How to get the Perfect Fake Tan

Summer is officially here- at least in the world of academics, if not the actual calendar. With this summer semester comes better parking on campus, scorching walks to classes, beach days, sundresses and lots of fun in the sun!

Kristen and I are excited to get started, but as our moms always tell us, safety first. There’s not a lot you can do to avoid the sun’s glaring rays in Florida- you can put on sunscreen to your heart’s content but there will always be sunburn just around the corner. Couple that with the fact that Kristen and I love being tan, and you’ve really got a problem!

It’s not news that sunbathing is harmful to your health. Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. Just one indoor tanning session increases users’ chances of developing melanoma by 20 percent. Plus, tanning is not only bad for your health, it also causes your skin to age! More than 90 percent of the visible changes commonly attributed to skin aging are caused by the sun. Yikes!


Get us outta here!

Although we fully plan in getting our beach time in this summer, in the spirit of safety, we thought we would experiment to get the best fake tan! Then we can feel free to slather on SPF 75 and not worry about blinding people with our paleness. After trying lots of fake tanners and lots of application techniques, here is our step-by-step guide to getting the best fake tan!


Let’s do this the healthier way, shall we?

Step One:

The day before you plan on using your self tanning lotion, use a heavy body butter after your shower. This will help hydrate your skin and smooth out any rough, dry patches. If you skip this step, these dry patches will absorb more of the tanning lotion than the rest of your skin and leave you blotchy.

Step Two:

On the day you plan to use your self tanning lotion, exfoliate thoroughly in the shower. You can do this by using a loofah rather aggressively, or you can make your own exfoliator by mixing equal parts honey and sugar. Scrub the honey-sugar mixture on your skin with circular motions while in the shower.

Step Three:

After drying yourself completely (drips will cause the self tanning lotion to streak), thoroughly wet a washcloth and set it aside. Apply a light cream to your elbows, knees, and ankles to avoid these dry spots from absorbing too much self tanner.

Step Four:

Apply your self tanning lotion over your whole body, rubbing it in with circular motions.

If you want the whole tan in one go, we suggest True Blue Spa Strike Gold Bronzing Self Tanning Lotion. You’ll get several shades darker in just a couple hours! With this option, you’ll need to reapply about once a week.


If you want a gradual self tanner, we recommend Jergens Natural Glow Daily Moisturizer. Apply this after every shower and in about a week you’ll have a natural looking tan! Once you’ve reached the optimal tan, you should apply this moisturizer about twice a week.


Step Five:

After you’re done applying the self tanning lotion, use the wet washcloth to wipe off your palms and the insides of your fingers. Tan palms is a sure-fire sign of a fake tan, so let’s avoid them. Don’t dress until it has completely dried, or your clothes will get brown.

Ta-da! You’re all finished! We hope this helps- happy tanning!

Check out some of our other beauty shenanigans below!

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