Spray tans are a necessity for some, offering up an easy to achieve golden glow no matter the time of the year. The secret to a radiant spray tan is having nourished, moisturized skin.
Moisturizing is important anyways, but even more so in the days leading up to the spray tan and then after your spray tan, to help lock in the color and your natural glow.
However, not all lotions will preserve your spray tan perfectly, so which lotions should you use?
There are specifically designed lotions that were made for spray tan maintenance, and these are your best bet on maintaining a perfect, bronzed glow.
The Importance Of Moisturizing After A Spray Tan
Moisturizing before your spray tan is really vital, as hydrated skin absorbs a spray tan solution much better than dry skin, but your skin needs to continue to be moisturized well after your spray tan.
Spray tans work using an ingredient called DHA. This chemical reacts with the outer dead skin cells, turning them a darker tone. As our skin is continuously replacing cells, it is common for these dead skin cells to slough off to make way for fresh, new skin cells. However, when these dead skin cells slough off, so does your spray tan.
To help keep this outer layer of skin cells in place for longer, you have to keep the skin moisturized and nourished, and applying lotion continuously after your spray tan will ensure this.
Which Lotions To Avoid
Not all lotions are conducive to keeping a spray tan glowing and long-lasting. Knowing which ingredients and properties of a lotion to avoid will help you choose the right lotion to use.
The below properties of lotions should be avoided, as they will not give you the proper moisturization and results needed for maintaining a spray tan:
Exfoliation – You absolutely need to avoid a lotion that might cause your skin to exfoliate before it is meant to. Small beads or exfoliating creams should be avoided. These will remove the top layer of skin cells, and with it, your tan. They can also result in a very patchy spray tan, which is sometimes worse than your spray tan fading altogether.
Mineral oils – Many lotions contain mineral oils, but these mineral oils can strip your skin of a tan. The mineral oils can also act as a barrier between the spray tan solution and your skin, which results in streaks, patches, and dark spots.
Fragrances – Lotions which contain fragrances are often not great for a spray tan, especially if they contain artificial fragrances, which could contain alcohol. This will strip your skin of the spray tan, and once again lead to patches and streaks.
Here are some other common ingredients to avoid in lotions:
- Essential oils
- Anti-aging products
- Hair removal products
- Make-up removal products
All these will strip your skin of the tan, instead of providing it with much-needed moisture to ensure it is radiant and long-lasting.
Ingredients To Use In A Lotion
Now that you know what not to look for in a lotion, you should understand which ingredients and properties are beneficial to the maintenance of a spray tan.
- Shea butter
- Coconut oil
Oil-free and fragrance-free lotions are best to keep the integrity of the spray tan, and ingredients such as the shea butter, coconut oil, and aloe-vera will deliver vital, gentle hydration to the skin, keeping it wonderfully nourished and moisturized. These natural ingredients are also gentle on the skin.
The Best 3 Lotions To Use After A Spray Tan
These three lotions will be your best bet to a long-lasting, natural-looking tan. They have everything your skin will need to grab hold of the spray tan, allowing to look deep, dark and bronzed.
1. Australian Gold Moisture Lock Tan Extender
For ultimate moisture control and hydration, the Moisture Lock Tan Extender from Australian Gold will be your best friend for spray tan maintenance!
The moisture lock lotion helps to seal in hydration, extending the lifespan of the tan and giving it a glowing, smooth complexion.
With panthenol and aloe, the lotion will soothe the skin, as well as condition it to hold in maximum color. To top it off, the included vitamin E helps to nourish the skin, giving it the ultimate care.
The pump action bottle is super easy to use, and the lotion itself glides evenly over the skin, drying quickly to lock in as much moisture as possible.
2. Hemp Nation Moisturizing Tan Extender Lotion
Natural and nurturing to your skin, the Hemp Nation Moisturizing Tan Extender Lotion is one of the best lotions you can get for your newly spray tanned skin.
With a blend of vanilla, pineapple, and tropical fruit, enzymes and antioxidants help to reduce any signs of aging, help with skin elasticity and deeply hydrate the skin, all while keeping the skin silky smooth and soft.
Pure hemp seed oil helps to provide the skin with the ultimate hydration, using the perfect balance of amino acids and essential fatty acids. Shea butter, jojoba and glycerin lock down the moisture into the skin, and a supercharged vitamin E and B5 fusion protect against aging.
To perfect the look of the skin even further, soft-focus microspheres scatter light on the skin to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
This is a do-it-all lotion that will give your skin much needed hydration, as well as make it look as youthful as possible.
3. Skinerals Tanner Extender Lotion
Skinerals are known to have some of the most gentle products in the self-tanning and spray tanning industry, so you really can’t go wrong with their caring and soothing tan extender lotion.
The Skinerals Tanner Extender Lotion helps to extend the lifespan of both self-tanners and spray tans. It can be used on both the face and the body, to compliment the new tan color and to combat against dryness.
The lotion uses safe, natural and organic ingredients over non-organic wherever possible, and is cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free and vegan.
Fruit and plant extracts, essential oil blend, natural plant-based oils, and other caring ingredients leave the skin soothed, fresh and perfectly toned. It has a slight color which helps to enhance your spray tan color between applications.
Skinerals believe in natural skin science, and with their lotion, your spray tan will be left in the best condition possible, with a beautifully radiant glow, a smooth shine and healthier than ever before with regular use.
Can I use a lotion straight after a spray tan?
It is best to wait for 12 hours after a spray tan to apply your first bit of lotion. Using a lotion before this, especially in the first 8 hours, can disrupt the development of the spray tan, causing it to not take to the skin and tan evenly across the body. Using a lotion before 8 hours can cause streaks, patches and lighter areas which will cause your tan to look very unnatural.
What should I avoid after my spray tan?
There are a few things you should not use after a spray tan, this includes oils, deodorants, perfumes, tight clothing, and any soaps. These could interfere with the spray tan product and completely ruin your developing tan.
Can I shower after a spray tan?
For a dark, rich color, you should shower 8 hours after your spray tan. If you are wanting a lighter tan, you can shower earlier. Just avoid using any soaps or body gels in the shower.
Remember that the spray tan might contain a bronzer, which could make your tan appear darker than it is, and this bronzer will be washed off after your first shower.
Can I use coconut oil as a moisturizer?
Coconut oil is a great moisturizer to use, it is natural and very caring to the skin. It will leave your skin hydrated, nourished and rejuvenated, holding in your spray tan color for longer, and with repeated use, it will help your spray tan fade evenly.
How often can I spray tan?
The number of times you spray tan will depend on your skin and how well you look after your spray tan. Generally, to maintain a constant tan, you should look to tan around 2-3 times per month. If you are wanting to tan that frequently, make sure you a pick a salon that ensures they use the best protects, to prevent your skin from drying and damage.
Lotions To Avoid For Spray Tans
For as many lotions there are to avoid for a spray tan, there are some that are absolutely perfect to help maintain your tanned glow.
Natural is always best, so try to choose a lotion that uses organic and natural ingredients over harmful ones whenever you can. Use your lotion daily, or even up to twice a day, straight after a shower to lock in as much moisture as possible, to ensure a golden, radiant and flawless looking spray tan.