With bronzers, lotions, and spray tans, you should always exfoliate your face and skin before application. Spagnuolo says the pigment won’t set in as well if your skin has any barriers that would block the color, including makeup or moisturizer.
If you choose to use a self-tanning lotion or spray tan, the color will take four to six hours to set in. If you’ve applied too much pigment, jump in the shower – most of it will wash off. Dr. Schulz also suggests exfoliating to remove some of the pigment – it won’t be absorbed into your skin yet. Conversely, if you feel you should add more tanner, wait the six hours – the color will turn darker as your skin absorbs it. If it’s been six hours and you still feel you need more color, you can apply another dose of color, but you’ll have to wait another six hours before showering if you want the color to stay. Avoiding water includes avoiding exercise – no one wants sweat streaks in their tan! If you absolutely can’t wait that long and have already applied tanning product, try using a blow-dryer to speed up the absorption process.
What are your favorite self-tanning products? Have any tips to share?
InStyle’sUltimate Beauty Secrets.
Dr. Peggy Fuller, Dermatologist
Margarite Spagnuolo, Co-Owner, Tantastic Parties [ http://www.hercampus.com].
Valerie Zefiretto, graduate, UNC Chapel Hill.