Hardly any of us are satisfied with our own skin tone. If we are Indians, we are spending lacs of rupees on ‘fair and lovely’ creams to lighten our skin tones, on the flip side of the coin, if we belong to ice-cold western countries; we are spending equally high amounts of money for buying tan-shade makeup products to darken our extra fair skin tone. 

But unless you are a foreigner, or you have done it voluntarily, tanning of your skin, especially on the face is something we all want to run away from. But sometimes, we cannot really prevent ourselves from going out in the sun. We all are too busy in our work and life to stay indoors all the time. And as long as we step out in the boiling streets of India, we end up tanning our precious skin. 

Removing tanning from arms, legs or hands is yet easier, but when it comes to your face, you really need to be cautious about the methods or products you are using. 

So here is an article based on our research and opinions of a few skin experts on the methods to remove tanning from our face. This article may also be helpful if you are a North Indian who has just returned from a nice trip to Goa!

What is tanning?

According to the Oxford dictionary, tan refers to turning of our skin color into golden brown due to exposure to the sun and heat. In simple words, tanning of the skin is a situation where in the colour of our skin is darkened. Usually, it is due to the ultra-violet radiations of the sun, but in certain cases, it is done voluntarily by artificial sources of excessive heat like tanning lamps. 

Ways to remove tan from face:

1. Sandalwood

We all love the rejuvenating aroma of the Hindu temples. That aroma is usually of sandal powder or a sandal incense stick. But did we know that applying that sandal tilak on our forehead, between the brows, not only helps us stay calm and patient, but also sandalwood exhibits some marvelous benefits for our skin.

If the fragrance of sandalwood is your favorite too, this is the best solution to naturally remove tan from your face. Make an adequately thick sandal paste and apply it overnight, before going to sleep and wash the face thoroughly in the morning. 

If it is difficult for you to sleep like that, you can use the properties of sandalwood in an alternative way. You can apply sandalwood powder with a little amount of honey for 12 to15 minutes at any time of the day.

2. Honey with lemon juice

Why do you think we call our loved ones as ‘honey’? It is because honey is something excessively sweet with endless benefits and almost no side-effects. It possesses a long list of medicinal properties and health benefits. So, children love honey for its sweet taste while women love it for its benefits to their skin. 

Honey, when coupled with proportionate amount of freshly squeezed lemon juice can work wonders to lighten your tanned skin tone, if it is applied for 30 minutes regularly.

3. Cucumber extract

Whenever we women fantasize about pampering ourselves, we imagine a picture where we are laying carefree with a branded face pack on our face and a nicely cut, round and cold pair of cucumber on our beautiful closed eyes. But cucumber has a lot more to contribute to the skin care world. 

Grate a fresh seasonal cucumber and extract its juice. Apply that juice without mixing another ingredient with a small cotton pad or a ball on your tanned facial skin by gently patting. Do not rub or massage too much, just let the cucumber stay and show its magic. 

4. Tan removing face wash

We are the ladies of the twenty first century, so we can find a cosmetic product for almost any skin requirement. So, of course there are numerous products available out there, which are specially manufactured to remove tan from our face. 

We recommend you the following Face Wash to be used regularly for faster tan removal.


Wash your face thoroughly with the recommended face wash twice every day to see results, follow the same with application of a regular cold crème that you usually use.

5. Turmeric

Why do we do ‘haldi’ ceremony in our Indian weddings, this is because in the older times when cosmetics were not a part of the waves of trends, things like turmeric paste or traditional mud paste (fuller’s earth or multani mitti) were used in the place of branded face packs to make our skin look glowing. So, keeping the custom alive, we still apply turmeric pack to the bride and groom to make them look fair and radiant on their big day.

So there is a home remedy to learn from this custom, we can use turmeric paste complemented with gram flour in it to make a nice thick face pack to remove tan from our face. We can add a few drops of rose water to that pack for a perfect texture.

6. Face Pack

More than need, females these days apply face packs out of fondness. They do not actually analyze the type of face pack they need to apply and search about the products they are using. But you don’t need to get confused after reading this. 

You can trust us by using the product we are recommending you:


This face pack is easily available on Amazon and it is known for its effective tan removing ingredients like multani mitti, juices of fresh fruits and lemon. Apply the face pack on a regular basis and leave it for 15 to 20 minutes followed by thorough rinsing of the face with cold water. 

7. Tan removing massage cream

Going down the steps of the process of facial, massaging is the most important and technical step. The way of massage can determine the overall results of the facial. So changing the type and quality of massage cream can make a big difference. 

We recommend you the following massage cream:


This cream does not involve any chemicals as such. The fruits used as ingredients are not artificial and give our skin a soothing treat. 

8. Tan Removing scrub

Scrubbing is the best technique to deeply cleanse the pits and pores of our skin. Scrubbing is useful in exfoliating, removing dead skin cells and in fact removing tan as well. If the scrub used is rightly chosen and meant for the purpose of tan removal specifically, the results must be visible. We recommend you the following for the same:


Papaya is rich in health and healing properties so regular scrubbing with Biotique scrub unclogs the skin pores and exfoliates the dead cells and lightens your tanned skin tone. 

9. Potato Juice

Usually we take potato for granted by adding it as an auxiliary to almost every vegetable in India but the starch within this round little brown veggie really possesses some wonderful qualities. Potato is the first thing that the people who are aiming to reduce weight kick out from their diet chart. But it is not necessary that what is fatty is useless. 

Grate the potato and extract the juice to apply it all over your tanned facial skin till the juice dries up. If that sticky weird thing irritates you, you can also place small little patches of raw or boiled potato for a while all over the skin. The starch of the potato will help you to lighten the skin tone and remove the tan. 


In the first place, we must look for prevention rather than cure for tanning. I cannot forget my sister and I laughing on our mother for packing three different bottles of sunscreen for three of us in our suitcases for a trip to Goa. But on the last day, we all three were laughing on the darkened skin tone of our Dad who does not apply any sort of creams. 

It is not at all easy to remove the tan from face, specifically. Though these methods and home remedies may help to some extent, but one must not expect any instant or assured results in short time. 

But still don’t lose hope and try out these easy ways to enjoy the sun with a care-free mind. Happy sunbathing!