If you've forgotten to wear sunscreen on a long, sunny day outdoors, you've probably developed an agricultural tan on your arms, face, and neck. These tan lines are unwanted and usually stay on throughout the summer. It is then difficult to wear certain clothes that show off these strange marks. It can take a week or two to wear off, but it's possible to regain your natural skin tone and say goodbye to that unsightly agricultural tan.
Method 1 of 3: Reduce your tan
Step 1. Exfoliate your skin daily to help lessen your tan
Exfoliation is the removal of the top layer of dead cells on the surface of your skin, which can help remove bothersome tan lines more quickly. When the dead cells are gone, your complexion will begin to brighten and become natural again.
You may need to do several exfoliation sessions before you can notice a difference. You will therefore have to be patient
Step 2. Choose an exfoliation method
Exfoliation is simple and good for your skin. There are many methods that are more or less abrasive, so it's up to you to decide which one works best for you. Using a loofah or a glove with cleansing milk are two great ways to get started.
- Loofa is the most effective method because of its rougher texture. However, if you have sensitive or sunburned skin, avoid this method as it may irritate your skin. Gently rub your skin in circular motions for one to two minutes and repeat the operation once a day in the shower or in the bath.
- The glove method with cleansing milk is most suitable for sensitive skin, but it takes longer to take effect. It involves lathering your glove with soap and gently rubbing the skin in circular motions for 3 to 5 minutes, once a day, in your shower or in your bath.
Step 3. Relax in a milk bath to speed up the elimination of dead skin
The whole milk-based bath acts as a natural exfoliant by softening the top layer of your skin. It also helps rehydrate your skin. After you have softened your skin well, it becomes easier to wash away the dead skin.
- Spend at least 5-7 minutes in the water-whole milk bath.
- The tanned skin cells are already damaged and ready to go, the bath will just speed up this process.
Step 4. Use lemon juice and sugar to get rid of dead skin cells
The acid in lemon juice can help partially break down dead skin, while the texture of the sugar will act as an exfoliant. Simply cut a lemon in half and extract the juice that you will mix with a little sugar. Apply the mixture with a glove or your fingers and rub on your skin in circular motions.
Avoid going in the sun for at least an hour after this treatment, as you may get more tan
Method 2 of 3: Cover your tan lines
Step 1. Apply self-tanner to areas of your skin that have not tanned
It is the safest and healthiest solution to UV tanning. When choosing a self-tan product, start with a relatively light color and take a product that is also moisturizing to help fade unsightly tan lines. You will be tempted to take a self-tanner of the same color as the most tanned areas of your skin, but that would not be very smart… If you apply very dark colors to your non-tanned skin, you will get an orange result with spots. and welts on your ankles and feet which are the most difficult areas to tan.
- Moisturizing self-tanners are easier to apply.
- Progressive self-tanners work for about a week, but the result is more natural.
Step 2. Get a spray tan in the salon
Spray tanning specialists use an airbrush to gently apply a fake tan that will even out your skin tone. You will be able to sunbathe in specific areas in a semi-private atmosphere. This type of tan can last for up to two weeks and should fade at the same rate as your natural tan.
- It can be expensive to get a spray tan from a specialist. Think carefully about the investment this represents before you start.
- This is a good option if you are worried about applying your artificial tan on your own.
Step 3. Choose to fix your problem with indoor tanning
Tanning beds can be a good choice because they are convenient and tanning is done in privacy. Tanning beds will also give you a full, even tan, even if you have different tan lines on your skin. The paler areas should be the most affected by the tan and after a few sessions they should end up looking like the darker areas of your skin.
- In a tanning bed, you will be able to control which areas of your skin are exposed to UV and for how long. This will allow you to even out your skin tone more precisely.
- You should know that tanning beds can damage your skin. Tanning beds emit the same UV rays as the sun, which can cause skin damage and cancer.
Method 3 of 3: Prevent the onset of agricultural tanning
Step 1. Wear different fit clothes every day
Weird tan lines are caused by long exposures to the sun in a particular garment. By wearing clothing of varying sizes, you can expose different parts of your body to the sun to help even out your skin tone. For example, alternate between a tank top and a t-shirt to avoid tan lines along your arms and neck. You can even consider wearing loose, long-sleeved t-shirts or pants to protect all of your skin from the sun.
Step 2. Avoid exposure to the sun when UV rays are strongest
The sun is most intense between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. If you find yourself outdoors during these hours, try to get as much shade as possible. If this is not possible, try to protect your skin with clothing or sunscreen.
Step 3. Prevent the onset of agricultural tanning by using sunscreen
The best way to protect your skin and prevent unwanted tan lines from appearing when you are in the sun is to wear IPS (Sun Protection Index) 30 or higher sunscreen. Even after seeing the effects of the sun on your skin, keep applying sunscreen so you don't darken your tan lines further.
- It takes 30 minutes for the sunscreen to absorb into your skin and begin to protect you from UV rays.
- If you know ahead of time that you will be spending the day in the sun, apply sunscreen continuously to the areas of your skin that will be exposed so you don't get an agricultural tan.
- Apply aloe vera to sun damaged areas to speed up repair.
- Consume plenty of water and stay hydrated to help repair skin tissue.
- Always wear sunscreen when you are outdoors.
- Regularly hydrate your skin.
- Match the IPS of your sunscreen to your skin tone.