This Is Why I Keep My Face Out of the Sun

The sun—that big, beautiful, bright ball of light—can cause our skin some major damage. Thankfully, I learned that at a young age, so I've managed to stay healthy and steer clear of sun damage.

I've obviously had my run-ins with the occasional sunburn (who hasn't?), but for the most part, I've kept my face pretty protected. And let me tell you—it shows. At the ripe age of 25, I have no signs of sun damage on my face, just a few freckles that come out to play during the summer. I also never breakout. Okay, that's a bit dramatic, I get the occasional pimple, but it's very rare. I'm convinced I have clear skin because of my decision to stay away from the sun. Obviously genetics play a role, but I like to think I'm making a difference, too.

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I spoke with Patricia Boland, dermatologist at Colorescience, and she gave me some super useful insight into the dangers of tanning your face:

"There are two wavelengths that the sun gives off which are damaging to your skin—UVA and UVB rays. UVA rays penetrate the deeper layers of the skin. They work by stimulating the production of free radicals, causing oxidative stress and in the long-term, DNA damage. UVB rays penetrate only the outer layers of the skin and provide the energy your skin needs to make Vitamin D. UVB rays are linked to sunburn and can cause the skin to thicken temporarily."

Keeping that information in mind, it got me wondering, is it weird that my face is always a few shades lighter than the rest of my body? In short, yes, but there are so many healthy solutions to achieving tan skin that won't cause damage. After all, I still want that sun-kissed Kendall Jenner look.

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One great option is self-tanning. It's the perfect way for us fair-skinned girls to maintain a glowy-looking tan. I spoke with Lori Braun, founder of TanTowel, and this is what she had to say about self-tanning products:

"You absolutely do not have to subject your skin to the sun to enjoy a nice glow—and you shouldn't. A good self-tanner can give you a natural-looking bronze, and no one will be the wiser. When I go on vacation I sit in my cabana and apply a bit of self-tanner each day. By the time it's over, I'm just as tan as my friends who laid out all week! I promise, your skin will love you for staying away from the sun, and you'll be so glad later in life."

One of my fave self-tanning brands at the moment is Haute Bronze. I've been wearing their products for the last week and it looks so natural! I'm definitely adding their Sun Drops to my daily routine.

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Another option that I use every day is makeup—duh. Whether I'm going for a natural look or full-on contour, it's a healthy solution to looking tan while staying out of the sun's harsh rays. Ofra Gaito of Ofra Cosmetics paints a clear picture:

"Tanning your face can result in sun damage that may not truly show for many years, and up to 20 years later in some cases. Damage to skin that gets exposed to the sun can result in premature wrinkles, freckles, and pigmentation."

A great product from Ofra Cosmetics is their Americano Bronzer. Use it with their Rodeo Drive Highlighter, and you'll look like you just came back from a tropical getaway.

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Whether you plan on staying au natural or will finally start to use sunscreen, you'll still be rocking a bathing suit. HERE are some cute captions for your bikini Instagram photos.