Self-tanning is a convenient way to achieve a healthy, sun-kissed glow without the harmful effects of UV rays. However, achieving a natural-looking self-tan can be challenging if you’re new to the sunless tanning game. So we’ve compiled a list of steps to help you achieve a gorgeous, natural-looking sunny glow. Here are tips and tricks to turn your self-tan into a suntan!
Step 1: Choose the Right Formula and Products
Choosing the right self-tanning formula is vital to achieving a natural-looking tan. It’s best to always select a self-tanner from a reputable company that uses high-quality ingredients. Glow by Skalla uses nourishing ingredients that soothe and hydrate your skin as your tan develops. Our violet undertone formula delivers a natural brown glow to combat orange hues, and our vanilla-scented self-tanner leaves you smelling deliciously clean and inviting.
If you're new to self-tanning, you will benefit from a self-tanning kit. Glow by Skalla offers a Flawless Finish Bronzing Box with everything you need to achieve a natural-looking endless summer glow. This money-saving set contains our Flawless Finish Bronzing Mousse, our Flawless Finish Bronzing Drops, our Bronzing Mitt, and our Bronzing Back Band.
Step 2: Prep Your Skin
Proper preparation is essential to ensure a smooth, natural tan. Start by exfoliating your skin to remove dead skin cells and create a smooth surface for the self-tanner to adhere to. Pay special attention to areas prone to dryness, such as the knees, elbows, knuckles, and ankles, as these areas can often result in an uneven or patchy-looking tan. A loofah and warm water work great for exfoliating in the shower, and when you’re done, rubbing a dry towel over your skin will help remove any remaining dead skin cells.
After exfoliating, moisturize your skin, especially in areas prone to dryness, to ensure a smooth and hydrated surface for the self-tanner. A helpful tip is to use Vaseline on sites you do not want the tanner to absorb. The Vaseline is oily and makes it hard for the self-tanner to soak into the top layer of the skin.
Step 3: Apply Self-Tanner
When applying self-tanner, it's essential to work in sections. Apply the product in a circular motion, going in the direction of hair growth, and be careful to blend thoroughly to avoid any lines or streaks. Use a self-tanning mitt and back band to ensure an even, streak-free application and to prevent the product from staining your hands. If you choose not to use a mitt or back band, then it is essential that you wash your hands frequently during the application process. For example, apply a section of self-tanner, wash your hands, then apply the next section. This will minimize the absorption and prevent overly tanned palms.
Step 4: Focus on Blending
Blending is critical to achieving a natural-looking tan. As you’re applying the self-tanner, consider where the sun’s rays would naturally hit your body, then apply and blend accordingly.
Pay special attention to blending the self-tanner into areas prone to discoloration or dryness, such as the elbows, knees, ankles, and around the neck. Use a dry cotton swab or a blending brush to help you achieve a seamless, natural-looking tan. It is also helpful to go over naturally darker areas of skin, such as your knees, elbows, knuckles, and wrists, with a damp cloth. These areas of skin will not need as much tanner, so rub a little off before it dries to create a more natural finish. Also, remember to wipe away any excess tanner from the cuticles on your hands and toes.
Step 5: Wait and Set
Once you've applied the self-tanner, please wait at least 20 minutes for it to dry completely. Avoid getting dressed, sweating, or getting wet during this time, as this can affect the color and longevity of your tan. Once the self-tanner has dried, you can get dressed, but remember to wear loose-fitting clothing to prevent transfer until the tanner fully develops. It’s also a good idea to skip your favorite white tee the night you apply self-tanner. It’s best to wear something dark just in case a little product rubs off onto your clothes.
Tanning Pro Tip: Use your hair dryer or a fan to speed up the drying process!
Step 6: Maintain Your Tan
To maintain your natural-looking self-tan, it's essential to keep your skin hydrated and exfoliate regularly. Use a mild exfoliating scrub a few times weekly to remove dead skin cells and ensure an even, long-lasting tan. You can also extend the life of your tan by reapplying a small amount of self-tanner every 2-3 days, focusing on areas prone to fading, such as the feet, knees, and elbows. It may not be necessary to reapply the tanner all over your body. Instead, assess if you need any touch-ups and focus on those areas. You will eventually need to reapply over the entire body, but your tan should generally last around 5 to 7 days.
Once you’re tanned to perfection, avoid aggressive towel drying after a bath, shower, or swim. To preserve the life of your tan, towel dry by patting the towel against your skin to remove moisture.
A natural-looking self-tan is possible with the proper preparation, formula, and application techniques. Always use a high-quality self-tanner like Glow by Skalla’s Flawless Finish Bronzing Mousse or, for face application, Glow by Skalla’s Flawless Finish Bronzing Drops. If you follow the tips and tricks in this article, you'll be well on your way to a sun-kissed glow that looks and feels natural. Remember to be patient and take your time, as self-tanning can take some practice to perfect. You may have to attempt the process several times before you figure out precisely what works best for your body. And your self-tanning technique may change throughout the year as your skin adjusts to weather and seasonal factors. But once you get those perfectly bronzed, sunkissed, glowing results, it will all be worth it!