What to do Before You Tan: How Best to Prepare for Spray Tans and At-Home Sunless Tanning | by Kona Tanning Company

Skin naturally replaces itself every four weeks, which means twenty-five percent of skin is exfoliated away every seven days.  Sunless tanning affects only the top 25 percent of skin, so once these cells slough away, they take your gorgeous sunless tan with them. You'll want to remove as many dead skin cells as you can prior to receiving your airbrush treatment, preferably with an oil-free, non-abrasive sugar scrub.  As a beauty editor, Kona Katie was prive to the newest and most notable exfoliating products, and highly recommends the MicrodermaMitt, found in our store and online boutique.  Removing loose, dead, dry skin cells that could prevent an even application of sunless solution will improve and extend your tanning results.

How Best to Prepare for Spray Tans and At-Home Sunless Tanning
  • Before sunless tanning, your skin should be clean and dry, free of any oil or soap residue that could interfere with your tan.  Avoid bar soap, and body washes containing moisturizing beads or oils.
  • Apply minimal deodorant (do not use Secret, Degree or Mitchum deodorants until after the initial shower) or perfumes to skin prior to tanning, and shave or wax the day before.  Shave legs with and against the grain for best results.  Avoid mineral makeup the day you tan, as it reacts with the cosmetic bronzer.
  • Before you tan, remove any jewelry that would leave an unwanted tan line, including watches and necklaces.  You'll want to avoid these until you've had a chance to rinse in the shower.  Watches encourage perspiration to build up under the band, which can stop the development process of the tan in that area, leaving a "tan line."
  • Select a dark bathing suit or underwear to wear while being sprayed, though our female clients may opt for no tan lines. Also remember to bring dark-colored, loose-fitting clothing and flip-flops to wear home.  (Think:  loose yoga wear!)
  • Airbrush tanning enriches the colors in tattoos!  Gently wipe off tattoos after tanning to make them even more vibrant.
  • After your tan, do not apply deodorant or moisturizing agents for at least four hours. Although the likelihood for an allergic reaction is very small, a patch test is recommended for persons who have a known sensitivity to sunless products or their ingredients (including fragrances, sugarcane, and beets).
  • After your Kona sunless treatment, wait at least five hours before bathing or exercise. Our tanning solution takes 12 hours to complete its development process, and for best results, clients should bathe once the development process has finished.  However, if rinsing early, make absolutely sure that you rinse your entire body off - twice! - because any tanning solution that you miss in the shower will continue to develop, which can lead to streaks.  For best results, rub your palms over your entire body, just to be on the safe side.
The MicrodermaMitt isn't just excellent for preparing for a spray tan - continuous use reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, treats and prevents blemishes and acne, helps eliminate ingrown hair and razor bumps, helps fade age spots, and smoothes away small bumps on arms and thighs (Keratosis Pilaris).  All in all, it's one of our favorite products, and best sellers among our clients and family!

Check out our Frequently Asked Questions page for more information on preparing for a spray tan.  

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