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Thread: Is the Ability to Tan a Germanic 'Trait'?

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    Is the Ability to Tan a Germanic 'Trait'?

    Is the ability to tan a Germanic 'trait'? I recently just got back from holiday and noticed that Germans and Dutch tan very well, also lots of Scandinavians tan very well but dont know why they get portrayed as having milk bottle skin? I find British people to tan the least, could it be because of different DNA? Keltic?

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    Senior Member Aelfgar's Avatar
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    I think it's a general European trait. It's just that the 'burning' type of skin is most common in the British Isles and seems to be linked with red hair which is most frequent in Wales, northern England, Scotland and Ireland. But I've known people with black hair who burn easily too. My skin tone is averagely white for England and I tan quite well.

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    Some would argue yes, although to be fair, Germanics have a diverse array of phenotypes and skin types. As far as I know, it is generally believed that the "British lobster" phenotype and particularly the inability to tan has been inherited from the Celts. The Irish, Scottish, Welsh, some English, Cornish, Manx and Bretons are known to typically burn. On certain skin color charts, this type of skin tone even bears the name "Celtic" or "Irish", as it is often accompanied by freckles and/or reddish hair.

    For example, this chart is from the Irish skin foundation:



    Type 1 on this chart would be the stereotypical Celtic/Irish look. Ginger hair, pale to very fair skin and freckles. Here are some examples:

    Irish:







    Scottish:





    Welsh:



    The Irish are often considered the palest people on the planet in terms of skin color, even irrespective of hair or eye color. Example of dark-haired Irish woman with typical skin tone:



    Skin types 1 and 2 account for 76% of their population, according to the Irish Medical journal of science published in 1997. This is more than twice the average for Northern Europe.

    Type 2 through 4 (on other scales 3) would be found among Germanics, Type 2 and 3 being common in Scandinavia and Northern Europe (Swedes, in particular, are known to tan well and quite nicely, this is typically Type 3), Type 3 and 4 being common in Central, Western Europe and the periphery areas. Type 4 is usually the Mediterranean type, olive skin. Here is another chart:



    Some examples of the "Swedish" tan:

    Karolina Kluft is a good example how even the naturally blonde and Nordic Swedes can achieve a golden brown tan:



    Swedish women:



    Vlogger, I believe:



    Another extreme case, Dr. Mikael Sandström, the "tan doctor":



    Naturally, with the prevalence of tanning lotions and sunbeds, nowadays it is hard to tell what is natural and what is cosmetically modified. And of course, a Germanic can have a "Celtic" type of skintone.
    Last edited by Juthunge; Sunday, August 5th, 2018 at 03:26 PM. Reason: Fixed broken picture link of the Irish woman.

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    The first time or two out in the sun I seem to become a lobster, then it tans. My face however always remains red even in winter. My sister calls it my "Irish face with green eyes". But now living by the water and being in the boat fishing most mornings, ( coming in as soon as the heat begins, as it kicks my butt) I am sun kissed and noticing how the natural intake of Vit D makes me feel stronger, even with my health issues.
    I do not care if I were pale white, I am White and very proud to be such, but I do carry a light tan very well. It never seems to surpass anything but a healthy look of someone who has been absorbing the sun.

    That doctor looks freaky and disgusting. It'll take some time to get that image out of my head!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lasgo View Post
    Is the ability to tan a Germanic 'trait'? I recently just got back from holiday and noticed that Germans and Dutch tan very well, also lots of Scandinavians tan very well but dont know why they get portrayed as having milk bottle skin? I find British people to tan the least, could it be because of different DNA? Keltic?
    First of all 'British' is not an ethnicity so you need to define what you mean by the term. To tan is NOT a Germanic trait at all. Those who have that 'ability' will more often than not have some impurity in their ancestry.

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