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How To: Apply Self-Tanner Like A Pro

Whether you're pale AF and need at least two weeks in the sun to get some color, or you're quarantining like us and haven't been able to catch any rays from your balcony, then it's probably a good idea to get your fake tan game on. Not only is it a great distraction from being bored at home, but it also makes you feel prettier and warmer, all the while being better for your skin (goodbye, harmful UVA and UVB rays that cause aging and permanent damage!). We might have to spend our summer indoors, but that doesn't mean we can't look the part! Today, we're going to give you some tips to achieve a foolproof, glowing tan:
 1. Know which formula to choose:
It might be a little overwhelming having to choose between so many brands of self-tanner and the different formulas they come in. Pro-tip: choose according to your skin type. If you have oily skin: stay away from creams and oils, try using a mousse formula instead. If you have dry skin: make sure you find a formula that is also moisturizing, since self-tanners tend to be drying. Another important tip is to make sure that the self-tanner you're applying on your face is actually meant for your face! These products must say "face" or "face and body", making them safe for use on your face, which is more delicate than the rest of your body.
2. Exfoliate!
If you're a more experienced self-tanner then you know that exfoliation is a must. However, did you know you need to do it ahead of time? In order to get that natural, seamless color, you should be exfoliating every day for at least two to three days before tanning. This is important because it removes all of the dead skin cells that contribute to blotchy fake tans. If you only exfoliate once, then chances are you're not removing all of the dead skin cells. Another plus? Exfoliated skin will also help your tan last longer. We love making homemade exfoliating scrubs by mixing coconut oil (our favorite brand is Conscious Coconut!) and instant coffee (it smells delicious too!).
3. Stop! Wait a minute:
Do not apply self-tanner right after you shower. You should shower before applying, just make sure to wait a little bit. This is because when you're fresh out of the shower, your skin is more absorptive because your pores are opened, and if you apply self-tanner right away then the product will likely deposit in your pores, making it look like dots or freckles along your skin.
Are you in a rush? It's ok, we've been there. If you have to apply it ASAP, then run ice-cold water over your skin for at least 15 seconds to prevent the speckled appearance. Make sure your skin is completely dry! Also avoid applying moisturizer before self-tanner since it can act as a barrier and prevent the tanner from coming out evenly.
4. Avoid stained palms and soles!
The biggest give away that you're not a self-tanning pro? Orange-stained palms and feet. Your goal is never to look like an Oompa Loompa, so here's how you can avoid it: apply fragrance-free, non-oily, fast-absorbing moisturizer only to your hands and feet. Make sure it's been completely absorbed before you start tanning and you should be good to go! 
Another fool-proof move is to wash your hands immediately after application. This prevents staining them orange. In order to get that seamless blend, try using a makeup brush to blend the areas around your hands and wrists to that there's no tell-tale line between tanned and natural!
5. Start at the bottom
If you start applying from your feet upwards, then you avoid bending over after applying self-tanner from the top downwards and causing creases that will be embarrassingly visible after the color develops. Start on your feet and end on your neck and face for a perfect result!
6. Make it last!
Every product is different and has different suggestions on how long you should wait before showering. Rinsing off too soon might cause streaking. After you determine when to rinse off according to your desired finish and the product instructions, then there are some things you can do to keep your glow for longer. First, take lukewarm showers and make sure that once you get out of the shower, you dry yourself down by patting yourself with the towel instead of rubbing. You can also avoid tight clothing, but if you need to use something tight (like one of our cute sports bras or leggings), then apply some talc-free baby powder onto your skin before.
With these tips, you'll be a glowing goddess for sure! They'll come in handy when you want to get some summer color from inside your apartment or when you want to wear your favorite Cristalina bikini that will look better with a fresh tan underneath!

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