Ah.. self tanning. So risky but so worth it if it comes out good. I’m writing this post because I just self tanned last night (and was lazy with it) which looks pretty questionable, but I usually am pretty good! I have been doing it on and off for years and have some tips to share, as well as my favorite products to use. Self tanning is a great alternative to laying out or using tanning beds which we all know is super harmful. Here’s my best tips and tricks on tanning at home:
To get your skin as smooth and even as possible, exfoliate everywhere that you’re going to be applying self tanner. Make sure you get your knees and elbows, as those are areas that tend to hold on to a lot of self tanner. I would recommend shaving as well so that your skin is really soft, and you won’t ruin the tan when you go to shave the next day. Exfoliating before tanning is really important and doesn’t have to be expensive. I usually buy my exfoliators from CVS instead of the ones made by the tanning brands.
After you shower + exfoliate, pat yourself completely dry. I usually don’t moisturize before tanning, but you can on extra dry areas if you think you really need to. Also, if you’re not using some sort of gloves, apply moisturizer on your nails and palms of your hands.
My favorite self tanner to use is the St. Tropez Bronzing Mousse because of its texture and color. It has more of a green undertone than an red undertone so it doesn’t look too orangey when it’s applied. I also use the glove that they sell separately which I HIGHLY recommend. It makes it so much easier to get the tanner to come out smooth, and you don’t have to worry about your hands looking insane. Put 2-3 pumps on the glove and apply in circular motions. What’s great about this tanner is that the color is really dark right away, so you can see where you’ve missed or where you need to blend more. The key is really just to use circular motions, and keep going over the area with the same motions when you have no product left on the glove. Rotate your legs and arms so you can fix any lines that might form after your application.
Dry + Develop
I usually chill in the bathroom for a few minutes to let the tan dry, and then wear a loose t shirt to bed. Be careful with white clothing/ white sheets. Depending on what product you use, you might not notice a tan right away, so be patient and let the tan develop when you’re sleep. It’s better to apply too little than too much.
Usually, I self tan at night so that I can let it develop while I’m asleep.Wait 6-8 hours after you apply the tanner, then rinse off in the shower. If you wake up looking crazy, most times showering once will get rid of any extra color and stickiness. Try to keep the shower short so that the tan can last as long as possible.
If you wake up the next morning and look like you just got dumped in orange paint, IT’S OK! Take a shower and exfoliate a few times. Exfoliating will significantly help fade the tan and get you back to looking normal.
To maintain your tan and make sure it looks it’s best, make sure to moisturize every day and night. If you don’t, your tan might fade weird and end up looking patchy.
Self tanning is so much safer than laying out or going in a tanning bed, so be smart this summer. 🙂 Try this out!
Shop my favorite self tanning products here: