the upper layers of your skin. Exposure to these rays is greatest in the summer and decreases during rest periods. Unlike UVA, UVB rays do not stimulate melanocytes. However, they do cause damage to DNA, which further stimulates melanin production.


When the waves from UVA penetrate the skin layers, they stimulate melanocytes (skin' cells) to produce excess melanin (skin darkening). This darkens further through oxidation and causes the skin to tan.


Types of tan

There are different types of skin tan and reactions to the sun depending on your skin color.


Skin Color

Reaction To Sun Exposure

Level Of Tanning

Pale white

Always burns

No tan

White to light beige

Burns easily

Minimal tan


Burns moderately

Tans to light brown

Light brown

Burns minimally

Tans to moderate brown

Moderate brown

Rarely burns

Tans to dark brown

Dark brown or black

Never burns

Tans profusely


Treatments for the removal of tan


Laser tinting

A dermatologist uses a radiation device to break down melanin color and minimize skin tanning. Radiation devices (Light Modification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation) are sources of high intensity monochromatic coherent light. When applied to the skin, this light energy is converted into heat energy to target a specific chromophore (skin color - melanin) without damaging the girdle. They reach the deeper layers of the skin to remove the excess melanin. Chemical peels This type of tanning treatment is used to remove the superficial dead skin layers where excess melanin has accumulated.

Chemical peels

Use glycolic acid, trichloroacetic acid, salicylic acid, lactic acid or carbolic acid (phenol). Depending on the intensity, chemical peels are divided into the following categories

  1. Superficial peeling
  2. Medium peeling
  3. Deep peeling



  • Is a tan removal treatment to remove the dead skin cells that contain excess accumulated melanin. It stimulates new cells to regenerate faster than they would naturally. The result: skin looks firmer, tighter and more mature.

    - Crystal microdermabrasion

    Tiny particles are sprayed through a wand onto your face.

    - Microdermabrasion with diamond tips

    Your skin is exfoliated through direct contact with an applicator.

     Creams to remove tan

    Most tan removal creams on the market lighten the top layers of the skin. A good facial tan removal cream or serum will penetrate the deeper layers of the skin and inhibit the enzymatic activities that cause melanin production.

    Lightening agents

    Lightening agents are chemical ingredients that promote skin lightening by fighting tanning of the skin. Licorice, niacinamide, vitamin C, and kojic acid are some lightening agents that are effective in removing facial tan. So what exactly are they?


    Licorice root contains glabridin and liquiritin, which help with skin tanning problems.

    Vitamin C

    The enzyme tyrosinase is involved in melanin production in the skin. Vitamin C acts as a tyrosinase inhibitor, reducing melanin and skin tanning.

    Kojic acid

    Kojic acid is derived from a fungus-like fungus produced during fermentation. It inhibits the production of melanin and penetrates the upper layers of the skin, providing a lightening effect. 


    Niacinamide, or vitamin B3, can be used to remove tan and lighten the skin. It is effective because it reduces the amount of melanin released to the surface by pigment-producing cells (melanocytes) by more than half.

    Face pack

    wax, face wash: De-tan face packs help remove tanned skin cells that have accumulated in your body after exposure to the sun's UV rays. They do not make the skin lighter, but they do help to evenly tan the skin.

    These treatments contain natural ingredients like papaya, lemon and tomato or chemical ingredients like lactic acid, niacinamide, willow bark extract, etc. They help to lighten the upper layers of the skin.


    Gentle exfoliation is an effective technique to remove pigmented dead skin cells from the skin' surface. The result is a clearer, more even skin tone that reduces the appearance of tan.

    People with sensitive skin may opt for chemical peel techniques that use chemicals such as alpha and beta hydroxy acids to dissolve dead skin cells. People with oily skin may opt for mechanical exfoliation methods that use brushes or sponges to remove dead skin cells.


    Bleaching is an effective and immediate solution to remove tan. It helps to remove the dead skin cells, moisturizes the skin and lightens the skin tone. When you rinse off the bleaching cream, it exfoliates the top layer of your skin, making it look visibly brighter and more radiant.


    However, do not perform regular bleaching as the chemical ingredients in it can damage your skin.

    Home Remedies

    The following home remedies for skin whitening have been used by people for centuries, but contain no scientific evidence.

    1. Lemon juice and honey

    Lemon juice is considered an old and effective method for removing tan. Lemon juice has a bleaching property that helps remove tan from the skin. Honey keeps the skin soft and supple. Take a tablespoon of lemon juice and add some honey to it. Apply it to your skin and leave it on for half an hour. Wash it off.

    1. Face pack with turmeric and Bengal gram

    This is our Indian grandmothers' tip on how to remove tan from face and skin. Mix one tablespoon of Bengal gram powder with one teaspoon of turmeric, some lemon juice and curd to make a thick paste. Apply it on your face and neck, leave it for half an hour and then wash it off. All ingredients are natural, anti-tan ingredients.

    1. Papaya and honey

    Papaya is a common home remedy for tanning. It contains the enzyme papain, which is known to lighten the skin, while honey helps keep the skin supple. Mash a handful of papaya with honey and apply it to your face. Leave it on for 20 minutes and wash it off.

    1. Potato juice

    The juice extracted from potatoes is a powerful bleaching agent. It can lighten sun tan as well as your dark circles. Peel the skin of a potato and grind it in a blender. Apply it to the tanned areas of your face and leave it on for 15 minutes. Wash it off with cold water.

    1. Coconut milk

    Coconut milk is very nourishing and moisturizing for the skin, restoring the lost moisture. Its content of vitamin C and mild acids helps remove tan. Soak a cotton ball in fresh coconut milk and apply it to your face. Let it dry completely and then wash it off with a mild cleanser.

    1. Saffron and milk

    Saffron contains skin-soothing and brightening properties that make it an effective ingredient for removing tan. It contains bioactive compounds that protect the skin from harmful UV rays, reversing the effects of tanning. Soak a few saffron threads in milk/cream, strain it after two hours and apply it to the tanned area. Wash it off with water after 10-15 minutes.

    1. Oatmeal and buttermilk

    Oatmeal has excellent exfoliating properties, while buttermilk, rich in lactic acid, removes tan and improves skin tone. Soak 2 teaspoons of oats or oatmeal in ½ cup of water and let it sit for 5 minutes. Add 2-3 teaspoons of butter to it. Mix them well until you get a paste. Apply it on the tanned areas and rub it gently. Leave it on for 20 minutes and then wash it off.


    Other natural ingredients to remove tan are:

    - Tomato and yogurt

    - Orange juice and yogurt

    - Aloe vera

    - Ice cubes

    - Bitter gourd

    - Multani mitti


    How to prevent sun tan?

    - Cover yourself completely when you go outdoors during the day.

    - Use hats, sunglasses, stoles, etc.

    - Avoid going outdoors during peak sun hours (10 a.m. to 2 p.m.)

    - Apply sunscreen before you leave the house and reapply every two hours. [7]

    - Stay hydrated. Drink at least 15-20 glasses of water a day in the summer to keep skin from drying out. Eat healthy, high-fiber foods like green fruits and vegetables.

    - If you are in the sun regularly or in the pool often, apply sunscreen every 20 minutes.

    - Choose sun-friendly cosmetics. Apply a moisturizer during the day. Choose mineral-based ingredients instead of cream makeup.

    - Wash your face at least twice a day.

    - Consume healthy, fiber-rich foods such as vegetables and fruits to strengthen your skin's defenses and prevent sun damage from within.


    The above preventive measures are not scientifically proven. But people have firmly believed in them since time immemorial.


    Wrap up

    The first and best way to get rid of a tan is to protect your skin from the harmful UV rays. A tan usually fades on its own, as your skin naturally sheds the tanned skin cells and replaces them with new ones. However, if you want to lighten your skin, you can use treatments, tan removal creams or simple home remedies. Also, make sure to eat a nutrient-rich, healthy diet and follow a proper skin care routine to keep your skin healthy and glowing.

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