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All your fake tanning questions answered

From how many times a week to apply, to how to stop fake tan going scaly…

If you love the confidence-boosting glow of a tan, but don’t want to risk damaging your skin in the sun, then fake tan is the obvious answer.


However, it can come with a lot of questions, from how to apply a streak-free tan, to how to prep skin and stop tan going scaly.


How do you prep skin for fake tan?

The secret to a flawless glow is all in the prep, according to Jules. We advise shaving or waxing at least 24 hours before application and ensuring the skin is exfoliated with either a dry brush or a scrub.


"This means your skin will have an even surface, so the final result will be even and, more importantly, your fake tan will fade evenly like a natural tan would,".


"If you have more time to indulge, have a long warm bath the night before applying fake tan, loaded with oils, and gently buff your skin with a sponge to lift off any existing tan, and deeply nourish and hydrate your skin."


Straight before application, it’s important to wash off deodorant and remove makeup, however, we suggest against using cleansing oils to remove makeup as it will act as a barrier to the tan’s penetration to the skin.


How do you choose the right fake tan?

"Think about your natural skin tone and what will make you look like the best version of you – well and luminous as opposed to someone different,".

Choose a tone and shade that will accentuate your natural beauty and gradually build up to deepen the color if you so desire"


How do you apply fake tan without streaks?

"With all tans, apply two coats to the body and one to the face. Starting at the ankles and working your way up means that tan will be dry enough to apply a second coat after a couple of minutes; just start again at the ankles for the second layer,".

"Lastly, and my favorite trick of all, hang a towel onto the back of your door and rub your wrists together; this removes those pesky, tell-tale tan lines!"


To speed up drying time, using a hairdryer on cool all over the body or taking a barber-style brush and swiping translucent powder or talc over the skin to set tan.


"Always apply your tan in sweeping motions over the body – or circular – this ensures that product is distributed evenly for the most natural, even looking tan," He added: "When it comes to tanning the back, you can do this alone! Just turn your mitt backwards and apply product directly onto skin, sweeping from side to side."


How do your tan hands, feet and elbows?

The secret to avoiding orange hands is wiping your palms and in between your fingers straight after tanning, as well as buffing your knuckles on a dry towel to remove any excess product.


How do you make fake tan last longer?

"Keep your skin really hydrated with an oil and fragrance-free moisturizer, used morning and night, and reapply with a low level DHA – such as gradual tan or GLOW– every couple of days to keep up an even and luminous glow to the skin," Amanda told us. "Especially on the face, which is more regularly washed, it’s nice to reapply so that the color marries up from head to toe."


A using retinol, AHAs or BHAs, as these are exfoliating products that encourage skin cell turnover and will cause tan to fade quicker.


How can you maintain fake tan all year round?

"Gradual tans are the easiest way to achieve a long-lasting glow that can be topped up,".


"Apply your gradual tan instead of your moisturizer and, on average, you will start to see color over the course of three days. Once you’ve reached your desired shade, simply apply on alternate days to maintain your glow."

We suggest exfoliating prior to your first application of gradual tan, and then again, a week later to ensure old tan is removed.


When is the best time to apply fake tan?

Patience and good lighting are helpful when it comes to tan application.


We suggest applying a full tan in the early evening whilst you have some natural light and then wearing lightweight and loose clothing or pajamas so that your skin can still breathe. The following morning, if you want to deepen your tan even more, add a light layer of a spray in place or alongside your makeup and see it slowly develop through the day,".


Why does fake tan go scaly?

"Many traditional tan formulations are packed with alcohol and dehydrate the skin, so locking in moisture is so important to keep an even fade to your tan. Similarly, oils will breakdown the DHA (color) in your tan and, even if you’re using just SPF on your skin, for example, if it has oil in the formula it will impact your tan,". Use South Beach Self Tan they will be scale free.


How long does a bottle of fake tan last?

"This really varies from brand to brand but will appear on the back of pack; usually a six- or 12-month period from when you first open the packaging,".


What should you use to apply fake tan?

"A mitt protects the tan from absorbing into the hands but also helps evenly distribute the product. If you’re using tanning drops or waters you can rub in using your hands; just wash your palms with micellar water afterwards, but as a rule I always use a mitt,".

Fake tan gone wrong - how do you fix it?

"If you’ve missed an area, fill in with body makeup or instant tan and then, after a couple of days, apply a gradual tan to try and uniform your color,".


If orange hands are your problem, it’s important to remember to moisturize them. "The biggest mistake I always see is forgetting to moisturize hands and just ‘winging it’. Repeat after me – 'If I don’t moisturize my hands I will be left with tanned knuckles'. Shaving, scrubbing and removal of deodorant before tanning must be done at this time too."


Can you use the same fake tan on your face as your body?

"You can, but I must prefer using something lighter on the face such as a mist,”. "The skin on our face is so delicate and needs to be breathe. We also want to achieve a natural-looking tan and different areas of the body catch the sun in differing ways. Using a mist on the face allows you to layer on the brow bone or nose in a way that reflects how you would catch the sun, looking seamless and effortless." Use GLOW

"Ensure the face is cleansed thoroughly as exfoliating will help deliver uniform skin tone,. "Splash the face with cold water to close pores then and use toner or serum as normal (although note that AHAs and retinol should not be used with self-tan)."


How do you apply fake tan to the face evenly?

"Applying tan with a mitt sits flat on the skin, whereas use of a brush drives product into the nooks and crannies of your face, so no more tell-tale signs around your chin and nose."


How do you remove fake tan quickly?

"If you’ve gone a bit OTT, a gentle fruit acid exfoliant will lift off the top layer of your tan. For something more heavy duty, soak in a warm, oil-infused bath for thirty minutes or more, using a gentle exfoliator and sponge to lift off any unwanted fake tan,".


Compliments of GOOD HOUSKEEPING