How Long Does A Spray Tan Last: A Guide To Spray Tan

Do you long for that summer glow all year around?

Are you aware of the harm than the sun can do to your skin?

Exposure to the sun can make your skin age far more quickly than it would otherwise.  

If having a golden tan makes you feel more confident but you don't want to pay the price later in life, then I have good news for you.

A spray tan is a safe way to achieve a summer glow, whether it’s for a special occasion or everyday confidence.

However, first time users may have an abundance of questions – everything from ‘what do I wear?’ to ‘how long does a spray tan last?’

This article explore all your concerns and will answer all your questions.

You’ll be able to enter the tanning salon, or tan yourself at home, equipped with the knowledge and the confidence that you'll get the most out of your spray tan.



Whether your spray tan will take place in a professional salon or in the comfort of your own home, you’ll need to prep for your spray tan.

There are some simple steps you can take to ensure your tan looks great, and stands the test of time.

1. Exfoliating to remove any dead skin and ensure your tan is even and natural looking.

Pay particular attention to problem areas such as your knees and elbows. Do this a day ahead of your tan.

2. Avoid waxing or shaving immediately before your spray tan.

However, don’t make plans to wax or shave too soon after your tan, or you'll remove your new golden glow!

3. Don't use lotion before a spray tan – it prevents the tan from ‘sticking’.

This rule extends to sunscreen, moisturizer make up and any other oils.

4. Speak with a professional to ensure you’re receiving your desired colouring.

It’s always best to voice any concerns before the process starts.

5. Shower before your spray tan to ensure your skin is clean, however, remember to avoid lotions, soaps and shaving.


What Happens When You Get a Spray Tan?


If you’re new to a spray tan, the process can be a little intimidating.

This section will answer your questions to help ensure you arrive at your appointment as prepared as possible.

How long does a spray tan take?

The actual spray tan itself will only take 10-15 minutes. You do need to allow a few extra minutes for your tan to dry before you get dressed.

What to wear for a spray tan?

Your clothes will be removed and you'll wear just your underpants.

Choose your underpants wisely, consider wearing something smaller than your swimmers to avoid an awkward looking line.

Keep to dark colors, or underpants that you don't mind ending up with a stain from the tanning spray.

The clothing you put on after your tan should also be dark (to avoid obvious staining) and loose (to decrease the possibility of the tan rubbing off).

Who will do my spray tan?

This will vary from salon to salon.

Some may offer an automated machine that dispenses the tan whilst others will have somebody actually in the booth with you.

Can I wear jewelry?

Quite simply, no. Any jewelry will prevent the tan from reaching the skin, resulting in an uneven, strange looking tan.


How To Get The Most Out Of Your Tan


The most common question when it comes to spray tans is ‘how long does spray tan last?’

There's no definitive answer to this, but there are several things you can do to increase the longevity of your tan.

1. Avoid showering too soon after your tan. Try to wait around 6-8 hours. Some of the bronzer in your tan will come off but don't worry, your tan will continue to develop for a little longer.

2. Use soft soaps and shower gels to wash with. Don't use any harsh exfoliants, including loofahs and exfoliating gloves.

3. Keep your skin thoroughly moisturized, especially any troublesome dry spots. A specific tan extender will help prolong your glow.

4. Don't exercise or partake in any activities that create excessive perspiring and cause your tan to streak. Also, try and avoid water (including rain) for the first few hours.

5. Limit the amount of times you shave your legs as it'll contribute to removing your tan. Waxing prior to your tan is best, but try and limit shaving as much as you can.

A simple answer to the question ‘how long does a spray tan last?’ is typically 4-6 days, but with care and some forethought, you can help your tan last longer.


In Conclusion


A spray tan is great, safe way to achieve a sun-kissed glow that will give you confidence. It can also be a process that has many unanswered questions.

You now have all the knowledge about spray tans that you need.

You know how long a spray tan lasts, you know what to wear and how to prepare yourself before your tan.

All you have to do is enjoy the confidence that you get from a bronzed body!

About the author

Monica Pullman

Hi, I'm Monica, working mother of two, writer, yoga teacher and happiness coach. I'm passionate about spirituality, sleep, healing and yoga, it's what keeps me balanced and full of energy. I know the power of self-awareness, discipline, and knowledge when it comes to being a mother, as well as being able to bring your best to work every day.

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