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a. a brownish colouring of the skin caused by the formation of the pigment melanin within the skin on exposure to the ultraviolet rays of the sun or a sunlamp
b. (as modifier): suntan oil



the darkening of human skin after exposure to ultraviolet radiation; such exposure causes an excess of the pigment melanin to be deposited in the surface layers.

A suntan develops gradually after repeated exposure to ultraviolet rays of low intensity. The deepest and longest-lasting tan results from prolonged exposure to sunlight; it often has an adverse effect on health (on the nervous, cardiovascular, and other systems). The extent and rapidity with which tanning takes place are not indicators of health.

Sensitivity to ultraviolet radiation varies from person to person, especially in children. Brunets with a swarthy skin tan more quickly than blonds or redheads with delicate, tender skin, which often burns on exposure to ultraviolet rays. Applying vegetable oils (nut, peach, and so forth) to skin speeds the tanning process and prevents the skin from drying out and, to some extent, from burning.

References in periodicals archive ?
Health and natural simplicity rather than wealth, status and sophistication were the first meanings and motivations of the suntan.
11 briefed the Commissioners on its proposed new mandatory rule requiring the use of child-resistant caps on cosmetic products such as baby oil and suntan lotion.
On the demand side, exporters and strategic planners focusing on beauty or make-up skin care preparations, sunscreen, suntan preparations, and manicure and pedicure preparations in Singapore face a number of questions.
USING suntan cream could lead to Alzheimer's disease, scientists fear.
But she's a tad jealous of boyfriend Capital FM DJ GREG BURNS' suntan after their hol last week.
Hayden was once dubbed "Bradman with a suntan", but now he's just got the suntan, Fox Sports reported.
SUNTAN lotion is being given free to homeless people at risk of getting burned by living outdoors.
Mancini, sporting long locks and a suntan, looked like he had stepped straight off the Milan catwalk in fetching check trousers and a blazer concealed under a designer overcoat.
Why do some people get a suntan and other people get sunburn?
Clear, colorless, and providing a non-greasy feel, the new Dow Corning Toray FZ-3196 Fluid can be used as a carrier for other ingredients or as a dispersing medium for hydrophobic powders and pigments in a wide range of personal care products including skin creams, lotions and gels, suntan lotions, makeup removers, facial cleansers, color cosmetics, and hair care products.
Applicable at all UK and EU airports, the new regulations permit passengers to carry on board such items as shampoo, toothpaste suntan lotions, perfumes, hair gel, mascara, lip gloss, soft drinks and shaving foam as long as they do not exceed 100ml (about four fluid ounces).
I question the effects of the chemicals in the suntan lotions slathered on kids today every time they go outside (which, with the advent of television and computer games, is much less frequently).