Gorgeous, gorgeous people look after their skin, meaning that protecting it from the sun is paramount. We slip, we slop, we slap, and we SLIDE – yet we still want a lovely sunkissed complexion sans the sunburn. Is it possible? Yes. Through the magic of semi-permanent faux tan potions.
Alas, we all know that routine spray tans can be a bit of a drag. They cost money, appear patchy, and smell odd, like kombucha. We can all agree that we’ve experienced our fair share of ‘bad spray tans’ and want to do what we can to end this epidemic today!
So How Does a Spray Tan Work Exactly?
To start with some cheerful news, spray tanning is quite safe because it mainly entails dyeing the dead skin cells on the top layer of the body's skin. The method is safe when the solution is applied externally because the chemicals are not absorbed or transferred into the bloodstream—yay! Dihydroxyacetone (DHA), the primary component of spray-tanning products, is responsible for the skin cells' natural aging process. DHA is a tanning agent that interacts with the keratin-containing amino acids in the skin. The resulting response darkens the skin to a brown colour. The colour persists until the dead skin cells on the body are exfoliated or shed naturally during skin regeneration. How’s that for some sexy science?
Should I Exfoliate Before a Spray Tan?
This brings us to the exact point we wish to make – and why we constantly advise exfoliating before a spray tanning session. Exfoliation involves removing the outermost layer of skin cells to reveal the fresher, younger skin beneath. Dead skin cells are shed after two to four weeks as part of the skin's natural renewal process. Exfoliating the skin helps clean, unclog pores, and prevent outbreaks. Dead skin cells can be eliminated from your skin, and a great base for the tanning solution is created by exfoliating before tanning. For extra points, your tan will last longer and be applied evenly, which we LOVE to see. Similarly, exfoliating is crucial before shaving, just as before tanning. Why? Well, it makes the hair follicles visible and makes shaving easier. Ingrown hairs from earlier hair removal procedures are also removed by it.
Different Ways You Can Exfoliate Before Getting a Spray Tan
Exfoliating is typically done with a decent body scrub or exfoliant while taking a shower or bath. Mitts for tanning are also used to scrub the body when bathing. These have the appearance of gloves but are composed of a rough substance to remove the dead skin cells. The entire procedure enhances blood flow and lets skin toxins go. For a more gentle and skin-kind approach, we prefer exfoliation with chemicals – like our Green Tea Shower Foam! Ingredients in chemical exfoliants use potent ingredients to disintegrate dead cells and bacterial buildup, helping speed cell turnover to leave your skin fresher, brighter, and clearer, with minimised pores and a smoother surface. Before the tanning, exfoliating will make your skin smooth and bright and enhance your tan quality. When exfoliating before the spray tan, pay close attention to the dry regions of the body. The soles, ankles, heels, elbows, knuckles, and knees are among these places because skin cells are lost quickly. Therefore, body exfoliating before the process is vital if you want a great, even tan.
👉 More Info: Sundae's Guide To Exfoliating Different Skin Types
Avoid Tight Clothing, Workouts and Rain
Depending on the solution used, the tan can take up to twelve hours to develop, so you should exercise caution after getting a spray tan. In addition to avoiding super tight clothing, especially pants with inseams like jeans and some leggings, you should try to prevent perspiring, swimming, showering, and/or getting caught in the rain.
Further, we suggest against waxing and other body treatments like facials or massages following because they may affect how your tan turns out.
Showering and Sleeping After a Spray Tan
Depending on the type of spray tan you got, you'll need to wait a certain period of time before taking a shower. Some express solutions allow you to shower after one to three hours, whereas traditional spray tans require eight to twelve hours to develop (it's better to sleep in them and then shower in the morning). Additionally, some transparent spray tans don't require you to shower, but your tan will stop fading after 12 hours. Beware that your tan will appear darker than it actually is if you sleep with it on. However, you ought to have a tan that is fully formed and a lighter tone when you wash the bronzer off in the morning. It's vital to wear long, dark clothing when you sleep so that if you happen to sweat any of your tan off, it will land on your pyjamas rather than your clean, white sheets. (Luckily, many tanning marks wash off with soap and water!)
If you exercise frequently, you might notice that your tan fades unevenly. If that's the case, ensure you're moisturising daily and exfoliating your body every couple of days to guarantee your tan is even and flawless-looking.
💭 How Much Exfoliating Is Too Much Exfoliating?
A final word of wisdom – if you’ve got a fancy celebration on the horizon and plan on getting perfectly bronzed, we advise getting sprayed one to two days prior so the colour will have time to fully take hold before the momentous day and you won’t get sprung with any (bad) surprises.
Happy Sundae x
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