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How To Apply Self-Tanner

For many, sun-kissed skin in the summer months seems to be a must.  Leaving the fair-skinned and the steadfast sun screen wearers with only one option for this desired skin tone – sunless tanner. Now the question is, how do we get the perfect tan out of a bottle? For smooth, even color it’€™s important to follow the rules of application:

  1. Prep your skin. For a streak-free tan, start with clean, smooth skin. Wash, exfoliate, shave and pat your skin completely dry. When exfoliating, pay extra attention to the areas that tend to have the driest skin: knees, elbows and anklebones.
  2. Use gloves. This will keep your palms from staining and also give you a smooth “applicator” to work with. Disposable gloves are ideal.
  3. Fix streaks and color flaws. Never fear, there are tricks to removing and evening self-tanner in a pinch.
  4. Work from the bottom up. Apply the self-tanner to your feet, ankles, legs, thighs, abs, chest and arms. Use a small amount and blend in a circular motion.
  5. Go easy on the face and neck. If you’€™re using sunless tanner on your face and neck, choose one formulated for the face or mix the product you’ve used on your body with a light facial moisturizer.
  6. Do your hands last. Remove your gloves. Apply a hand sanitizer to your palms so they won’t absorb any formula, then put a very small dab on the tops of hands and blend.
  7. Buff. With a slightly damp washcloth, buff any areas that tend to grab too much color, such as elbows, knees, anklebones and in between the fingers and toes.
  8. Be patient. Read the instructions on how long to wait before you get dressed or go to bed so you don’t transfer color to your clothes or sheets.
        • For streaks try a baking soda blend: Mix lemon juice and baking soda to create a paste that can be rubbed over any streaks to help lift the color.
        • For too much color bathe in baby oil: If your tan turns out to be a lot darker than you were hoping, drench your skin in baby oil, and leave it on for 10 minutes. This causes the top layer of color to loosen and lift, leaving your skin less “tan” than it initially appeared.
  • Maintain your tan. Use moisturizer every day.
  • Start over. When your sunless tan fades, always exfoliate all remnants before reapplying.
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