Tanning under ultraviolet rays without eye protection can leave you with lasting eye damage, even after one-time use. Eye protection is key to maintaining healthy eyes, all while getting a bronze tan. However, sometimes eye protection can cause raccoon eyes. This is the term given to the white circles left around your eyes where your tanning goggles were placed, while the rest of your body is beautifully bronzed.
Nobody wants to walk around looking like a raccoon, especially after getting a beautiful looking tan. Luckily, it can be covered up or avoided completely with a few easy to follow steps and precautions that you can practice on your own.
How To Cover Raccoon Eyes – 3 Easy Steps
If you are stuck with raccoon eyes after a tanning session at a salon, you might find yourself freaking out a bit. Don’t worry, with some simple makeup essentials you will be able to cover up the lighter areas left around your eyes and you will be able to blend them in to match the rest of your beautiful new tan.
Applying your makeup properly will be essential to making your tan look natural, without the raccoon eye statement look that you definitely were not going for.
1. Find the Right Color Foundation
In order to cover up the lighter areas under your eyes, you will need to match the color of your foundation to the color of your new tan.
A good waterproof foundation will be able to hide the lighter spots around your eyes. You will need to use a shade lighter than the color on the rest of your body as the area under your eyes is usually lighter than the rest of your face.
Some waterproof foundations can be quite pricey, but it is actually worth spending the money to buy a decent one. It will probably last longer and you will achieve much better coverage than a cheaper, watered-down foundation.
DermaBlend is my favorite foundation because it has SPF 25 and is lightweight, blendable, and comes in a shade suited for everyone.
2. Apply Foundation
The correct application will mean that the foundation looks very natural and blended in with your new tan. Here is the correct way to apply the foundation to cover raccoon eyes:
- Dot the foundation around the eye.
- Pat the foundation down and blend the liquid in using your finger.
- Slowly expand the area by rubbing and circling towards the outside of the lighter circle.
- Leave the foundation for two minutes in order for it to dry and set correctly.
- Do not pull or rub the skin too hard, it is a delicate area and you could cause damage to your skin.
By blending the foundation towards the outside of the lighter circle, you will be creating a very natural, even tone. There should be no visible color difference left if these steps are followed correctly, and your raccoon eyes will be completely covered and gone. It doesn’t have to be too much of a chore if you are used to applying make-up every day, you just need to get into the habit of focussing on the raccoon eyes.
3. Apply Powder
Dusting loose powder over the foundation will help seal and set the foundation. It creates a more matte look and will help the cover look more natural.
You can choose between a translucent powder and one that is similar to the shade of your tan. Both a translucent and a colored powder can be used all over your face, so it is up to what you prefer to use. I personally love Anastasia Beverly Hills loose setting powder.
The benefit of translucent powder is that you can still use it even after losing your tan. A good powder brush will set the powder evenly and not too heavy on the skin.
How to Avoid Raccoon Eyes From Tanning
If you are not too keen on having to apply foundation when you want to cover up the lighter circles around your eyes, there are a few ways to avoid getting raccoon eyes in the first place. In no way must you avoid wearing eye protection, but there are ways to get around the lighter circles caused by the very important tanning goggles.
1. Reposition Your Tanning Goggles
While under the ultraviolet rays in the tanning bed, you can keep repositioning your eye goggles, moving them around to sit on different areas around your eyes. You should keep your eyes covered at all times, but the outside of the goggles can be moved every so often so that the different areas around the eyes can be tanned.
If you are using tanning goggles with an elastic band, be sure to move this around often as well. You really don’t want to be left with a tan line on either side of your face.
Most eye goggles can be placed on the eyes without the band, so just check with your tanning salon to see what options they have available.
2. Disposable Eye Wear
Instead of using the tanning goggles that are on offer at the tanning salon, you can opt to bring along your own disposable eyewear. Some tanning salons may offer these, but they might come with an additional charge, so be sure to check beforehand.
Disposable goggles can only be used once, but they are more hygienic than using shared goggles. The disposable goggles are adhesive stickers that are folded into a cone and placed over the eyes. The surface area around the eyes is smaller, so there is more skin being tanned in the tanning bed.
Types of Tanning Goggles
A good pair of tanning goggles can help you prevent the prevalence of raccoon eyes. They either cover less area around the eye, or they can be repositioned to open up different areas to be tanned during your tanning session.
Find out from your tanning salon if they have your favorite pair of tanning goggles available, if not then it is worthwhile to buy your own and take them along with you when you go for a tan. There are so many options available online; you just need to spend some time looking for what you want and what suits you. Here are some of the different types of tanning goggles available for you to use.
Some tanning goggles come with straps to keep the goggles securely in place. The upside is that the goggles will be held firmly in place while you tan, even when you turn around in the bed. The downside is that the side strips and strap over the bridge of your nose will cause tan lines. These are less than ideal, but some goggles have adjustable straps that allow you to loosen them, moving the strap around while tanning hoping to avoid tan lines.
Adhesive goggles are a one-use option for tanning. They stick on your eyelids and form a cone shape. They minimize tan lines and cover a small surface area around the eyes. The adhesive eye protection stickers allow you to move around in the tanning bed and stand up afterward. They are generally more hygienic than reusable goggles, especially if you are sharing the goggles with other customers at the tanning salon.
Many people opt for this option as there are no tan lines left on the side of the face. The piece that joins the goggles over the bridge of the nose is high so there won’t be any tan lines over the bridge of the nose. You are able to open your eyes in the tanning bed when wearing the goggles, as long as they have the ultraviolet protection lenses. The problem, however, is that with no straps, you can’t really move around much. You will have to manually keep the goggles in place when moving around in the tanning bed and you can’t lie on your stomach with them.
Soft Pod Goggles
Soft pod goggles are comfortable to wear for extended periods, but usually, they do not have straps which restrict your movement in the tanning bed. You will have to keep the goggles in place on your own when moving around.
How Ultraviolet Damages Your Eyes
It cannot be stressed enough how important it is to protect your eyes when tanning, either in a tanning bed or outside in the sun. Closing your eyes in a tanning bed isn’t enough to protect your eyes from the rays, your eyelids are only very thin skin covering your eyes, and the ultraviolet rays can pass through this thin skin to still damage your eyes.
You need proper eye protection to prevent the ultraviolet rays from doing damage. Tanning beds can expose your eyes to more than 100 times the ultraviolet radiation than the sun.
Damage done to the eyes can be temporary to permanent, and can be very severe if serious damage is done.
Photokeratitis is a temporary condition. It is considered to being a sunburn on the eyes. It can cause pain, tearing and swelling. Vision usually becomes hazy and the irritation can feel as if there is sand or dirt in the eye. Eye drops or a topical solution which is prescribed by a doctor can usually repair the eyes from the sunburn caused, as well as soothe the symptoms and irritation.
A pinguecula is a small growth that starts as a yellow spot or bumps found on the conjunctiva. It is usually found on the side of the eye nearest to the nose. It is a deposit of fat, protein or calcium. If left untreated, it can grow to become a ptygeria. Surgery is only needed if eye drops do not remove the pingueculae and if it grows further to become a pterygium. It can be caused as a result of ultraviolet damage to the eyes, leading to irritation and reddening of the eye.
A pterygium is a small growth on the conjunctiva or mucous membrane that covers the white part of the eye and the cornea. The growth is benign and noncancerous but can cause discomfort. It is shaped like a wedge and is visible to the naked eye. It can usually be treated with eye drops prescribed by a doctor, but surgery might be needed if it does not go away with eye drops.
Cataracts can be caused by exposure to the sun or ultraviolet rays from tanning beds. It isn’t just caused by old age as many people think. Cataracts can cause clouding of the eyes or yellowing of the eyes. It affects vision and often makes it very difficult to see clearly. Eventually, vision may be depleted severely and colors might even become distorted as well. There is surgery available to have cataracts removed, and surgery is usually done weeks apart if needed in both eyes. Surgery is usually done when vision has degenerated to a point where it is difficult to function.
Indoor tanning without proper eye protection can be a factor in the onset of macular degeneration. It is the gradual damage of the eyes and can reduce vision greatly. It starts off with blurred or reduced vision, which then worsens over time. It is an incurable disease and the effects cannot be reversed once they have set in. Ultraviolet rays from tanning beds can definitely play a role in macular degeneration if protection is not used.
Depending on where you go to get your tan done, your salon might not be able to provide you with goggles that help prevent raccoon eyes. You might need to take along your own disposable goggles or rather deal with the raccoon eyes by using foundation and powder to cover it up after your tanning session.
Whatever you choose to do, remember that having raccoon eyes are better than having damage to your eyes. The goggles you use to protect your eyes from the harmful ultraviolet radiation do work; simply closing your eyes does not cut it.
There options out there to avoid raccoon eyes or to help deal with them once you have them; you just have to choose what is best for you and go from there!