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Tips to Keep Your Spray Tan

tips for spray tan


I’ve had quite a few friends ask me for my tips for keeping my spray tans, which have inspired this post! I’ve been getting spray tans for vacations for the past three years, so I think I’ve finally figured out what works! If you get a custom spray tan (i.e., someone sprays the tan on you) and spend a decent chuck of change for one, you want that sucker to last! I have a fantastic girl at my local Solar Dimensions who does a fabulous job. She’s so meticulous, and I love that. These tips can work for your booth tans, too, but I think those tans can be so uneven to begin with, so it’s harder to keep it even after showering and sweating.

So here’s my tips for keeping that beloved spray tan!

  1. I think it’s so important that you have moisturized skin. Start lotioning up your body two weeks+ before you get your tan. I used to notice that my tans would start to have a crackle look after a few days, and I determined it was because I was NOT moisturizing my skin before and during my tan. Target those elbows, ankles, and knees. Any lotion works, but I love my Soap & Glory The Righteous Butter.
  2. I make my appointments in the evening. Truthfully, I hate the smell of the tans, and I don’t want any of the tanning product to get on my clothes. Also, I like the tan to soak in all night long before I take a shower in the morning.
  3. Right before you head to get your tan (I do it 30 minutes before), hop in the shower and exfoliate the crap out of your skin. Scrub your elbows, knees, and ankles really well. I also use my light exfoliator on my face. Afterwards, do NOT put on any lotion or makeup. Be squeaky clean!
  4. Some people wear their swimsuits, some go completely nude, some just keep their underwear on…do what feels comfortable for you during your tan. Just remember you will have tan lines.
  5. After you get home from your tan, avoid water and sweating. When you head to bed, the tanning solution will rub off on your sheets. BUT, it does come out in the wash.
  6. When you hop in the shower, there are different tips in themselves! Do not use a washcloth or loofah to wash your body. Lather up your body with your hands only. Washcloths are the worst – you will just see the tan come right off. No super hot water; my girl told me hot water is a no-no. Try to take shorter showers. Shave before your tan so you don’t have to shave those legs so much while you have your tan (so thankful I have blonde hair!)
  7. Once you turn the water off, pat yourself dry with a towel. Do not rub! Again, you’ll see the tan come right off on the towel.
  8. Then, immediately lotion up your entire body. You want to keep that skin and tan moisturized! Do this after EVERY shower.

Now, if you get a tan before vacation, you have the challenge of sunscreen. Dun, dun, duuuuuuuuunnnnnnn! I try and go for an oil-free sunscreen. Neutrogena has some great oil free options.

For those who love to workout, you just need to be sure to wear wicking fabric to take the sweat away and to pat dry with a towel.

My last tan I kept for 10 days! I was actually shocked myself! But over the three years, I’ve learned what not to do. What are some tips that you would want others to know?

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