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Home Remedies For Tanned Skin

By Dr Rajeev Singh +2 more


The skin uses sunlight to make vitamin D, which is essential for bone formation. People can take the vitamin D they need with only about 5 to 15 minutes of sun exposure two to three times a week.1 The outer layer of skin has cells that contain melanin. Melanin is a pigment responsible for protecting the skin from the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays. People get tan due to the overproduction of melanin, which is a result of UV exposure. This tan disappears when newer cells move to the skin surface, and tanned cells are shed off.2

Skin tan is a sign of sun damage. There is no such thing as a healthy tan. Getting a tan provides no protection from sunburn and other skin damage.3

home remedies for tan removal

What Causes Tan Skin?

Exposure of the skin to ultraviolet (UV) radiation increases the production of melanin to protect the skin from damage. Melanin is the pigment responsible for imparting colour to the eyes, hair, and skin. The increase in melanin causes the skin to darken, which is referred to as tanning.3

UV rays are a type of radiation from the sun to the earth’s surface. The two forms of UV rays that reach the earth are UVA and UVB. UVB rays cause sunburn, whereas UVA rays travel deep into the skin and cause damage. Melanin is produced by the body to protect itself from UVA radiation. As a result, the skin becomes darkened, which is why you get tan.1 

Symptoms of Tan Skin:

The main symptom of skin tan is skin tone darkening within 48 hours of sun exposure.3 

Avoiding direct sun exposure by using a scarf and UV-protected goggles are a good way of preventing tanning and eye damage. Using medicated sunscreens of SPF 30 before sun exposure helps in preventing tanning to some extent.

Dr. Nikhil Yadav, MBBS MD,CCEBDM

Suggested Home Remedies for Tan Skin:

Some of the home remedies for skin tan treatment are as follows:

1. Saffron

Saffron provides protection from exposure to ultraviolet rays, which cause damage to the skin. Saffron acts as a natural sunscreen to protect from damage caused due to the sun. Saffron is also said to possess skin lightening and tan lightening properties. It can be used with milk to lighten skin colour.4 You can also put saffron as an ingredient in homemade face masks.

2. Grape Seeds

Grape seeds are rich in vitamin C and vitamin E. It stops hyperpigmentation due to increased melanin synthesis. By stopping melanin synthesis, it might provide skin lightening effects.4 The oil obtained by pressing grape seeds can be applied directly to the skin. You can also mix this oil with your face or body moisturiser and apply it to the skin.

3. Green Tea

Green tea provides protective benefits against skin damage caused due to ultraviolet rays exposure.4 Tanning is also a sign of damage caused due to the sun. Green tea can be applied directly to the skin. You also can use green tea to make a facemask and apply it to the skin to get good results.

4. Beefsteak Plant

This herb is used as an ingredient in cosmetic formulations. It has antioxidant effects and anti-ageing properties. It is also used as a skin-lightening agent in hyperpigmentation. The skin lightening effect might be beneficial to manage tan.4

5. Coffee

Consumption of coffee may be beneficial in reducing skin damage due to sunlight (photodamage).5 You can also apply coffee to the skin by mixing it with your homemade face mask. Mixing coffee grounds with olive oil and applying it to the face in a circular motion will also give you good results.

6. Liquorice Root

Liquorice root extract is a part of many cosmetic formulations meant for skin lightening. It imparts skin lightening effects by reducing the overproduction of melanin.6 To use liquorice root for your skin, you can make liquorice root powder and apply it directly to the affected area.

7. Aloe Vera Gel

Aloe vera imparts protective benefits to the skin against ultraviolet radiation damage like tanning. It has antioxidant and free radical scavenging properties that are beneficial for the skin.7 You can apply aloe vera gel directly to the skin to get the benefits.

You can also follow these steps to protect your skin from UV radiation and prevent the worsening of your skin tan.

8. Limiting Sun Exposure

Between 10 am to 4 pm, the sun’s rays are strongest. Avoid staying out during this time. It is important to know that you can still get sun exposure on cloudy days or in the shade.1

9. Wearing Sunglasses

Use sunglasses that block UVA as well as UVB radiation. Sunglasses will also provide protection to the tender skin around the eyes from sun damage.8

10. Using a Good Sunscreen

You should use a broad-spectrum sunscreen that gives protection from both UVA and UVB radiation. The sunscreen should have a sun protection factor (SPF) of 15 or higher. In case of lighter skin tone, you can use sunscreen with an SPF 30 or higher. You need to apply sunscreen 20 to 30 minutes before going outside and reapply it every 2 hours.1 

11. Wearing a hat

Wearing a hat with a broader brim made from lightly woven fabric will provide good sun protection. You can wear a hat that covers your face, ears, and the back of your neck. You can wear hats made of canvas.8

12. Wearing Protective Clothing

Wear long-sleeve shirts, long pants, and long skirts. Use clothes made from lightly woven fabric as it will provide good sun protection.1

Also Read: How to Remove Wrinkles Under Eyes: Effective Treatments Explained

When to Seek Medical Help?

It is important to self-examine the skin once a month. In case of any new or changing spots or moles, you need to visit your health care provider and seek medical help as these might be signs of skin cancer.1,2

Also Read: Simple Home Remedies For Skin Whitening


Tanning is the skin’s response to UV exposure. The skin produces melanin to protect from damage caused due to UVB radiation. There is no such thing as a safe and healthy tan, and it does not make your skin glow. Home remedies are a convenient and safer way to get rid of tan. Saffron, green tea and coffee are some easily found products that make up for a good tan remedy. You can also protect your skin by limiting your sun exposure.

Also Read: Home Remedies For Dark Underarms

Frequently Asked Questions: 

What are the natural ways to remove skin tan?

Some natural remedies like saffron, green tea, coffee, aloe vera, beefsteak, grape seeds, and liquorice can be used to remove tan caused due to sun exposure. Saffron and liquorice have skin whitening properties that can help in tan removal.4,6,7

Is it safe to get artificial tanning?

No, it is not safe to get an artificial tan as it involves overexposure to UVA radiation. Overexposure to UVA radiation can cause severe skin damage and increase the chances of skin cancer. Tanning is a sign of skin damage, and it will not protect your skin from sunburn or other damage.1

Does tanning provide protection from sun damage?

No, getting a tan does not provide protection to skin from sunburn or other skin damage.3

Are there any health risks associated with tanning?

Tanning is the result of overexposure to ultraviolet radiation. There are several health risks associated with tanning, such as premature skin ageing, skin cancer, eye damage, and actinic keratosis (formation of thick and scaly patches of akin). It can also result in a weak immune system.1

Can tanning cause cancer?

Tanning itself does not cause cancer. Tanning is a sign of skin damage due to ultraviolet radiation. Skin cancer is a health risk associated with tanning. Overexposure to UV radiation can lead to skin cancer or melanoma.1

Also Read: Natural Home Remedies for Hyperpigmentation


  1. Tanning: MedlinePlus [Internet]. [cited 2022 Mar 30]. Available from: https://medlineplus.gov/tanning.html
  2. Sun’s effect on skin – Health Video: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia [Internet]. [cited 2022 Mar 30]. Available from: https://medlineplus.gov/ency/anatomyvideos/000125.htm
  3. The Risks of Tanning | FDA [Internet]. [cited 2022 Mar 30]. Available from: https://www.fda.gov/radiation-emitting-products/tanning/risks-tanning
  4. Kaur A, Gurjeet Singh T, Dhiman S, Arora S, Babbar R. NOVEL HERBS USED IN COSMETICS FOR SKIN AND HAIR CARE: A REVIEW. Vol. 20. 2020. Available from: https://www.semanticscholar.org/paper/NOVEL-HERBS-USED-IN-COSMETICS-FOR-SKIN-AND-HAIR-%3A-A-Kaur-Singh/ab3c9cdb988252358eb43a1abf69048f2c6892ec
  5. Fukushima Y, Takahashi Y, Kishimoto Y, Taguchi C, Suzuki N, Yokoyama M, et al. Consumption of Polyphenols in Coffee and Green Tea Alleviates Skin Photoaging in Healthy Japanese Women. Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology [Internet]. 2020 [cited 2022 Mar 30];13:165. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7020926/
  6. Cerulli A, Masullo M, Montoro P, Piacente S. Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra, G. uralensis, and G. inflata) and Their Constituents as Active Cosmeceutical Ingredients. Cosmetics 2022, Vol 9, Page 7 [Internet]. 2022 Jan 5 [cited 2022 Mar 30];9(1):7. Available from: https://www.mdpi.com/2079-9284/9/1/7/htm
  7. Surjushe A, Vasani R, Saple D. ALOE VERA: A SHORT REVIEW. Indian Journal of Dermatology [Internet]. 2008 Oct 1 [cited 2022 Mar 30];53(4):163. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2763764/
  8. Sun Safety | Skin Cancer | CDC [Internet]. [cited 2022 Mar 30]. Available from: https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/skin/basic_info/sun-safety.htm

Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional. Because of unique individual needs, the reader should consult their physician to determine the appropriateness of the information for the reader’s situation.



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