As an avid faux tanner of around six years I am fairly confident that I am well qualified to be handing around advice about how to fake tan properly.
The following guide has come out of my own experiences – let's just say that I made the mistakes (many of them!) so that you don't have to.
- If you need to shave be sure to make sure to do it the day before. The same applies to waxing, because if you do it after you are going to strip the fake tan off as well, and if you do it the same day it is going to sting and irritate your sensitised skin.
- Make sure you exfoliate your entire body and pay special attention to dry areas such as knees, elbows and feet. I like to use a really gritty solution – if you don't own a good exfoliator then a cup of sugar mixed with your regular body wash does the trick nicely.
- After exfoliating you should use a moisturiser all over your body – paying special attention on dry areas such as knees, elbows, hands and feet.
- Be sure to rub the tan in well and use a tinted solution whenever you can – good lighting helps too, as does doing it in front of a mirror.
- Be sure your tan is completely dry before you get dressed. Its good to wear loose fitting clothes AND if you can, you should avoid wearing underwear (especially a bra) for the first few hours as the elastic can leave marks.
- After you have coated your entire body grab a damp flannel or paper towel. Making sure it is just damp, and won't create drips, use it to remove the tanning solution from your elbows, knees, wrists and feet.
- Take a moisturiser and rub it into the areas you have just removed the tanning solution from, blending into the areas that still have fake tan on them. This way you don't end up with white hands and feet or streaky areas and it wil create a natural, seamless look.
- Always remember to wash between your fingers afterwards.
- Sometimes I find that washing my hands after I am finished removes too much colour and I end up with white hands. To combat this I keep a light coloured tanning spray in the bathroom cupboard and lightly spray my hands from a distance after they have been washed.
- Moisturise often as this will prolong the effects and some ingredients in self-tanners do tend to dry out the skin a tad.