There’s nothing like the feeling of warm sun on your skin! And we love the extra benefit:
Tanning shrinks breakouts.
...Or so we thought.
If you also love a clear, sun-kissed complexion, brace yourself.
Because we might love the sun, but the sun doesn’t always love us.
Tanning For Acne
At first, sunlight can make your complexion look clearer and more even. Your face seems less oily, and a tan may disguise redness and blemishes.
But actually, sunshine can make your breakouts even worse!
First, the sun dries up facial oil and triggers your sebaceous glands. To rehydrate your skin, they pump out extra oil to compensate. Soon, your face is greasier than ever!
All that sunlight also results in dead skin cells that mix with the oil and clog your pores. Now you’ve paved the way for more breakouts!
Too much sun can also make blemishes leave behind dark spots and scarring. So even when breakouts heal, you’re never free of them!
Too much sun also makes you look old before your time. Sunlight breaks down collagen, causing premature sagging, wrinkling, and enlarged pores.
It can even thicken your skin, causing that dreaded “leathery” look. And this kind of skin is tough to clean and exfoliate, which your acne loves!
Now you have pimples like a 12-year-old, and wrinkles like a 90-year-old. Bad combo.
Sunlight and Skin Health
UV rays trigger melanin to cause tanning. But spoiler alert: tanning isn’t a good sign. It means your skin is already damaged.
And a sunburn? Your defenses are overwhelmed, triggering inflammation and peeling skin.
Your sensitive skin can’t fight all of this AND acne. It’s not healthy! And sometimes UV rays even mutate skin cells, causing life-threatening skin cancer.
Dark-skinned queens have more melanin and better resistance to sun damage, but UV RAYS AFFECT EVERYONE. Dark skin or light, you’re at risk. So be careful with your precious complexion!
The Tanning Bed Alternative
Some people love tanning salons and insist that they’re safer than laying out in the sun.
We hate to disagree, but…they’re wrong.
Just like regular sun exposure, tanning beds can harm your skin, resulting in extra oil, dead skin cells, clogged pores, a leathery complexion, age spots, premature wrinkles...the whole shebang.
Tanning beds also increase your risk of melanoma — the deadliest skin cancer — by 75%.
So not worth it.
Tips to Protect Your Acne-Prone Skin
- Wear sunscreen ALL THE TIME. We suggest a water-based sunscreen to avoid pore-clogging oils. Aim for an SPF of at least 30.
- Support your skin health by getting vitamin D from food instead of sunlight. Check out our comprehensive list of 99 Clear Skin Foods for the best vitamin-rich ingredients!
Be careful about products you use on sunburned skin. Choose a gentle cleanser like our Radiant Cleansing Nectar, which clarifies skin while reducing painful inflammation. Follow with a soothing, rehydrating moisturizer like our Flawless Nourishment Cream, rich with calming camellia oil and healing vitamin C.