How to get the BEST sunless tan ever!
You don't need to roast yourself in the hot sun like a christmas turkey. It's really easy these days to get a really good fake tan. There are a few steps however that you should follow to keep your sunless tan flawless. Whether you tan every week or just for the odd photo shoot, these tips will help you get the most from your spray tan.
Scrub, Scrub, Scrub
Exfoliate before you apply any sort of tan. Otherwise it will stick to all the dry patches and you will come out looking like a giraffe (not a good look, trust me). I like to start by doing some dry brushing and then following with a coffee or other scrub in the shower for smooth skin free of dry patches.
Give 24 Hours Notice
Ideally you want to shave/wax/whatever else, about 12-24hours prior to tanning. Shave too soon before your tan and you will end up with dark little spots of tan in the pores of the hair follicles. Shave too soon after your tan and you will strip the tan off and you will end up with white legs and a bronzed body. Not a good look. If you must shave after tanning be sure to apply a gradual tanning lotion after showering to maintain an even colour.
After getting your tan (mainly if it is a spray tan), wait the required amount of time before rinsing it off. Example. If it is a 2 hour tan, wait at least 2 hours before rinsing otherwise your tan will not have had enough time to develop. But beware of keeping it on too long - Keeping it on any longer then 3 hours and it will discolour and you'll end up being orange (despite what most people think, leaving it on longer will not make it darker). When rinsing for the first time, use only water and do it quickly. A 1-2 minute rinse just to get the excess product off is enough. Pat dry with a dark coloured towel after rinsing. Do not rub, it will take the tan off.
Lather Me Up
After 24 hours has passed, each shower should be followed by a thorough coat of moisturiser or tan extender - if you want the tan to last longer. It will stop the skin drying out and thus keep the tan even all over to prevent it becoming patchy as it ages/fades. If you use a tan extender/gradual tanner you can stretch your tan to last up to two weeks depending on the type/brand/quality.
Things To Avoid
Bars of soap - Use body wash instead as soap is too strong and will strip the tan.
Soaking - Whether in pools/spas/bath tubs/ocean , it will fade the tan and make it patchy. Limit your time submerged in the water.
Makeup - When going for your spray tan, you want fresh clean skin. No makeup, perfume, deodorant, moisturiser - nothing on the skin or your tan won't be even.
Loose clothing - After getting your tan try dress in something tight and full length like leggings and a long sleeve tight t-shirt - in black of course. If you get too much skin on skin it will make the tan patchy. Avoid underwear/bras as they may rub and create lines of rubbed away tan.
Water - Water and undeveloped tan don't mix. Try to avoid rain, drinking from a glass or going to the toilet until you have let your tan set and it has been rinsed off. 2 hours is not that long!
It may be a bit of a task to prepare, apply and maintain a gorgeous healthy-looking sunless tan BUT it is worth every bit of effort to get the summery glow without the risk of skin cancer and increasing the rate of ageing. It won't be long until it is little to no effort at all and becomes second nature.
I would love to hear what tips and tricks you know for getting a good tan, let me know them in the comments below!