Got a big event coming up and your tan is refusing to work with your timeline? We totally feel you. Had a major tanning boo-boo and now you’re a sad, streaky mess? We’ve been there. Need a pick-me-up in the middle of a stressful week and are craving a fresh tan? Totally understandable. There are times when you just need to hit that tan refresh button.
Take out the guesswork in re-tanning by following our guide to wiping your self-tanner slate clean. Check out our easy tips below.
Get in that tub
If you have a tub at home, soaking in a warm bath mixed with baby oil is one of the best ways to get your tan to fade faster. The baby oil helps in breaking down the tanning agent (also known as DHA – if you’re not familiar with what that is, you can check our blog post on it here). If you want your tan to fade quicker, apply baby oil to your skin and let it soak for 30 to 60 minutes before climbing into the bath.
Once in the bath, exfoliate gently but firmly by using circular motions. This helps to slough off dead skin cells without excessively stressing and stretching your skin.
Shower your tan away
No tub? No problem – a good shower will be just as helpful in supercharging your sloughing process. Just as if you had a tub, prep your skin by applying baby oil all over your body and letting it sit for 30 to 60 minutes. With an exfoliating mitt or sugar scrub, gently slough away that old tan. If you’re using a scrub, you can also mix a little bit of oil into it before use.
Since your skin will not be as supple as it can get with a good soak, pay extra attention to areas that typically have rough and dry skin like knees, elbows and heels. Repeat several times until you are at your desired color.
Get help from tan-removing products
If your tan is a bit more stubborn than you expected (or if you are coming from a tanning disaster), there are tons of tan-removing products on the market from glycolic acids to oils. Just make sure to do your research before purchasing to avoid bigger disasters or extensive skin damage.
Do a quick sweep of your kitchen
Look no further as the answer to your tan problems may be right in front of you – that is, if you are facing your kitchen. When it comes to pesky streaks, reach for that good ol’ box of baking soda and mix two tablespoons with water to make a paste. Slather it on your skin and let it soak for a few minutes. Rinse thoroughly and voila – magic.
If you have lemons around the kitchen, mixing them with your favorite body scrub might help. A bit of caution: do a spot test before applying generously.
Other home items to experiment with are sugar and olive oil, whitening toothpaste, and apple cider or white vinegar. As always, do your spot tests diligently to see how the products react with your tan before giving the go signal to slough away.
Take the better routes for your face
The skin on your face requires more TLC than in any other area on your body, so we would caution using harsh ingredients on it. Instead, grab a good liquid exfoliator with BHAs or AHAs to help skin cell renewal take place quicker. Your retinol routine will also help fade your tan, so make sure to apply your serums diligently.
If you’re the active type, this is where you can go crazy. That pool chlorine that you’ve been avoiding post-tan? We encourage you to take as many laps as you would like. If you’re not a water baby, hitting up the gym as per usual or visiting a steam room works just as well.