Have you been self-tanning or spray tanning this summer, and suddenly you realized you’re not happy with the shade on your face? Perhaps you overdid it and it turned out a bit orange, but you have a big event coming up. Well in this article I’m going to go over how to get the fake tan off your face in 7 easy ways.
How To Get Fake Tan Off Your Face
Before I get to the steps and methods you can use, it’s important to briefly remind ourselves how self-tanners work. Just about all sunless tanning products contain the chemical dihydroxyacetone (DHA). When DHA interacts with the dead skin cells on the outer layer of your skin, it chemically reacts darkening in color and forming what looks like a natural tan.
So, this fake tan lives on the very outer edge of your skin, which is why it fades quickly and takes frequent reapplications as the skin naturally renews and sheds dead skin cells.
So when we talk about getting the fake tan off of something like our face, we’re not actually talking about washing it off like you would paint or makeup, we’re really talking about speeding up the renewal process of the skin to make the fake tan fade quicker.
Alright, now that we’ve made that clear, let’s talk about some of the best ways to remove fake tan from your face specifically.
Since self-tanner lives on the outer layer of your skin, one of the best ways to remove it safely, naturally, and quickly, is through a quality exfoliator. I like using a microdermabrasion exfoliant designed for the face like this one you can get on Amazon. Not only will your skin feel fantastic afterward, but it will help get the fake tan off your face in a way that won’t leave it looking streaky or splotchy.
Just a warning, be sure to use the exfoliant just as you normally would. It can be tempting to scrub extra hard, or use it for an extended period of time, however, this will likely just lead to the irritated red skin. We want to speed up the natural fading process of the self-tan, not grind off the skin holding the tan.
2. Try Lemon Juice
Lemon juice has been a popular way to remove self-tanner for a while. There are basically two ways to do this.
The first is to just take some lemon juice you can get from your local store, and apply it to a cotton ball or pad, and gently dab it all over your face, making sure to apply it evenly. Let it sit on your skin for a few minutes. The acidity of the lemon juice will help to break down the dead skin cells on the outer layer of your face, helping to remove the color. After a few minutes, gently rinse it off a few times with warm water.
You can also try making a bit of an exfoliant with lemon juice by mixing a tablespoon of lemon juice with a tablespoon of sugar to make a bit of a paste. Gently scrub the mixture all over your face, let it sit a few minutes, and then thoroughly rinse it off with warm water.
Ugh, this is certainly one of my favorite ways to remove sunless tanner or spray tan from my face. If you have access to a steam sauna, go hang out in there for 30-45 minutes, and then gently rub your face down with a clean towel. Just like all the other methods listed, this will help to speed up the natural renewal process of your skin and gently remove the tan.
4. Baking Soda
You can also make a paste with either baking soda and water, or baking soda and lemon juice. These are both lightening agents, and rubbing them into your skin can help to lift the color from your skin.
This is a really good option if you need to remove self-tanner from your face right away. Fairly new to the market, and extremely unique, Bondi Sands, the popular self-tanning company, developed a product specifically to remove self-tanner. You can get it on Amazon, or directly from Bondi Sands.
The product is extremely easy to use and contains no harsh chemicals whatsoever. To use this to help remove self-tanner from your face, just pump out a fair amount from the bottle, and apply liberally to your skin. Leave it on your skin for about 5 minutes, then take a shower and gently wash it away with a wet washcloth.
You’ll honestly be amazed at just how well this stuff works.
5. White Vinegar
The nice thing about white vinegar is that you probably already have some in your home. This stuff is used for just about everything and is extremely inexpensive. It also happens to work really well for washing self-tanner off your face or anywhere else. The best way to use it for this purpose is to apply it to your skin and let it sit for about 15 minutes, then go take a shower and rinse it all off.
The acidity of the vinegar will help break down the layer of skin holding the fake tan.
6. Baby Oil
Baby oil works fairly well at reducing the color from self-tanner, but it isn’t the best option if you actually want to remove it quickly. To use baby oil to speed up the fading process on your face, simply rub some in, and leave it on for about 15 minutes. Then gently rinse it off in the shower with a warm washcloth. Not only does this work well at reducing the color from self-tanner, but it also feels amazing and is great for your skin.
7. Go For A Swim
The chlorine inside most swimming pools is actually quite rough on the skin. In most cases, this isn’t a great thing. However, if you’re trying to get fake tanner off your face or anywhere else, this can work quite well. After you’ve swum around for a while (make sure to spend plenty of time underwater so that chlorine can interact with your skin), go take a shower and use an exfoliant. This should help loosen and remove that outer layer of the skin on your face taking most of the color with it.
Alright, well that should be enough ideas for you to use to help get that tan off your face! Let me know in the comments how well these worked for you!