Sensible tanning: how to get a safe tan without damaging your skin
Whatever your skin type and however much you love the sun, here are the basics of safe tanning for a radiant return from your hols!
> While you're on holiday, avoid food and drink that dilates your blood vessels (alcohol and spicy food).
> Eat lots of fruit and veg, especially red and orange which contain loads of carotenoids (tomatoes, apricots and tropical fruit are best). These help the skin protect itself better against the harmful effects of the sun.
> Stay out of the sun during the hottest part of the day between 11am and 4pm.
> Don't spritz yourself with perfumed products before you hit the beach: they make your skin more sun-sensitive.
> Reapply your sun cream every 2 hours. Apply your sun cream properly and make sure your skin absorbs the SPF by massging it in properly.
> Get savvy about SPF. While you're better off using a medium SPF and reapplying it regularly than slapping on total block first thing in the morning and then not bothering to reapply for the rest of the day, experts warn that low SPF protection is just not enough. Use at least Factor 15.
> Don't skimp on the quantity of your suncream! A bottle should last you 8-10 days: if it doesn't, you're just not using enough! Aim not to bring it home with you and you'll end up with more space in your case for souvenirs (sounds like an excellent excuse to shop, if we ever heard one).
> If you're in and out of the pool like a yoyo, invest in a waterproof SPF and re-apply it regularly.
> Use aftersun to repair, cool and soothe your skin. Keep it in the fridge so it's nice and cool.
> If you end up with sunburn or skin allergies, don't expose your skin to the sun until it heals. Even total sunblock isn't enough: if you've damaged your skin, keep it out of the sun.