Before you set foot into the spray tan salon, you need to prepare your skin for the spray tan! It is so important to properly prepare your skin before the application, to give the spray tan the best base to develop on, and for the tan to be long-lasting too.
One of the skin-care tips often advised by salons is to exfoliate your skin before a spray tan.
Is it a good idea to exfoliate before a spray tan? It is definitely a good idea to exfoliate before your spray tan. Exfoliating your skin helps to remove any build-up of dead skin cells and other debris, and means that the spray tan product can last for longer before shedding off.
If you can only fit one skin-prepping step in before your spray tan appointment, it should be exfoliating! Read on to find out more about why you should exfoliate before a spray tan, when you should, and the best way to do so!
Why You Should Exfoliate Before A Spray Tan
Exfoliating before a spray tan is such an important step, and you should not have a spray tan done if you have not had the chance to exfoliate first.
Spray tans contain an ingredient called Dihydroxyacetone (DHA), which is a compound that reacts with amino acids on the outer layer of your skin, as well as the oxygen in the air, to turn your skin a darker shade.
As the spray tan reacts with the outer layer of your skin, you need to ensure that your skin is properly prepared for the spray tan, and the best way to do this is to exfoliate.
Exfoliating your skin removes excess dead skin cells and other build-ups, and creates a smoother, more even surface for the spray tan to react on.
If there are excess dead skin cells left on your skin, these areas will turn darker with the spray tan, as they will be drier and would absorb more spray tan than the rest of your skin.
If you are wanting an even-looking, non-patchy tan, you need to exfoliate before.
How Long Before A Spray Tan Should You Exfoliate?
When you exfoliate is crucial, as you want to make sure that your skin is clear and fresh, ready to be spray tanned, but you also do not want to exfoliate too soon before the spray tan that your skin is sensitive and maybe reacts badly to the spray tan product.
You also need to give your skin a little bit of time to heal and replenish, so that the spray tan has something to adhere to when it is applied to your skin.
Taking this all into consideration, it is a good idea to exfoliate the day before your spray tan application. If your spray tan appointment is before lunchtime, then exfoliate the evening before. If your spray tan appointment is nearer the evening, you can exfoliate the morning of.
The minimum amount of time you should give your skin to recover after exfoliating before a spray tan is 4 hours, but if you can wait a little bit longer, it would be best. Just do not wait too long, and exfoliate no more than 24 hours before.
How To Exfoliate Before A Spray Tan
How you exfoliate your skin before a spray tan will have quite an effect on how well your spray tan turns out, so take a look at the below step-by-step guide on how best to exfoliate your skin before a spray tan:
- Take a warm bath or shower, long enough to allow your skin to be hydrated and soft. Shave during this time to in order to properly prepare your skin for a tan.
- Try and leave all the steam in the bathroom if possible, to keep skin soft. Use an oil-free, gentle body scrub and exfoliating mitt to exfoliate your skin.
- Rub the body scrub and exfoliator mitt in circular motions, working from top to bottom.
- Once you have finished exfoliating your skin, jump into the shower to rinse off.
- After rinsing off, dry your skin with a towel and hydrate with a good, oil-free moisturizer.
If you do not have an exfoliating mitt, you could use a washcloth to exfoliate your skin, or just a body scrub on its own. If you do not have enough time for this routine, the next best option is to hop into the shower and exfoliate when under the water.
What To Avoid When Exfoliating Your Skin
Exfoliating your skin is such a helpful step, but you do need to be gentle and caring to your skin when doing so. You need to make sure to use the right products and techniques to exfoliate your skin, to not irritate it too much.
Here are some things to avoid when exfoliating your skin before a spray tan:
- Avoid using body scrubs that contain sulfates or parabens, as these can strip your skin of too much oil, and can leave your skin drier than ever. These two ingredients can also irritate your skin, which might affect your spray tan.
- Do not use body scrubs that contain microbeads either, as these can be really rough on your skin. The microbeads are also not great for the environment, as they do not dissolve when you wash them down the drain.
- Avoid being too rough on your skin. Exfoliating is important, but you should not scrub too hard. This could leave your skin raw and irritated, and it could cause the spray tan to irritate your skin too. Gentle exfoliation is all you need.
- Make sure to rinse your skin well after exfoliating, to remove any of the body scrub residue, and to wash away dead skin cells, so your skin is left clear before the spray tan.
- You need to moisturize your skin after exfoliating, but make sure to avoid an oil-based moisturizer or any products that contain alcohol or artificial fragrances.
Essential Products For Exfoliating Before A Spray Tan
To properly exfoliate your skin before a spray tan appointment, you need the essentials!
A good exfoliating mitt is such a help to reach all areas of your body when exfoliating, and you are in complete control of how much pressure you can apply to your skin when exfoliating.
The Dermasure Deep Exfoliating Mitt is a great option for this, and it will help to effectively remove excess dead skin cells, revealing healthy, smooth skin which is ready for a spray tan.
It is also a good idea to use a body scrub when exfoliating, but make sure to use one that is oil-free, so that there is no residue left behind after exfoliating.
The Elemis Frangipani Monoi Salt Glow Scrub is free from mineral oils, parabens, and artificial colors, so it is not only great at scrubbing away dead skin cells, but it is gentle on your skin too, and perfect for pre-tan preparation.
Should I Exfoliate My Face Before A Spray Tan?
Do not forget that you need to exfoliate your face if you are going to be getting a spray tan there too!
However, you should be gentler when exfoliating your face and use an exfoliator that is suited for sensitive skin. If you have a facial exfoliator at home already, and it is oil-free, then that should be fine to use before a spray tan.
If you have a facial exfoliating brush, you could use this to remove any excess dead skin cells and other build-ups too, and to give your face a bit of a massage to improve blood circulation.
Make sure your facial skin is cleansed and exfoliated before the spray tan, but be sure to moisturize it too!
It is so crucial to exfoliate before a spray tan. Spray tan products work by reacting with the top layer of your skin, and if there are excess dead skin cells and dry areas, then the spray tan will turn darker in some places, and this will cause patches and streaks.
Exfoliate no less than 4 hours before your spray tan, preferably the day before if possible, and moisturize with an oil-free moisturizer to properly prep your skin for a beautiful bronze tan!
If you want to know more about how to prepare for a spray tan, take a look at this video from Vacay Beauty.
What should I avoid before a spray tan?
You should avoid wearing deodorants, perfume, or makeup when going for a spray tan. These products can create a barrier between your skin and the spray tan, which could lead to it becoming patchy.
Can I shave 2 hours before having a spray tan?
You should not shave 2 hours before a spray tan. It is best to shave at least 24 hours before a spray tan, to ensure that your pores have had time to close up (a cold shower helps with this), and your skin has time to regenerate before the spray tan.
The same goes for waxing – do not wax within the 24 hours leading up to a spray tan.