With summer quickly approaching, it’s finally time to get out those bathing suits and enjoy all that the sweet heat and beach days have to offer. However, with ‘sunsational’ summer fun comes the risk of sunburns, heatstroke, and, of course, the always annoying and nearly impossible to escape farmer’s tan.
But, what if getting rid of a farmer’s tan was as easy as knowing how to and taking the right precautions to avoid them altogether in the future? This is the main focus of this article. By eliminating and avoiding farmer’s tans, you can finally sunbathe in style and never worry about those pesky tan lines again.
There are many ways to get rid of a farmer’s tan. All of these methods center around exfoliating your dead skin and balancing out your tan using natural and specific exfoliators regularly. Natural exfoliators include lemons, loofahs, potatoes, milk baths, aloe vera, and sugar scrubs. You can also use man-made exfoliators and moisturizers made to counteract uneven tans specifically.
With the right exfoliator, you can simply scrub away your dead skin regularly and your farmer’s tan will surely disappear. For stronger farmer’s tans, you can also always apply spray tan to the less tanned areas of your body and wait until your body balances its tan out naturally. However, to learn the right way to exfoliate so as to not damage your skin further as well as the best man-made exfoliators on the market, it all begins with understanding what a farmer’s tan actually is and how to care for your skin as summer approaches.
Read on to learn more about farmer’s tans, why they happen, how to avoid them, and what to do in order to get rid of them moving forward.
- What is a Farmer’s Tan?
- Can You let Farmer’s Tans go Away Naturally?
- Do Farmers’ Tans Damage Your Skin?
- What are the Best Ways to Avoid Getting Farmer’s Tans?
- How Often Should You Exfoliate Your Skin?
- What is the Best Way to Exfoliate Your Skin?
- The Best Man-Made Exfoliants
- Takeaway – When Getting Rid of a Farmer’s Tan
What is a Farmer’s Tan?
A farmer’s tan is essentially the result of spending too much time in direct sunlight with a short-sleeved shirt. Farmer’s tans can also be found on your legs when you wear shorts in direct sunlight as well.
The main reason for a farmer’s tan is the UV light that penetrates the top layers of your skin causing your body to produce melanin to avoid further burning in the future. When wearing clothing, the UV light can’t penetrate your clothes which leads to these uneven tan marks.
The term ‘farmer’s tan’ comes from the stereotype that farmers were the most likely to get these tans by being out in the sun all day in standard short-sleeved work shirts. However, any person can get a farmer’s tan by simply wearing clothing in some areas while letting other areas tan unevenly.
You may also hear these tans referred to as ‘golfer’s tans’ or ‘tennis tans’ as these are other individuals highly likely to have these types of tans during the summer season.
Can You let Farmer’s Tans go Away Naturally?
As with any tan or even sunburn, you can most certainly let your farmer’s tan go away naturally. On average, a farmer’s tan takes about two weeks to go away but you must be careful to not let your other unexposed skin lighten as well. If this happens, the difference in color will still remain.
While some individuals recommend getting a spray tan on the rest of your body until the farmer’s tan balances itself out, spray tans can be costly and it may not be guaranteed that the tan colors will match even once you are done.
The main reason why letting your farmer’s tan naturally go away isn’t recommended is because the ways to get rid of a farmer’s tan are incredibly easy and good for your skin anyhow. When your skin burns or tans, you damage the skin cells.
However, by exfoliating your skin and moisturizing it regularly, you can still naturally remove your farmer’s tan while also doing so in a faster manner and helping nourish your skin as well.
Do Farmers’ Tans Damage Your Skin?
According to the NFU Mutual’s Risk Management Service, “Too much exposure to sunlight is harmful to your skin. A tan is a sign that the skin has already been damaged. The damage is caused by ultraviolet (UV) rays in sunlight…
If work keeps you outdoors for a long time your skin could be exposed to more sun than is healthy for you. Farmworkers, in particular, could be at risk from UV…In the short term, even mild reddening of the skin from sun exposure is a sign of damage.
Sunburn can blister the skin and cause it to peel. In the long term, too much sun speeds up the aging of the skin, making it leathery, mottled and wrinkled. The most serious effect is an increased chance of developing skin cancer.”
With this said, any type of tan can damage your skin and, over time, lead to an increased risk of skin cancer as well. This is why it is recommended that you moisturize, exfoliate, and use the proper sunscreen no matter what you plan on doing in the sun. Even if your farmer’s tan is only caused by one day at the beach, it’s simply not worth the risk of causing long-term damage to your skin’s health. That’s why preventative measures are truly best so as to never get the farmer’s tan to begin with.
What are the Best Ways to Avoid Getting Farmer’s Tans?
There are many ways to avoid getting a farmer’s tan but the top 5 ways include:
Using suntan lotion with an SPF of 50 or higher
While most people tend to purchase subpar suntan lotions and expect them to work the same, it may be best to simply stick with the higher SPF sunscreens even if they’re a bit more pricey. The difference in price could quite literally be the difference between healthy skin and skin cancer.
Avoid being outside for long between the hours of 10 AM to 4 PM
Between the hours of 10 AM and 4 PM, the sun is at its strongest. This means that your skin will likely experience more UV light during these time periods and tan as well as burn far quicker. It’s recommended that you only spend a few hours in the sun during the summertime each day and, during these time periods, it’s best to use shade to your benefit as well.
Wear the right clothing in the sun
Although we rarely consider what we wear during the summer months, clothing is one of the best ways to avoid farmer’s tans altogether. This is why your tan lines appear in the first place. Because UV light can’t penetrate clothing, it is recommended that you wear long sleeves and other clothing to protect your skin in the sun.
However, this isn’t always possible when the heat is too strong, and this is where UV protective clothing comes in handy. UV protective clothing is thin clothing designed for summer fun while also protecting your skin along the way. It may be beneficial to get some of this clothing whether you work in the sun all day or simply plan to have some summer fun as well.
Utilize shade when outside
Although it may sound pretty obvious, using an umbrella, canopy, or even a floppy hat in the sun all help you to protect your skin from UV light. This is how you can still have fun in the sun without damaging your skin or getting uneven tans in the process.
Exfoliate and moisturize your skin regularly
Lastly, exfoliating and moisturizing your skin are essential to preventing sun damage long term. The exfoliation and moisturization of your skin help it to stay strong even in direct sunlight. This reduces both the melanin your body produces as well as the damage or death of your skin cells.
How Often Should You Exfoliate Your Skin?
According to Healthline, “Most experts advise that you exfoliate two to three times per week — as long as your skin can handle it. Chemical exfoliants tend to be fine to use more regularly.”
The main reason why exfoliation is recommended regularly is that your top skin cells regularly die but don’t just fall off your body like they should always. This leads to dead skin buildup that can damage your healthy skin and lead to uneven tans and visible skin damage. However, when exfoliating your skin, you will still want to moisturize your healthy skin after and use a cooling gel or lotion to calm your skin after the fact. Aloe vera is highly useful in these situations as it naturally cools and reduces skin damage.
What is the Best Way to Exfoliate Your Skin?
When exfoliating, you will want to first find the right exfoliator for your skin type. Natural exfoliators like sugar scrubs or loofahs are great for more sensitive skin types while man-made exfoliants such as CeraVe or Glycolic Acid 7% toning solution are more attune with rougher or more damaged skin types.
When exfoliating, you will want to make sure you do not have a sunburn. If you do, you must first wait until the sunburn is gone and all that is left is your farmer’s tan. At this point, simply use either a round sponge or a large brush to apply the exfoliant and massage into the skin in a circular motion. It is recommended that your exfoliant is only on your skin for about 30-60 seconds and then rinse off with cold or lukewarm water.
The Best Natural Exfoliants
There are all kinds of natural exfoliants and moisturizers out there, but the most recommended ones for farmer’s tans are:
- Milk baths
- Aloe vera
- Sugar scrubs
All of these, when applied to the skin regularly after getting an uneven or unwanted tan, are sure to help reduce your tan and exfoliate your skin for healthy and velvety skin quality moving forward.
The Best Man-Made Exfoliants
While natural exfoliators may be a bit more healthy for your skin, man-made exfoliators can also be incredibly useful, easy to find, and great for more damage or darker uneven tans. The best man-made exfoliants on the market at the moment include:
Each of these six exfoliants above is perfect for any price range and offers the best uneven tan reduction support on the market. They are guaranteed to rid you of your unwanted farmer’s tan in no time flat and prevent them from moving forward.
Understanding the Importance of Daily Skin Care
Daily skincare is crucial not just so you can look and feel good but so you can also help your body feel its best and be its best for decades to come. Using moisturizers daily and exfoliating regularly help your skin to reduce uneven tanning, stay healthy and stronger for longer, and even reduce aging and wrinkles as well.
Whether you are worried about a farmer’s tan or skin cancer, the answer to your problems is caring for your skin effectively and regularly. With a great daily skincare routine, you can enjoy your summers and days in the sun without stressing about the aftermath in the slightest.
Takeaway – When Getting Rid of a Farmer’s Tan
In the end, the main thing to keep in mind when dealing with a farmer’s tan is that these are not permanent tans, they can easily be eliminated with daily exfoliation and moisturization, and they can also be avoided entirely with the right clothing and sunscreen when in direct sunlight.
All it takes to get rid of this unsightly tanning fiasco is a bit of forethought, skincare, consideration when in the sun, and the right outfit for any summer adventure. With these simple tips and tricks above, you can focus less on your uneven tanning fears and more on the beautiful sunny weather that makes this season so spectacular.
My name is Keren Tayler. I am a work-at-home mama to three lovely girls, Sarah + Rachel + Hannah. I have been blogging for the last 5 years. I worked for other mom blogs, did hundreds of product reviews and buyers’ guides. Prior to that, I was a staff accountant at a big accounting firm. Needless to say, researching and numbers are my passion. My goal is to be an informative source for any topic that relates to mom’s life and homemaking.