Step-by-Step Guide: Applying Fake Tan for Beginners

Achieve a Natural, Sun-Kissed Glow: Step-by-Step Guide to Perfect Self-Tanning

Achieving a sun-kissed glow without exposing your skin to harmful UV rays is easy with fake tanning products. However, if you’re new to self-tanning, the process can seem a bit daunting. This step-by-step guide will help beginners apply fake tan flawlessly, ensuring a natural and even finish.

1. Choose the Right Tanning Product

Types of Tanning Products

Before you start, it’s essential to select the right tanning product for your skin type and desired outcome. Here are some common types:

  • Self-Tanning Lotions: Provide gradual tanning and are easy to control.

  • Self-Tanning Mousses: Offer quick drying and are great for instant results.

  • Self-Tanning Sprays: Ideal for hard-to-reach areas.

  • Self-Tanning Wipes: Convenient for travel and quick touch-ups.

Shade Selection

Choose a shade that complements your natural skin tone. If you’re fair-skinned, start with a light to medium shade to avoid looking too dark. Those with medium to dark skin tones can opt for darker shades for a more pronounced tan.

2. Preparation


Exfoliation is crucial for removing dead skin cells and ensuring an even application. Use a gentle exfoliating scrub or a body brush to exfoliate your entire body, focusing on rough areas like elbows, knees, and ankles.

Shave or Wax

Shave or wax at least 24 hours before applying the tan to allow your skin to calm down and avoid irritation. This will also prevent the tan from clinging to hair follicles, which can create a patchy appearance.


Apply a light, oil-free moisturizer to dry areas such as elbows, knees, ankles, and any other rough patches. This helps to create a barrier and prevent these areas from absorbing too much tan, which can lead to uneven results.

3. Application

Use a Tanning Mitt

A tanning mitt is essential for a streak-free application and to protect your hands from staining. Pump or squeeze the product onto the mitt, rather than directly onto your skin.

Start with Your Legs

Begin applying the tan from your legs and work your way up. This prevents any creasing or marks that can occur when bending over to reach your legs if you start from the top.

Circular Motions

Apply the tan in long, sweeping circular motions. This ensures an even distribution of the product and helps avoid streaks. Blend well around the knees and ankles, using any excess product on the mitt for these areas.

Apply to the Upper Body

Continue the application on your upper body, using the same circular motions. Pay special attention to areas that are often missed, such as the back of your arms and neck. For your back, you may need assistance or use a back applicator.

Face and Hands

Use a smaller amount of product for your face, and consider using a face-specific tanning product. Apply in gentle, circular motions, blending into the hairline and down your neck. For your hands, use a small amount of tan and blend carefully around the fingers and nails.

4. Post-Application Care

Drying Time

Prior to dressing, let the tan finish drying. This usually takes around 10-15 minutes. Wear loose, dark clothing to avoid transferring the product onto your clothes and to prevent any lines or marks from tight clothing.

Avoid Water

Stay away from water, sweating, or any activities that can cause you to perspire for at least 6-8 hours. This ensures that the tan develops evenly without being disrupted.

Rinse Off

After the development time (usually indicated on the product instructions), rinse off the tan in the shower using lukewarm water. Avoid using soap or scrubbing your skin. Pat your skin dry gently with a towel.

5. Maintaining Your Tan

Moisturize Daily

Keep your skin hydrated by moisturizing daily. This helps prolong the life of your tan and prevents it from fading unevenly.

Avoid Exfoliating

Avoid exfoliating your skin until you’re ready to remove the tan and reapply. Gentle washing and moisturizing are key to maintaining an even tan.


For a long-lasting tan, consider doing touch-ups every few days. Use gradual tanning lotions or top up with a light application of your chosen product to keep your tan looking fresh.

6. Removing Your Tan


When your tan starts to fade and you’re ready to reapply, gently exfoliate your skin to remove any remaining product. This ensures a smooth base for your next application.

Use Tan Remover

There are specific tan removal products available that can help in breaking down and removing stubborn tan. These products are designed to be gentle on the skin while effectively removing old tan layers.

Start Fresh

Once your skin is exfoliated and free of old tan, follow the preparation steps to ensure your skin is ready for a fresh application.

Achieve a Flawless Fake Tan with Confidence and Care

Applying fake tan can seem intimidating for beginners, but with the right preparation, application techniques, and aftercare, you can achieve a beautiful, natural-looking tan without the risks associated with sun exposure.

Choose the right product for your skin type, follow the step-by-step guide, and enjoy a sun-kissed glow year-round. Remember, practice makes perfect, and with each application, you’ll gain confidence and skill in achieving a flawless fake tan.

This content was first published by KISS PR Brand Story. Read here >> Step-by-Step Guide: Applying Fake Tan for Beginners

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