Here comes the sun! While most of us would agree that there’s something about a tan that helps us feel more confident, spending time outside this season and safely exposing the skin to sunlight can have a positive impact on our hormones and wellbeing, too. As we approach the official start of Summer on June 1st, we are talking about the importance of letting your skin see the sun this season to support hormone health. 

Whether going bare-legged at a BBQ, showing off your green finger in the garden or pulling out your sundresses for park strolls, exposing the skin to light can trigger the regulation of neurotransmitters and hormone production. This is because there are photoreceptors in the skin that can send signals to the brain, impacting the production and regulation of a multitude of hormones that affect our mood, cognition, stress levels, hunger and metabolism, whilst also maintaining the smooth-running of our body’s master clock: The Circadian Rhythm. 

confidence boost?

Giving the skin a natural golden glow can give you a little more confidence to bare your legs and expose more skin to the benefits of sunlight - but when it comes to tanning, it’s much safer to fake it.
Perfect legs skin miracle is an award-winning instant tanning serum that uses Natural Caramel and Arnica to even tone, bruises and blemishes, and give the skin a beautiful golden glow – in just 2 minutes.
Simply massage onto your legs (or any area on show!) building the depth of tan you desire and go, and when you’ve had enough, it washes off in the shower. No fuss, streaks or patches and a holiday-glow without the flight. 

brighter mornings for a better mood

On a neuroscientific level, getting outdoors and exposing the skin on our bodies to natural daylight triggers hormone release/ production. The skin has a direct link to the Hippocampus (the part of the brain that controls hormone function) and when exposed to UVB rays it signals to the brain to produce increased levels of serotonin and other stress response hormones, helping you feel calm and focused, as well as stimulating the synthesis of Vitamin D.
What’s so great about Vitamin D? This ‘super vitamin’ helps to promote cell growth and repair in our bodies – directly enhancing skin immunity and destroying the free-radicals that start to break down our skin structure and cause premature ageing, skin sagging, fine lines, and wrinkles. Increasing daylight exposure is especially important to our skin health post-winter when we’re likely (especially in the UK) in desperate need of sunshine and tend to be deficient.
If you find yourself instantly chirpier and have more get up and go when the sun is shining there’s a scientific reason for it. Various studies have shown that exposure to bright light triggers the release of dopamine, serotonin and endorphins. Dopamine is the neurotransmitter associated with pleasure, motivation and reward-seeking behaviour and serotonin is notorious for being responsible for a happy mood, but it does so much more, too. Morning light can enhance dopamine and serotonin levels, leading to better mood, sharper brain function, improved sleep, greater alertness and appetite and many other physiological processes.

rise and shine for a sharper mind

Taking a morning walk may not be top of your agenda with such a busy schedule, but the benefits of bright morning sunlight are proven to boost cognitive function and alertness, meaning prioritising catching some rays (and movement too!) could be just the tonic you need to get the job done.
There are many hormones responsible for better brain function, including norepinephrine and cortisol. Norepinephrine is involved in the body’s ‘fight or flight’ response and plays a role in attention, arousal and mood regulation and light exposure has been shown to influence the activity of neurons that produce it. While you may associate ‘fight or flight’ with danger, triggering this response can be extremely useful when you have an important task at hand. 
Cortisol is another stress hormone that is naturally highest in the morning, and it helps you to wake up and get moving, it’s also why you might find you do your best work first thing. Natural light in the morning can help synchronise the body’s Circadian Rhythm, which in turn regulates cortisol levels, reducing the risk of disruptions in the body’s stress response, promoting alertness and cognitive function throughout the day.

stress levels

While Norepinephrine and Cortisol are great for alertness, triggering these responses in the evening or at times when you are trying to relax has the opposite effect, causing you to feel stressed and anxious. Exposing yourself to artificial blue light (like the one’s secreted from your phone, TV or other digital devices) too late in the day can have an adverse effect on your sleep and mood, causing disturbances to your sleep quality and even sleep disorders. 

hunger & metabolism

If you’re someone who incorporates wellbeing practices into their routine, then you may find you’re also someone who gets hungry at the same time each day, has regular bowel movements and goes to sleep right on cue.
Our Circadian Rhythm controls these functions, and we can influence how strong and regular our body clocks are through multiple lifestyle factors, including light exposure. 
How light affects our hunger and metabolism depends on when we are exposed to it and the type of light it is. Some studies suggest that exposure to bright light, particularly in the morning, can increase the secretion of growth hormone (GH) from the pituitary gland. GH plays a crucial role in growth, cell regeneration, and metabolism. There is also some evidence that light can influence the production and regulation of thyroid hormones, which play a vital role in metabolism, energy regulation and various other physiological processes.
On the other hand, exposure to light at night (LAN) can negatively affect metabolism. Experiments using different wavelengths of light at night have indicated that they may have a specific impact on energy and metabolism. Exposure to LAN has also been shown to impact glucose homeostasis, and to be associated with an increased incidence of overweight, obesity, and atherosclerosis.
The takeaway? Soak up those morning rays and limit your exposure to light early evening onward – especially blue light from digital devices!


While most people know that we instinctively wind down for sleep when it’s dark, the connection between light and sleep is much more complex.
Light is one of the biggest influencing factors when it comes to how quickly we fall asleep, how long we sleep for and when we wake up. Getting out in bright morning light spikes our cortisol levels, giving your body a hit of nature’s caffeine and signaling to your brain that it’s time to wake up and get moving and further anchoring your Circadian Rhythm to that time.
This is the reason you may experience jet lag when traveling or struggle with a clock change, because your brain and body are used to waking and sleeping at a similar time each day. 
Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) is the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system, involved in regulating neuronal excitability and anxiety levels. Research suggests that exposure to natural light during the day has been associated with increased GABA levels, promoting relaxation and reducing anxiety. On the flip side, those living in environments with limited sunlight or with sleep disorders may lead to decreased GABA levels and higher levels of stress. 

You may be more familiar with another hormone that plays a crucial role in the sleep-wake cycle, melatonin. Our melatonin levels typically rise in the evening, signaling to the body that it's time to sleep.  Exposure to blue light (which commonly comes from our TVs, phones or laptops) in the evening can suppress melatonin production, disrupting the Circadian Rhythm and leading to sleep disturbances – which in turn may have potential long-term health issues.