The sun's rays are brightest and strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., so the best time to lay out and get a tan is between these hours. Searching the Internet for a UV index each day is a good way to determine the strength of the sun, and the U.S. EPA website is a good place to find this information.
Because the sun's rays can be harmful to the skin, the best and healthiest way to get a tanned appearance is to spend just a little time in the sun each day. Getting 15 to 20 minutes of sun each day can also provide positive health benefits as the sun is a natural source of vitamin D.
Using a base tanner is a great way to start the tanning process, and there are many brands available, including Banana Boat, Avon and Coppertone. Moisturizing the skin directly after exposure to the sun is also key for maintaining the tan and preventing peeling and other skin irritations.
Getting a sunburn can hurt and cause skin damage due to the changing of melanin in the skin. Therefore, it is important to check the skin carefully for any suspicious marks after each tan.