If you are planning to get a spray tan done for a special event, it is better to schedule your session at least two days before the event, so that the color dries and sets properly.
Earlier, people used to spend lots of time in the sun, to achieve a great tan. With the advent of new methods like, tanning beds and spray tanning; sun tanning is not so popular nowadays. While exposure to the sun results in darkening of skin color, tanning beds too cause the same problem. Both these methods involve ultraviolet radiation that affects the skin. Exposure to UV rays is considered a possible cause of skin cancer.
In case of spray tanning, dyes are sprayed on the skin. This is an easy and quick method to achieve a perfect tan. Spray tanning is also considered a safe alternative to tanning beds and sun bathing.
It is always better to consult a spray tan artist and get the tanning done at the salon, though spray tanning products are easily available in stores. However, you must have a basic know-how about how to prepare yourself for the tanning session and how to maintain the tan.
If you are a beginner, it is always better to get it done from a salon with trained professionals. They can help you to choose the perfect skin tone. Apart from that, they have sound knowledge about the amount of spray required for getting that specific tone, and the duration of the tanning session.
When it comes to spray tanning, choosing the perfect skin tone and using the right amount of spray are the most important factors. Above all, spray tan artists know the right method of application and have good quality equipment. One of the golden rules of spray tanning is to prepare beforehand.
How to Prepare
You must remove dead skin cells before the tanning session. There is no use in undergoing spray tanning, if you have dead cells; because the dye gets attached to the dead cells, which will be shed within a few days. This means a loss of tan, soon after application.
While exfoliating, work more on the knees, elbows, ankles, and feet; as these locations tend to have more dead skin cells. If you want to get a manicure or pedicure done, go for it prior to the tanning session. Once the dead cells are removed, it will take some time for another layer to form, and the tan lasts longer!
If you want to wax your body hair, you must do it prior to the spray tanning session. Once you undergo tanning, waxing should not be done immediately, as it will take off the tan. It is advisable to thread your eyebrows before getting the tan. Otherwise, threading can be done after the first shower. Even shaving must be done before the session, so that you can wait for a day or two, before shaving again.
A shower before the tanning session is always beneficial. It may not be possible to take a shower, just after the spray tanning session. However, avoid use of moisturizers, lotions, perfumes, deodorants, oils, and makeup. Avoid using soaps and other products with moisturizing properties.
Such products may leave a thin layer on the skin, and this may interfere with the spray tanning process. You may apply a single coat of nail paint to prevent staining of nails during the session. Avoid wearing jewelry and contact lenses too.
Things to Remember
Wear or carry loose-fitting clothes, because tight clothes may take off the tan. You must carry an umbrella or raincoat, during rainy days. Women may carry a loose bathrobe, a bathing suit, thongs, etc. Men must carry boxer briefs or swim trunks. They must not go nude for spray tan. Carry a pair of flip flops too.
Wipe the sweat and dry yourself, before the session. If you have wounds or cuts on the skin, they have to be covered during the procedure. So talk to the spray tan artist about such injuries and skin diseases. Usually, tanning salons offer instructions before the session. In that case, follow those rules for spray tanning.
Spray Tanning Aftercare
Once the tanning session is over, let the spray dry for at least 10 to 15 minutes. Meanwhile, take a look at your body to check whether the dye is applied evenly or not. Wipe off the excess dye. Wear the robe and wait for another 30 to 40 minutes, before you leave the salon. It may take around six to ten hours for the spray to dry properly. The duration may vary with the type of spray applied.
What to Avoid?
Wear loose clothes and flip flops, and go to your home directly from the salon. Avoid tight clothes, sandals, backpacks and bags that may cause friction, which can affect the outcome of the tan. Avoid exposure to water. Stay away from your pet dog, as it may lick you and take away the color. Avoid strenuous activities that cause sweating, which can affect the tan. Rest on a dark bed sheet, as the color may stain cloths.
It is always better to wait for at least eight hours, before you shower. If possible, shower the next day. A little bit of color may come off during the first shower after the spray tanning session. Avoid hot water shower, and use of loofah, soap and exfoliants, for a few days. You must also avoid showers that extend for a long time. Gently pat the skin dry, as it is not a good idea to rub it.
Keep your body well hydrated and properly moisturized. Regular moisturizing enhances the life of your tan. Ensure that you wear sunscreen, while going out in the sun. You may also use a tan extender, to make it last longer. Reduce the frequency of shaving, in order to extend the life of your tan. Avoid using face masks, band-aids, scented body washes, and anti-aging products.