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Fitzpatrick Skin Types and How they React to the Sun

Every skin type has different characteristics and reacts differently to various factors, including sunlight. Back in 1975, the Fitzpatrick skin type classification was created. It breaks down skin types according to the amount of pigment and how it reacts to sun exposure. Knowing this is a great way to help prevent sun damage.

Skin Type 1

  • Ivory skin color
  • Light blue, light gray or light green eyes
  • Natural red or light blonde hair
  • Always freckles when exposed to the sun. Skin burns and peels and doesn’t tan.

Skin Type 2

  • Fair or pale skin color
  • Blue, gray or green eyes
  • Natural blond hair
  • Freckles usually appear after being exposed to the sun. Skin typically burns and peels and is not easily tanned.

Skin Type 3

  • Fair to beige skin color, with golden undertones
  • Hazel or light brown eyes
  • Dark blonde or light brown hair
  • Freckles might appear when exposed to the sun. Skin burns on occasion and sometimes gets tanned.

Skin Type 4

  • Olive or light brown skin color
  • Dark brown eyes
  • Natural dark brown hair
  • Doesn’t freckle when exposed to the sun. Skin rarely gets burnt and tans often.

Happy woman with beach hat

Skin Type 5

  • Dark brown skin color
  • Dark brown to black eyes
  • Natural dark brown to black hair
  • Rarely freckles when exposed to the sun. Always tans and never burns.

Skin Type 6

  • Deeply pigmented dark brown to darkest brown skin color
  • Brownish black eyes
  • Natural black hair
  • Never freckles when exposed to the sun. Always tans darkly and never burns


  • Always use sunscreen. Preferably SPF 30 or higher for skins types 1 and 2 and SPF 15 or higher for skin types 3 to 6.
  • Try to look for shade when you’re out in the sun and limit your sun exposure
  • Protect your face with a hat and your eyes with UV-blocking sunglasses
  • If you’re going to be exposed to the sun for long periods, use protective clothing.


Is your skin sun exposure friendly? Spray tans, like the hand-held custom spray tan or the Mystic tan, are an excellent solution for those who want an even, natural-looking tan, quickly and without the hassle of regular under-the-sun tanning. There are always options. It’s just a matter of knowing where to look 😉