If you have an upcoming special occasion or a vacation, one of your priorities is how to make your skin glow. You might think staying longer under the Sun can give you the tan you want fast. But it is not the way to do it.
Exposing yourself longer to the sun can damage your skin, and you will surely regret it. Although you can get tan fast if you stay for hours in the sun, it is not safe. If you want to get a tan quickly, safely, and effectively, read this guide on how to get tan fast.
1. Using Self-Tanners for a Quick and Safe Tan
Self-tanning products, also known as sunless tanners, are the fastest and effective way to get the tan look you want without exposing yourself to the sun’s harmful effects.
The tan you can get from these sunless tanners typically lasts for 7 to 10 days, but it depends on how you take care of your tan. Self-tanning products are available in different forms sprays, towelettes, and mousses. You can apply these products directly to your skin.
Two Categories of Self-Tanners
The self-tanners are categorized into two – instant tanners and gradual tanners:
- Instant Tanners contain dyes that provide results instantly. After a few hours of applying the instant tanner, you will see the changes on your skin.
- Gradual Tanners DHA or Dihydroxyacetone is a color additive that is usually the main ingredient of most sunless tanning products in the market. If you apply it on clean, dry skin, it will react to the skin’s deceased cells and temporarily provide a tan color.
What You Need:
- Self-tanner products
- Tanning mitt (optional)
- Gradual self-tanner (optional)
- Body bronzer
Steps on Applying Instant Self-tanner
- Prepare everything you need
Ensure that you have chosen the best self-tanner that is not just effective but also safe for your skin. Some brands claim to be very effective, but after applying, you will be disappointed.
- Preparing your skin
This is very important as the results will depend on how you prepare your skin. Exfoliate your skin first and if you need to do some shaving and waxing, do it before applying the product. If you do this after using the tanner, your tan color may fade quickly.
Do not forget to moisturize the part of your skin that are usually dry, like the elbows, ankles, and knees. Putting moisturizer will prevent the formation of dry patches. If you apply without moisturizing the dry skin, it may absorb the tanning product and result in uneven color.
As compared to gradual tanners, instant tanners usually dry faster and may leave coloring or residue on your hands. If you have tanning mitts, then it’s the better. Otherwise, you can wash your hands right away after applying the product to wash off the tanning residue on your palm.
- Allow the tanning product to dry
Allow the tanning product to dry thoroughly on your skin before you go outdoors. This will ensure you will have an even tan. Don’t get too excited to go out and flaunt your glowing skin.
- Apply gradual self-tanner
This step is optional but if you want to extend the result to last longer, apply a gradual self-tanner. The product will prolong your tan and, at the same time, moisturize your skin. You can also use a body bronzer if you want to add some extra shimmer and enhance your tan.
2. Natural Way of Getting Tan
Of course, there is a natural way of getting the tan that you want fast. The following steps will help you get tan fast.
What You need:
- Low SPF lotion or oil
- Natural oils
Steps on Applying Instant Self-tanner
- Applying Lotion with Low SPF
You don’t just go out under the sun to get the tan that you want. Applying a low SPF lotion protects your skin from the powerful rays of the sun. You can use either aerosol sprays, oil mists, rub-on lotions, and oil rubs.
- Applying Natural Oil
If you don’t want to use the oil that you can buy in the market, you can use natural oils to attract the sun and provide you with the glow you want. Use these natural tan enhancers before going out, and do not forget to wash off the remaining tanner in your hands.
- Expose yourself to the Sun
Make sure that you move your body frequently so you will get an even tan. You must expose your body to the sun equally. It is best to bring with you a timer so you know when to move your body to the other side. Start with your back, followed by your left side, your stomach, and your right side. Change the position of your legs and arms most often so it will have an even color.
As you move your body, you also need to transfer the position of your towel or your chair. Instead of lying around all day, you can do other activities like playing games. Just make sure you expose more skin and less clothing.
- Best Time to Go Out Between 10Am and 4PM
If you need to get tan fast, hit outside when the sun is strongest. But not to the extend that you will burn your skin. Make sure when it is enough. If you intend to get tan all over your body, get naked if you can.
Tips on Attracting the Sun
There are several ways to attract the sun rays. This technique is a bit traditional, but it is very effective. To magnify and focus the sun on your skin, you can use some reflective products like a reflective towel or reflective sunscreen. Place the sunscreen at your waist and then tilt it around at a 45-degree angle until the body hits the sunlight.
You can lay on the water using a floating device. Water attracts and reflects sunlight. Therefore, lying on a floatie in the swimming pool can help you attract the sunlight you need.
It is also best to reapply the low SPF lotion to keep your skin protected from sunburn. After tanning, apply an aloe-based moisturizer to hydrate your skin and seal in the bronze tanning color you achieve.
Using Spray and Airbrushing Tanning Products
This method requires a professional to carry out the process. The product uses the same active ingredient DHA found in self-tanning products. However, it is not done at home or by yourself. It would help if you have a tanning professional spray or machine to color your entire body front and back. You can develop tan skin after 4 to 8 hours.
The results you can get from airbrushing and spray will depend on the product quality and application manner. It has the same effect as the self-tanner lotions and mousses. If you want something easy in your pocket, the self-tanners are more affordable and easier to use.
Avoid Tanning Beds
Using tanning beds is also an effective way to get tan fast, but it is not recommended. It uses ultraviolet light bulbs to tan the skin the same way the sun does. However, it emits harmful UVA radiation that is 3 to 6 times powerful than natural sunlight. This will hasten the formation of melatonin in your skin at a faster rate. The tanning beds may provide the tan fast, but it also the most harmful to your skin.
According to the Skin Care Foundation reports, people who undergo the tanning beds are most likely to develop melanoma. It is a form of skin cancer. And because of this, we do not recommend the use of tanning beds. But it is worth mentioning here to give you advice.
It is still best to achieve the tan color that you want naturally. However, you need to be careful in exposing yourself to direct sunlight. Keep in mind the protection that you need to do before going out in the sun. Before trying other methods, you should consult an expert first.
David Nilsen is the former editor of Fourth & Sycamore. He is a member of the National Book Critics Circle. You can find more of his writing on his website at davidnilsenwriter.com and follow him on Twitter as @NilsenDavid.