How to Self Tan in 2018. Tips and Tricks. From Pasty to Bronze!

Tuesday, June 19, 2018


Exfoliating the skin before self tanning is a step that is SO important. It helps the tanner adhere to the skin best and reduces the tanner getting blotchy and streaky. 

what to use to exfoliate skin

I use an exfoliator pad I got from Target. It's textured but not too abrasive for the skin. I use this ALL over my body to really make sure the tanner has a smooth surface to stick too. When exfoliating I show a lot of love to my knees, elbows, and feet since self tanner tends to stick to those areas the most. I wait to exfoliate until the END of my shower so my skin has softened up.

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Since I tan my face, I do exfoliate my face as well. Instead of using an exfoliator pad, I just an exfoliator wash for my face that has beads to remove all the dead skin from my face and neck as well. The one I used from the above video is from Juice Beauty. 


Shaving is a step I like to do the night before I know I'm going to be self tanning. Since I've been self tanning for YEARS, I know that if I apply self tanner immediately after I shave the tanner tends to sink in to the old hair follicles creating dark dots all over my legs (not cute haha). I shave the night before to minimize the appearance of all those dark dots on my legs. For super smooth skin, I always shave with conditioner, yes hair conditioner. It doesn't have to be anything expensive, a cheap Suave conditioner does the trick! 


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I ONLY apply lotion to my hands, feet, elbows and, knees. Showing special attention to these areas helps the tanner from getting dark and prevents it from being obvious you have self tanner on. I use Alba Botanica Coconut Rescue found at Target. It's important to make sure the lotion is completely absorbed into the skin before moving on to applying self tanner. Also use a lotion that isn't oily to avoid streaking. 


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I use two things when I apply my self tanner. A velvet tanning mitt and a foundation brush. The tanning mitt helps blend out the lines and also prevents your hands from getting dark. The brush helps smaller areas and areas that tend to crease. 

Then I apply about 2-3 pumps for each area that I work in. Also, I work in one small area at a time. I use circular motions, slightly overlapping the last area I worked in (think of vacuuming? lol).  I like using a tanner that has a color guard so I can see where I'm applying the product.

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The product I'm using here is called Skinny Glow by Bikini Bod. I like this particular tanner because it gives me a deep very natural tan. It doesn't make me the slightest bit orange and it doesn't scream "I HAVE TANNER ON!" (thanks to my tanning skills too of course LOL). It's one of the best self tanners I've tried and for the price you won't find anything better. Also, Skinny Glow contains Guarana and Caffeine to help tone problem areas and help reduce cellulite.

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Since I don't always have someone to tan my back, I have found that using a towel is my best friend. No special gadgets, just a good ole towel (maybe an old one is best). I apply the tanner right in the middle of the towel and just move back and forth until I can feel theres no more, then repeat. This is very easy and very effective! 


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Here's where the foundation brush comes in. I apply 1 pump to the brush and work in small areas at a time until the self tanner is blended in. Using a foundation brush is great for your face, neck, ears, behind your ears, knuckles, ankles, feet and toes. All small areas that are hard to get to. When it comes to my knuclkes and any areas where there's folds, I stretch out that area so it's not white when I bend my fingers. The foundation brush I'm using is a 957 Foundation Brush from Bdellium Tools.


The waiting game. Honestly I like to wait 8 hours. I apply in the morning, then rinse off before bed. It really depends on the tanner. For this specific tanner I use, you only have to wait 3 hours for optimal results. 

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To keep your tan on the longest, it's best to not exfoliate or scrub your skin until your ready to reapply or remove your tan all together. Self tanner typically lasts 5-7 days before reapplication.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask! 

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