This one is obvious, but some people don’t realize how quickly the skin tans, and the more you tans, the more it directly affects skin health at the same time. The skin begins to show the appearance of “tan” when the melanocyte cells in the epidermis layer of your skin begin to produce a darker tone.
As previously stated, the melanocyte cells in the epidermis layer of the skin is what gives the appearance of a tan. The lower level of the epidermis also acts as a protector against UV exposure. So as you tan, the top layer of the epidermis begins to thicken as the bottom layer pushes the cells up, like cells that come to the defense like armor, in a sense. So as your skin darkens, you are making your skin tougher, literally. This is why some people who tan regularly start to have a tanned skin type, both in touch and appearance.
We all know that it is quite common for many people to experience sunburn while tanning. If you have the type of skin that burns easily in the sun, then it is basically a guarantee that you are experiencing skin damage with every red spot on your skin. Most of the time, sunburns are mild and will heal in a few days to a week. But if you have a really nasty case of sunburn, you could actually get second degree burns. If this is the case, your skin can burn even under the top layer of skin, the epidermis. The dermis level can be severely damaged and the skin can begin to blister and crust over, and even appear moist. If your sunburn is this drastic, it could take several weeks to heal.