From skin preparation through to applying and preserving your tan. Here are 10 rules to even self-tan application that everyone needs to know.


It´s no secret that I enjoy a good glow.  Applying self-tanner allows me to achieve a sun-kissed look any time of the year, without the harmful UV rays damaging my skin. There are a few potential stumbling blocks though, so today on the Style Beyond Age blog, I´m sharing my top tips to achieve an even and natural-looking self-tan.

10 Rules to Even Self-Tan Application


1 – Leave Self-Tanning until Last


Self-Tanning should be the last step in your self-care routine. If you’re planning on getting a manicure, shaving, or waxing, make sure it´s all taken care of before you start your application. These treatments will remove your self-tan and we don´t want you going to all this effort for nothing.

2 – Exfoliate your Body before Applying Self Tan


Self-tan and dry skin do not mix, so exfoliating your body is a crucial step in the application process. I like to use my exfoliating body mitt in the shower, paying particular attention to the heels, ankles, knees and elbows. A back exfoliator is also handy, for those hard-to-reach places.

3  – Exfoliate your Face before applying self-tan


Like your body, your face also requires TLC before self-tan application. I use a facial exfoliating mitt, which is much kinder to your delicate facial skin than the alternative mitt for your body. Methode Brigitte Kettner also has a gentle, yet effective exfoliating tool, that I have been using for years on my face.

4 – Dry Fully Before Applying the Product


After washing and exfoliating, allow yourself time to dry completely before moving onto the next stage. I recommend waiting fifteen minutes once you´re out of the shower. It sounds like a small step, but it can make a big difference, don´t be tempted to rush ahead. A great towel helps with patience. This is my favorite, an oversized lightweight Italian waffle weave towel. 

Style Beyond Age Self Tan Application Tips 7
Style Beyond Age Self Tan Application Tips 8

5 – Moisturize your Skin


Once you´re fully dry, but before the self-tan is applied, we need to add some moisture back into the skin. I like to use Cetaphil Moisturizer cream around my knees, ankles and elbows to avoid these areas taking on a darker shade. For my face, I choose Perricone MD and pay special attention to my nostrils, eyebrows and hairline.


Style Beyond Age Self Tan Application Tips 1

6  – From the Bottom to the Top


When applying self-tanner, we work from the bottom to the top. Starting with the feet and legs, moving onto the body, and finally applying to your face.

When applying the self-tan, avoid using your hands. Our hands move the product around the skin too much and often leave us looking sad and streaky, instead use a mitt like this one from Best Bronze for the most even results.

Style Beyond Age Self Tan Application Tips 3

7  – Applying to your Face


Less is more when it comes to applying self-tan to your face. I sparingly dab the self-tanner on the areas of my face that would naturally catch the sun. Focus on your forehead, cheek bones and around your nose, then gently spread the product out towards your hairline and the edges of your face, to achieve a natural look.

8  – Extend the recommended drying time


For the best self-tan results, extend the recommended drying time of the product. If product guidelines recommend ten minutes, allow for twenty and you won´t be in for any nasty surprise streaks.

9  – Tidy Up Problem Areas


If you have messed up, there are ways to rectify things. Some say rubbing a lemon on the area will remove streaks. For those streaks that a lemon can´t budge, soak the area in warm water and oil to remove the tanner, before applying again.

Style Beyond Age Self Tan Application Tips 2

10 – Preserve your Tan

Now that you’ve gone to all this effort, we want your tan to last. Keeping your skin moisturized, washing gently in the shower and minimal exfoliation will help to preserve your tan and keep it looking good for longer.

I hope you enjoyed these 10 rules to even self-tan application.

Will you be giving them a try?

Shop the Self Tan Products I Use




Style Beyond Age Back exfoliate

Cetaphil Moisturizer

Regular price $10.99

Style Beyond Age Cetaphil Moisturizer

Perricone MD

On Sale $149

Style Beyond Age Perricone MD
Style Beyond AgeTantasia Self Tanner Bronzer

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