Step 1 – Prep Your Skin
The number 1 thing that will make or break how your self-tan looks is how you prep skin before applying the tan. Unfortunately (for some), this requires planning ahead and the most important prep needs to be done 24 hours before tan-application. I know, this is kind of annoying, but trust me, it’s worth it.
The day before you are going to apply your tan, you need to exfoliate your skin. I do this using a face cloth and a gentle exfoliating body wash. Exfoliating your skin is going to remove all the dead skin cells that would otherwise soak up excessive amounts of tan, and will create a smooth canvas for the tan be applied upon.
While exfoliating, it is also the perfect time to remove any unwanted body hair. Removing hair 24 hours before tan is applied will give your pores the chance to close so they can avoid becoming clogged.
One you have exfoliated, it is important to apply a light layer of moisturiser over your skin to keep skin hydrated. This should be done at least 12 hours before applying your tan to avoid reducing the results.
Clean + Dry Skin
Finally, right before tan is applied, ensure your skin is clean, dry and free from any oils, deodorant or perfume. Moisturise any dry patches of skin (such as elbows, knees, feet and pigmentation spots) to allow for a flawless application. For a longer lasting tan, apply Bahama Bod Self Tan Preparation & Eraser all over your body.
Ok, your skin is ready to go. You’re ready for step 2.
Step 2 – Prepping Your Applicator
Choosing The Right Applicator
Your tan will be only go on smoothly and streak-free if you are using the right tools. For perfect application, it is recommended that you use a tanning mitt - this is a not a process best left to finger painting. A tanning mitt allows the tan to be distributed evenly across skin, and reduces excess build up on your hands.
My favourite tanning mitt is the Bahama Bod Luxury Mitt as it super soft to the touch and the thicker fabric provides more control.
Cleaning Your Mitt
Make sure your mitt is clean! You don’t want left over residue from the previous week’s tan on your mitt as this will impair your mitt’s ability to function at its best. Hand-wash your mitt by soaking it over night after tan has been applied, then washing it with hot soapy water the next day. I would avoid machine washing as this can damage the mitt and reduce its longitivtiy, and may stain other items if washed at the same time. Make sure you leave your mitt to fully air-dry before it is next used.
Cleaned your mitt? Step 3 is waiting!
Step 3 – Applying Your Tan
To ensure the tan you are pumping is out evenly pigmented, give your mousse a light shake before using. Pump 3-4 pumps directly onto your tanning mitt – too little mousse may cause unwanted streaks and leave spots bare.
Using long sweeping motions, apply the mousse directly to your body. It is recommended that you start with your legs, and work your way up your body until all your skin is covered. The colour guide technology allows you to see exactly where tan has (or has not been applied) so you can achieve even coverage all over.
To blend the mousse seamlessly, move the mitt in a circular motion across skin where required to ensure even coverage. Use the residue tan left on your mitt for face, elbows and knees.
Hot Tip: to ensure for even coverage on tricky areas such as your face, use a buffer brush as this will help smooth out the tan and create an even coating.
Step 4 – Post-Application
Wait around 10 minutes (or until tan is touch-dry) before dressing in dark, loose fitting clothing. Skin may be rinsed after 3-4 hours if you are a wanting a lighter tan. For a longer lasting, darker tan, leave your tan on for up to 6-8 hours (or overnight) before showering with warm water. Gently pat skin dry.
Enjoy your streak-free, perfectly golden tan!!
Wanting a deeper, darker tan? Re-apply Bahama Bod Self Tanning Mousse 30 minutes after initial application.