For many of us, self-tanner is a way of life. Something we happily commit to every week to achieve an all-over sun-kissed glow – and a healthy boost in confidence! However, even with the best self-tanning prods, things don’t always go to plan. And the Oompa Loompa-esque streaky and blotchy colour that comes from a tanning job gone wrong can be absolutely cringeworthy!
Thankfully, choosing the right product and prepping your skin will go a long way towards preventing self-tanning disasters. But, because bad tans aren’t always 100% avoidable, it’s important to know the things you can do to remove your tan ASAP!
Lucky for you, that’s where we come in. In this article, we’ll outline eight reliable methods that will help you remove your self-tanner fast. Read on to learn how to say ‘so long’ to orange skin, streaks and other self-tanning disasters!
1. Baby Oil
When you’ve made a bronzing booboo, we recommend reaching for the baby oil. Baby oil will essentially plump your skin and enhance exfoliation – which will be your next step. Raw oils like coconut, olive, or sunflower will work in a pinch, but be sure to pick up baby oil if you want the best results.
When it’s time to remove your self-tanner, simply slather your skin with the baby oil and leave it on for 30-40 minutes. Then rinse it off in the shower using a loofah or washcloth. Once you hop out of the shower, you’ll likely notice that the colour of your self-tanner has gone down a shade or two (woohoo!). And if you’ve used a gradual tanning product? It might even be gone entirely!
2. Baking Soda and Lemon Juice
This DIY solution is great because you’ll likely have these items in your fridge or pantry already, meaning you can quickly and easily erase your tanning mistakes. One thing to note, however, is that this quick fix won’t completely get rid of your tan – it’ll only fade it a little. If you just look a little too orange, that may work for you. However, if you have streaks or spotting, you may need to do this a couple of times or opt for a more heavy-hitting method.
To make the solution, mix lemon juice, a little baking soda and a small amount of baby oil together and let it sit on your skin for 5-10 minutes. Then rinse off the solution with a washcloth or loofah and check out the results.
3. Whitening Toothpaste
Toothpaste is one of the best multi-taskers in your home. And – yup, you guessed it – it can be used to help remove self-tanner! One of the active ingredients of whitening toothpaste is sodium bicarbonate, which is formulated to whiten the teeth. However, at a pinch it can also be used to lift uneven patches of faux tan.
To use toothpaste to remove your self-tanner, we recommend applying it directly to the skin but only in small areas, like in between your fingers or on your palms. Leave it on for around 10 minutes, then rinse it off with a washcloth. Note: It’s not recommended that you apply this treatment more than once as you might end up irritating your skin.
4. Self-Tanner Removal Products
DIY solutions aren’t for everyone, and if you fall into this camp you’ll be happy to know there are a few products on the market worth trying. Each product has its pros and cons, so be sure to do your research before deciding which you’ll go for. Here are some of the most highly rated self-tan removers to take a look at.
- St. Tropez Tan Remover Prep and Maintain Mousse
- Tanologist Tan Eraser Plus Prime
- Model Co. Exfoliating Self Tan Remover Soap
5. A Pool, Hot Tub, or Sauna
If you’ve applied a particularly stubborn fake tanner, you’ll want to go for a swim, soak or sweat sesh. Opening up your pores is a great way for your skin to let go of your tanning product, so if you’re not having luck with other removal solutions, it won’t hurt to give these methods a go. They’re also pretty relaxing ways to spend your time, so in terms of self-care, this may be a real win-win.
6. Sugar Scrub
The key to getting rid of self-tanner is to exfoliate it away, and what better way to exfoliate (and get soft, supple skin in the process!) than to use a sugar scrub? In addition to the coarse sugar that these products use, they also often contain oil, which is another great ingredient for breaking down a fake tan.
There are plenty of DIY recipes for sugar scrubs, but the basic formula is one part oil to two parts sugar. You can use either white or brown; just be sure that the sugar is gritty and not too fine. Or you can buy a sugar scrub that is proven to work on all skin types, like the Coco & Eve Body Buffing Sugar.
7. Hair Removal Cream
Hair removal cream may seem like an odd choice for fake tan removal, but hear us out. These products work by breaking down the bonds in body hair’s keratin, which also serves to exfoliate the skin and remove the top layer. Meaning? It’ll likely take your botched tanning attempt with it!
To use hair removal cream, apply a layer with your hands and let it sit on your skin for half of the recommended time. Then rinse it off gently, wiping with a microfibre cloth or similarly soft fabric to reduce the risk of irritation.
8. Exfoliating Mitt
Scrubs aren’t the only type of exfoliator that can help remove a fake tan – exfoliating mitts are great too. All you need to do is jump into a hot shower and exfoliate in circular motions using your favourite mitt (naturally, we’re partial to the Coco & Eve Deluxe Exfoliating Mitt). After doing this, you’ll notice that your streaks are significantly faded, which can make it easier to reapply your self-tanner.
When It’s Time To Reapply, Try Our Bali Bronzing Foam
If an application doesn’t work out, you shouldn’t give up the product entirely. Getting a smooth, even tan takes time, patience and a bit of practice – but once you’ve perfected your technique, you’ll love your beautiful bronzed skin!
When you’re ready to brave self-tanner again, try Coco & Eve’s Bali Bronzing Foam. Easy to use, fast-acting and kind to your skin, our mango and guava scented mousse comes in three shades and smells AHmazing (unlike so many self-tanners we could mention!).
Or, for even better results next tanning sesh, try our Sunny Honey Bali Bronzing Bundle! The ultimate tanning companion, it comes with everything you’ll need to get an even tan without the fear of streaking of orange tones. It even comes with a Kabuki brush so you can get perfect coverage on tricky areas like your face, hands, feet and ears. Trust us – you’ll love the results (and you won’t need to use these tan removal tips at all)!
Edited by: Vidhya