Sunless Tanning products are available in a variety of different styles such as lotion, mist, spray or gel. However, regardless of what type you end up preferring, there are a few universal tips that will not only assist you in the application process but will help in extending the life of your sunless tan.
As a previous salon owner, I have preformed hundreds of professional spray tans. Below is my recommended list of the essential tips to remember when applying sunless tanning products.
First and Foremost: Exfoliate and Shave
Your body is constantly shedding dead skin cells and this process does not occur evenly throughout the body. Therefore, it is important to exfoliate your skin and shave prior to any type of application. This way the product can be applied evenly and it will be able to be absorbed into your skin evenly. Exfoliating will also help prevent the splotchy or patchy look as the sunless tanning product begins to fade.
Allow Yourself Time
Be sure to give yourself plenty of time. Applying your sunless tanning product in a rush may cause undesired results that could have been avoided. Also remember you will need to allow yourself time for the product to dry as well.
Apply Mist or Spray Products in a Ventilated Room
Some pray products can cause a layer to form in the air. This can be avoided by using these types of products in a well ventilated room. Also keep in mind that some products can also cause a slight mess. Be sure to lay a towel or mat down to catch the over spray and prevent a large clean up.
Remove Accessories & Cover Hair (If Desired)
While we all love the look of tanned skin, most of us don’t care for the funky tan lines. Be sure to remove accessories such as jewelry and watches to avoid those funky tan lines.
Apply Barrier Cream or Moisturize
Certain areas of the body contain dry skin, such as the elbows and knees. Applying sunless tanning products to these areas can sometimes cause these areas to develop darker than the rest of the body. This can be avoided by applying barrier cream to these areas prior to the application of the product. Keep in mind too that you should apply less of the product on these areas.
* In my personal experience, sometimes applying barrier cream or moisturizer to these areas (for certain skin types) helped absorb the product or solution more. Thus causing an adverse effect.
Be sure to wear gloves. Some products can be messy and you do not want your hands to be darker than the rest of your body. I would even suggest having an extra pair handy just in case you need a fresh pair.
Apply Sunless Tanning Product
Whether you are using a spray, roller or lotion type of sunless product, be sure and apply the product as even to your skin as possible. Also, regardless of which area you want to begin with, remember to avoid over applying product to your hands and feet. Overly dark hands or feet don’t go over so well and you don’t want to bring any unwanted attention to them.
* In my personal experience, some products can clog pores or leave patchy spots on the face. You may want to wait a day or so to see how the product does on the rest of your body before applying it on your face. With all the many bronzing powers on the market, you may even want to avoid putting the product on your face altogether.
Allow Product to Dry
After all the hard work you went through, you’d be foolish to not give your skin time to dry. Putting on your clothes too soon can sometimes cause streaks or markings. I recommend using a fan to assist in the drying process. If possible, avoid wearing solid white. Some products can rub off onto clothing especially if your skin is not completely dry.
Some products tend to dry out your skin. So as you continue to use your Sunless Tanning Product, it is important to moisturize. In addition, moisturizers and tan extending products will help the color last longer.
Remember that it can take up to a couple of hours for the color to develop. Avoid over applying product. Keep in mind that most products are gradual self-tanners. This means that you can use them a few times a week if not daily. So if your tan does not appear as dark as you desire, rest assure that you can apply more the following day. In addition, avoid soaking in extremely hot water (i.e. Jacuzzis or hot tubs) as well as using products with oils. This can cause undesired results.