What Advice to Give Clients to Prepare For A Spray Tan

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A spray tan is the perfect way for your clients to achieve the warm, summer glow we can usually only achieve on a holiday, but they might not know how to prepare. Other tanning solutions like sunbeds and sunbathing can damage your skin, leading to premature ageing and undesirable dark spots, making spray tans a healthier alternative.

Preparing before and after your tan can make all the difference to the bronze and duration of a spray tan, so be sure to advise your clients accordingly.

Preparing for Spray Tan

Even if you offer a top-of-the-range tanning solution, the preparation your client takes on the lead-up to the application can make it even better.

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Patch test

While all tanning solutions are dermatologically tested before use, there is a risk that your client’s skin could react negatively and experience irritation. A patch test will reveal this, so it’s recommended that your client has one at least 24 to 48 hours before their appointment.


Advise your client to exfoliate eight hours before their tan appointment. This helps to scrub off any dead skin cells from the surface of the skin and prevents them from shedding their bronzed glow prematurely. It will also stop the tan from looking patchy or uneven.


If your client wants to shave or wax beforehand, they need to do it at least 48 hours before the treatment is applied. Tanning can irritate the freshly shaven skin and seep into the open pores to create dark spots. Give your clients tips on how to shave without getting shaving rash as this can become further irritated.


Moisturiser is your client’s best friend before a spray tan so advise them to be liberal with it. This should be focused on areas prone to dryness such as the elbows and ankles.

On The Day of Spray Tan


Skin should be sweat-free before a tan as it can prevent the solution from being absorbed evenly so advise clients to avoid working out and to shower just before the appointment. This will allow for a more lasting bronze colour.

No lotions or barriers

You will also want the skin to be free from fragrances and other barriers, including deodorant and body cream. Oil and lotion can interfere with how the spray tan develops so only oil-free moisturiser should be applied to dry-prone areas.  

Be mindful of the weather

Something to keep in mind is the weather. Tan needs time to develop and rain will cause streaks in the solution, so remind clients to pack an umbrella and suitable clothing.

How to Make Spray Tan Last


The moisturising shouldn’t stop after the appointment. Moisturiser holds the tan for longer and maintains that bronzed glow so it should happen after every shower.

Avoid swimming and hot baths

Hot water and the chemicals in swimming pools can cause the skin to dry out and encourage it to shed.

Drink plenty of water

Water is the key to healthy skin. When your client stays hydrated, the tank will sink deeper into the skin and last for longer.

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