Female Asian friends laughing outdoors.

Is morning sun good for you? You may have heard conflicting ideas about whether you should be out during daylight hours. Some discourage it because of an aversion to developing a darker skin tone – an outdated notion. Meanwhile, others offer more reasonable concerns, like sunburn. Opinions vary regarding when you should be under the sun and how long you should stay out.

Much of the discussion around the dangers of sunlight has focused on excessive sun exposure. When UV rays penetrate the skin, they can damage DNA, destroy collagen fibers and vitamin A, speed up skin aging, or even lead to some cancers.

Despite these downsides, you shouldn’t avoid the sun altogether! A little sunshine can be extremely beneficial, especially in the early hours of the morning. You just have to make sure you’re being careful.

How to Enjoy the Benefits of Sun Exposure With Less Risk

There are many good reasons to soak up some rays. But to reap their benefits with minimal risks, you should take precautions. First, you need to know the right time of day and for how long you should be out in the sun. For reference, the sun is usually at its peak between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. You’re more likely to get sunburns when outside under harsh sunlight during these hours.

Now, how long should you be out? According to the , anywhere between 5-15 minutes of direct sun 2-3 times a week is enough to enjoy its vitamin D-boosting benefits. Avoid wearing long clothing so the sun can effectively penetrate your skin and produce the necessary Vitamin D.

It also partially depends on your skin type and natural skin color. For example, people with fair skin can be vs. those with darker skin. It’s best to plan your exposure with these considerations in mind. 

But if you plan to sunbathe for longer than 15 minutes, do remember to apply . Layer on POND'S UV Bright Sunscreen at least half an hour before going out. It will help protect you against the negative effects of UV rays on the skin, including , dullness, and . As a bonus, its brightening properties give skin a healthy-looking glow.

For all-over protection, try the Vaseline Healthy Bright SPF24 PA++ Sun + Pollution Protection Body Lotion. In addition to SPF, it also contains niacinamide and petroleum jelly to keep skin supple and bright as it protects against sun damage.

What else can the right amount of sun exposure do for you? Here are a few of its known benefits:

Benefit #1: It Helps You Sleep Better

When it gets dark, your body releases a hormone called melatonin to help you fall asleep. That explains why you tend to feel sleepy after the sun sets, usually within two hours. Unfortunately, the interferences of modern technology – such as exposure to blue light from laptop or smartphone screens – can negatively .

Exposure to morning light can tell your body when to increase and decrease melatonin levels. It also helps regulate your circadian rhythm, the internal process known as the “sleep-wake cycle.” As a result, you’re at a lower risk of developing insomnia, seasonal affective disorder, and PMS symptoms. Overall, better sleep is a win for your emotional well-being.

Benefit #2: It Can Help You Shed Extra Pounds

Having poor or inconsistent sleep patterns is linked to weight gain. Sleep experts have theorized that not getting enough sleep that signal when you get hungry. That means better sleep can help you stave off excess pounds.

Additionally, have shown that the right amount of morning sun can lead to possible weight loss. In the example, women with obesity who spent 45 minutes in the sun reduced their body fat and appetite.

Benefit #3: It Can Make You Healthier

One of the most crucial benefits of catching sun rays is boosting vitamin D levels in your body, which is triggered by sunlight. Most cases of vitamin D deficiency happen because some people aren’t spending enough time outdoors. Vitamin D helps the body retain calcium and phosphorus to build strong bones. The vitamin also helps improve immunity and manage infections, cancer cell growth, and inflammation.

Getting some morning sun can also help you live longer. A that followed 30,000 Swedish women found that those who spent more time in the sun lived six months to two years longer.

Are you looking for an easy and accessible way to take care of yourself? Nothing beats sunshine. The best part: it’s free for all. Just wake up bright and early to enjoy the morning sun on your skin!