After I put on my Insta stories earlier this week that I was starting my tan prep routine on a Tuesday you would not believe the amount of messages I received asking why I start on a Tuesday and requests for a blog post with all the Steps & Tips. For those of us not blessed with glowing or dark skin Fake Tan is the only route to take. I am very against sunbeds, and if I sit in the sun I will be cremated on the spot so the art of fake tan is something that I had to master over the years. Yes, it takes years because only in the last 10 years have tan products gotten better. Before the products we have today became available the majority of fake tans would leave you orange, and if that wasn’t bad 'The Fade’ OMG! remember how Fake Tan took weeks to fade, and it wouldn’t all fade at once so you’d be left looking like you’ve never seen a shower in your life…you’d be filthy looking from it. What people need to know now is that it really isn’t like that any more. Tan comes in a shade that suits everyone, smells good, and comes off with a good Exfoliator! The trick with Tan is PREP!!
So what does this involve?
Tuesday - Scrub Day
Day 1 of Tan prep is always removing the remains of last weekends tan. By Tuesday (if you moisturised daily) your tan should be after fading nicely and evenly all over. On Tuesday you get in the shower and you scrub! You scrub like your life depended on it. Use a gritty Exfoliator scrub (any brand you like as we all have our preferences) and an exfoliating mitt to remove all tan and dead skin. If you don’t exfoliate your skin your tan won’t turn out right… in the same way that if you were about to paint something you would clean it first. Scrub! Scrub! And Scrub again!
After your are done removing your top two layers of skin all you have to do is moisturise all over. I always put a really thick layer on and I don’t allow it dry I just put my Pyjamas on and marinate - Yup! I human marinate.
Wednesday - Prep Day
Day 2 of Tan prep is just maintaining and keeping your skin exfoliated and moisturised. If you are a Waxer or Veet user then Wednesday is the day to do this as you need a day gap before you apply your tan. I exfoliate again on Wednesday, but not as aggressively as yesterdays scrub. Just a quick once over with the mitt, and I moisturise after the shower again. On Wednesday night I usually apply some body butter before bed to the areas that are tough and cause tanning trouble - my elbows, wrists, knees, ankles, and armpits. These are the areas that if not completely exfoliated and stripped of all last weeks tan will turn orange so adding body butter makes all the difference.
Thursday - Tan Day
Day 3 of Tan prep is the big one. If you are a shaver do it first thing in the morning so that your pores have all day to close up. Shaving before you apply tan is a massive mistake because your pores will fill with tan and you will end up covered in tiny tan dots darker than the tan around it.
I tan at night so I have another quick shower before with a light rub of the exfoliating mitt to remove the day dirt, and I blast myself with cold water so my pores are closed. The Exfoliator I use on Thursday has a skin primer in it so that my tan will even out the skin’s surface. I tie my hair up or put it in a hair turban so it’s not in my way, I rub a little vaseline on my nails so the tan doesn’t stain my manicure, and I wipe under my arms to be sure all deodorants is gone.
A lot of people panic at the thought of applying the tan in case it’s not even, but there is no need for this because tan has a slight colour that you can see during application so you will know exactly where is covered. I spray my tan foam directly on my tanning mitt and apply the tan in circular motion (not up and down). I apply tan to my face and hands using a makeup brush (yes, you heard me right) because it gives the best coverage to the face, and stops build up on the hands around the knuckles and creases. The makeup brush trick is a Godsend because the hands are the biggest problem area and the biggest give away that you are faking it.
Allow yourself 10 mins to dry and then put on your loose (dark coloured) pyjamas. Do not put your underwear back on so that nothing is tight on your skin. Sleep in your tan - it may say that it only needs a few hours, but it’s a lie! Allow it to develop over night fully. It does not mean you will get darker and darker because every shade has a limit.
Day 4 in Tan prep is the day you glow. All you have to do now is shower (don’t scrub or use products) off the tan residue. You may be a funny colour and have a bit if build up, but that is what this morning’s shower is for - to remove all of that. After your shower, pat yourself dry with the towel don’t rub dry.
The key for maintaining the perfect glow is moisturiser. After your shower apply some all over, and continue to moisturise every day throughout the weekend. My biggest tip is from the Friday night or Saturday morning use a gradual tanning moisturiser just to enhance the glow and keep it fresh that way if you are swimming, exercising, or whatever you are topping up and maintaining throughout.
And that is that. I know it sound like a lot, but it really isn’t as its just a good skin care routine spread out over a few days….and lets be real if tan was made to just apply whenever we wanted sure we would all be glowing every single day! Prep is everything when it comes to fake tan be it from a bottle or a spray tan in a salon it will always need this amount of prep for it to turn out perfect.
Trust me you will thank me later!
Stay Boujee xxx
Extra Boujee Fact:
Choosing your Shade is not a decision or choice because there is only one answer with fake tan - You can only go one category up!!! This is a huge error made by us all at one point, but it is true - you SHOULD only jump up one skin tone category.
Porcelain skin tone - Use a light shade
Light skin tone - Use a medium shade
Medium Skin tone - Use a dark shade
Dark Skin tone - Use Extra dark shade
Extra Dark tone - You and I both know that all you need is a shimmer product not a tan