The WRUW Girl’s Guide to Spray Tanning 101

As Mother Nature has reached its end point of warm, sunny months, we are now entering into what we like to call the cold tundra. Therefore, that can only mean one thing: spray tans. No matter if you’re a spray tan fanatic or prefer to avoid the process, it’s always valuable to seek some helpful tips just in case you one day find yourself in a spray tan booth or an exclusive salon. Keep reading to see how WRUW Girl Hanna pulls off that summer glow during the cold winter months.

Here’s how you’ll need to prep:

1. A nice, relaxing shower

Hop in the shower or bathtub to unwind and cleanse. No need to wash your hair though because you’re going to throw it up into a bun while you spray tan, anyways! More specifically, try to use an antibacterial body wash to scrub away with your shower loofah.

2. Shave

Let’s face it, shaving takes work and dedication, but when is the last time you’ve seen someone with a glamorous glow and legs that resemble Chewbacca? Never.

3. Exfoliate & DON’T MOISTURIZE!

This step is vital. If it was possible to include a flashing, red light on this step, you’d see one! You must invest in a good exfoliator. I always find myself picking up Tree Hut Shea Sugar Scrub at Ulta because it’s available at a college-friendly price and it’s effective. After exfoliating, DO NOT MOISTURIZE! A moisturizer prior to your spray tan will create an uneven glow – back away from your moisturizer.

4. No “deo for your b-o”

Gross, right? But, if you apply deodorant prior to a spray tan it will also cause unevenness under your arms. So yes, this process is a commitment but it will be worth it in the end, I promise. The goal here is to basically enter the spray tan booth without anything on your body.

5. Invest in some cotton balls? Yes, you heard right.

Some of you may be thinking, “Really Hanna? I think you may be taking this to the extreme here.” But let me forewarn you, if you take a cotton ball/pad, split it in half and put it slightly in your nostrils and in your ears, this will block the spray tan fumes from entering. Is this step 100 percent necessary? No, but I’d rather not have an outline of spray tan on my nostrils.

6. Lip Balm

This one’s pretty simple; apply any type of lip balm to your lips so that you don’t have an orange pout.

7. Prime!

If you want to get the most out of your spray tan a primer is something worth investing in. Apply this right before you enter the spray tan booth! It will help absorb your new glow to its fullest potential. I like to use California Tan’s Color Maximizer.

8. After your first shower, you must moisturize consistently!

At this point, your newly bronzed look is in full-effect and you’re ready to shower after letting your tan sit for 4-6 hours. After you shower, it is vital that you lather up with some moisturizer. An oldie but goodie is the Hempz Original formula. Continue to moisturize throughout the next week, 2-3 times a day to avoid a “chalky” look.

Bonus Tip:

Arbonne’s Liquid Sunshine self-tanner is a great and safe alternative as well. Your skin will feel healthy and hydrated with its refreshing scent in just two hours! Its quick-dry formula is perfect to apply before a night out! I often find myself lathering up my legs if I decide to wear a dress for the evening.

So, there you have it! I hope you all found these tips useful and now have the confidence to step away from the harmful tanning bed and faux tan in a safer, more effective manner. If you do try a spray tan, make sure to share it on the WRUW app and keep checking back for more posts from the WRUW girls!

Written by: Hanna Leadstrom