Self Tan Checklist: A Simple Guide To Self Tans At Home

Achieving a beautiful, sun-kissed glow can be as simple as applying a self-tanner at home. However, proper preparation and application techniques are essential to avoid any mishaps or uneven results. To help you achieve the perfect self-tan, we've created a checklist of essential steps to follow before and during the application process. From exfoliation to blending techniques, this checklist will ensure that you achieve an even, natural-looking tan every time.

1. Exfoliate before applying self-tanner

Use a gentle exfoliator to remove dead skin cells and create a smooth base for your self-tanner. This will help ensure an even, streak-free application.

2. Moisturise your skin

Dry skin can cause self-tanner to appear patchy and uneven. Make sure to moisturise your skin with a lightweight, oil-free lotion before applying self-tanner.

3. Choose the right formula

There are many different types of self-tanners on the market, from lotions and mousses to sprays and drops. Consider your skin type and your desired level of colour to choose the best formula for you.

2. Start with a lighter shade

If you're new to self-tanning, start with a lighter shade to avoid any mishaps. You can always build up to a deeper shade once you've mastered the application technique.

3. Use a tanning mitt or gloves

To avoid staining your hands, use a tanning mitt or gloves to apply self-tanner. This will also help ensure an even application.

4. Apply in circular motions

When applying self-tanner, use circular motions to blend the product into your skin. Be sure to cover all areas, including your face, neck, and ears.

5. Go easy on dry areas

Dry areas such as your elbows, knees, and ankles tend to absorb more self-tanner. Use a lighter touch in these areas to avoid any streaks or uneven colour.

6. Wait before getting dressed

Wait at least 10-15 minutes before getting dressed after applying self-tanner to avoid any staining on your clothes.

7. Don't shower or swim for at least 6-8 hours

It takes time for self-tanner to develop fully, so avoid showering or swimming for at least 6-8 hours after application to ensure the best results.

8. Maintain your tan

To make your tan last longer, moisturise regularly and touch up any areas that may have faded with a self-tanning spray or lotion.

    Remember, practice makes perfect when it comes to self-tanning. Don't be discouraged if your first few attempts aren't perfect – with these tips and a bit of patience, you'll be a self-tanning pro in no time!

    Top Self Tanning Brands

    Sally Hansen

    Sally Hansen are known for their amazing line of airbrush legs sprays. A strong consideration to getting that perfect glow on your legs.

    sally hansen


    Trusted by households across the UK. Bellamianta formulas make self tanning effortless and stunning.



    Palmers bronze lotions can help you get that ever glow skin. Featuring cocoa butter and coconut oil, these make for highly skin moisturising self tanners.

    palmers bronze

    Way To Beauty

    As stated on their brand, their self tanning formulas are must haves for those looking for streak free and natural looking glow.

    way to beauty

    Self Tan FAQs

    Is self-tanning safe for all skin types?

    Self-tanning is generally safe for all skin types, but it's important to choose a self-tanner that is appropriate for your skin type to avoid any adverse reactions. Those with sensitive skin should choose a self-tanner that is hypoallergenic and free from harsh chemicals.

    Can self-tanning cause skin damage?

    No, self-tanning does not cause skin damage as it does not involve UV rays. However, it's important to choose a reputable product and follow proper application techniques to avoid any adverse reactions.

    How long does a self-tan last?

    A self-tan typically lasts 5-7 days, but this can vary depending on the formulation and individual skin type. It's important to properly maintain the tan by moisturising regularly and avoiding activities that can cause the tan to fade quickly.

    Can self-tanning products be used on the face?

    Yes, self-tanning products can be used on the face, but it's important to choose a product that is specifically formulated for the face and to avoid the eye area.

    Can self-tanning products be removed?

    Yes, self-tanning products can be removed with exfoliation, but it may take several days for the tan to fade completely. There are also self-tanner removers available that can help to speed up the process.