You’ve read the reviews and you’ve finally made your first self-tanner purchase. In your excitement, you grab an old towel, strip down, and start applying the self-tanner as evenly as you can. Hours later, you find yourself being a hot orange mess with the most embarrassing hand tan streaks you’ve ever seen in your life. What went wrong?
Chances are you didn’t think your tanning tools through. Just as a makeup artist invests in quality tools to produce the best results, self-tanning is more or less the same. While there are several tanning tools in the market, we deem one accessory as a crucial must-have for a flawless tan: the tanning mitt.
What are tanning mitts?
Tanning mitts will make your life easier in terms of application time and final tanning output. A tanning mitt has a larger surface area compared to your hand. This makes application a lot faster, which also gives you more time to blend the product evenly. This also allows for easier back application. Simply place the glove around the head of your exfoliating brush (or any similar accessory) and you are ready to apply the product onto hard-to-reach places.
To apply, add the right amount of self-tanner to your mitt and lather onto your body in sections. For face application, we recommend using a beauty blender to reach corners and tips accurately.
Okay, I’m convinced. How do I know which tanning mitt to buy?
Before we delve into this, we want to clarify something: exfoliating mitts are NOT the same as self-tanning mitts. You need to get the two separately. Exfoliating mitts will absorb the product onto your skin while tanning mitts are especially crafted to prevent the product from seeping through.
When picking out a tanning mitt, it is crucial that you test for one with soft or velvety material for two reasons: to prevent scratches on your skin and to ensure the smoothest application possible. You want to test for the lining fabric to make sure the product won’t seep through. Make sure that you go for one that is double-sided and is especially designed to blend tanning mousses and lotions.
Our recommendation: The Bondi Bodz Tan On Applicator Mitt
I already have a tanning mitt. How do I care for it?
Your glam skills are highly dependent on your products and tools, so it is important to know how to care for your tanning mitt. Like most beauty tools, the basics of maintenance are cleansing and storage. Make sure to wash your mitt with warm water and soap to wring off any leftover tanning product. This will prevent your glove from wearing and tearing easily, as well as avoid any possible discoloration. Make sure to rinse your gloves properly and to store them in a dry area.
Can I use gloves instead of tanning mitts?
Some self-proclaimed tanning “specialists” have claimed that gloves are better than tanning mitts, and our answer to that is a resounding no. Here are two reasons:
1. Gloves are not the most durable especially if you are using it with a lot of friction on the surface of your skin. The smallest hole tear will allow the mousse to seep through, which will leave orange spots on your hands. And as we always say, nothing says tanning rookie more than patchy and streaky hands.
2. Gloves are not absorbent, which means that any excess product from one pump will stay on the surface of the glove. Having that much product on your applicator will take longer to blend into the skin. It also increases the risk of not uneven and streaky application.