How To Get The Best Faux Glow

It’s no secret that some of us covet that gorgeous sun kissed glow all year around. Just because it’s Winter and we haven’t seen sunshine in months, doesn’t mean we can’t pretend that we have just got back from a luscious tropical holiday. Although getting a spray tan is the most fool proof way to get a perfect and even tan without exposing your skin to damaging UV rays, there are some things you need to do before and after to ensure there are no tanning disasters, which is everyone’s biggest fear right? Here are some insider tips from on how you can achieve the perfect spray tan.

Prep Your Skin

Your skin should be a blank canvas when you arrive for your spray tan as this will result in a more even looking tan and also ensure that it lasts longer. To prep your skin for a perfect tan, shower just before your tan appointment using an exfoliant (avoid any oil-based scrubs as these can act as a barrier to the tan) paying special attention to dry areas like the knees, hands, elbows and ankles. Use a tan removal mitt to remove any traces of old tan and dead skin cells to give a smooth base for your tan and remove all soap and body wash thoroughly. Do not apply any moisturizer, deodorant or creams to your skin before your tan.

Hair Removal

Your skin tends to become more sensitive after waxing or shaving. Schedule your regular waxing appointment at least one day before your spray tan session to prevent tan pigments from settling in your pores.

Stay Away From Purfumes and Deodorants

As hard as this is you must ensure that you stay away from any perfumes or deodorant on the day of the tan. Just like moisturisers, creams and oils, purfumes and deodorants may interfere with the tanning solution and cause marks or patches. Ingredients in them can also form a reaction with the spray tan, resulting in a green tinge. Not exactly how you’ll want your fake tan to turn out.

No Orange Hands

The dreaded orange palms are every girls worst nightmare and the first giveaway that your tan is not a natural one. Your spray tan technican should provide a special barrier cream for your hands, elbows, feet and knees at your appointment which will prevent these dry areas from going too dark. Also when getting tanned always have the palm of your hand faced away from the direction of the spray to avoid overspray on this area.


Slip into loose-fitting clothing and footwear and allow some time for your spray tan to settle. A spray tan will continue to develop even after your first shower, so keep this in mind when getting dressed for the next day or so after your tan and avoid tight fitting clothes like tights or jeans. You wouldn’t want to ruin your perfect tan and leave unsightly marks on your clothes.

After your tan

Make sure you stay cool and dry until you shower and avoid water at all costs. Most tans can be washed off between 2-8 hours, but ask your spray tan technican for specific care instructions depending on the solution they have used. When you do shower keep bath and shower temperatues cool or luke-warm as hot water can stimulate the tan to break up faster. Pat skin dry, as rigorous rubbing will scrub the tan off and could result in patchiness. After your first shower leave your skin bare for at least 12 hours to avoid interfering with the continued development of your tan. Avoid deodorant after the first wash as it will leave white marks under your arms.

Prolong Your Tan

Your tan, depending on your skin type, pre-tan preparation and after tan care, will generally last between 5 to 7 days for fair skin and 10 to 12 days for olive toned skin. If you want your tan to last avoid hot water and chlorine, which can strip the tan off the body and cause patchiness. Sweating, scrubbing and harsh body washes, soaps and creams can all affect the life of your tan. You should also avoid products that contain glycolic acids, alpha hydroxy acids, chlorine and any products that have a high content of alcohol or oil, as they will strip your tan.


The biggest thing is hydration and this starts on the inside. Drink plenty of water and moisutrise (sorbolene based creams are best – try to avoid products containing fragrance, alcohol and parabens which can all reduce the life if your tan) your tan twice daily to prevent from skin from drying out and to help your tan fade naturally. If your super worried you can apply a tan extender which has some DHA (tanning agent found in most tans) to keep your colour rich and lasting a day or two longer than it would otherwise.

Before You Leave The Salon

Ask your technician for the name of a particular solution if you were happy with it, that way you know what to ask for in the future and do a self check in the mirror after your spray tan to make sure it has been applied properly and no areas have been missed.

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