How Long Does A Spray Tan Last? Let’s Make It Long-Lasting!

A rich bronze skin tone is a symbol of beauty and health. But maintaining a swarthy complexion throughout the year would be a real challenge for tanning fans. Fortunately, there are artificial ways, the advantages of which are both time-saving and health-preserving.

A spray tan is beautiful and fast. Moreover, this method is recognized as much safer than long-term sun exposure. Just one trip to the salon will provide golden skin as if in summer.

But how long is the effect of spray tanning? To answer this question, let's take a closer look at this process's subtleties.

Tanning And The Process Of Its Appearance

Tanning is a natural protective reaction of the skin. The conditional barrier is manifested by the formation of melanin, a pigment, in the layers of the epidermis. This substance protects the skin from sunlight by absorbing ultraviolet radiation, which affects the DNA of cells and causes mutations. So, the more melanin, the more intense the tan.

Determining your skin tone will help you understand how to manage your sunburn and choose cosmetic products to protect it.

However, tanning always damages the dermis cells, which leads to health problems, including skin cancer. Therefore, it is important to choose the best way to get a bronze skin tone to avoid undesirable results.

Ways To Get A Tan: Their Ups And Downs

In general, you can get a bronze skin tone in natural and artificial ways. Let's look at all the pitfalls of each of them.

  • Sunbathing

The sun's rays give the skin a natural golden color. In addition, their benefit lies in the formation of vitamin D, which is necessary for the growth and development of bones. However, it is significant to know that short walks in the fresh air are enough for the beneficial effects of the sun.

Namely, prolonged exposure to the sun can adversely affect health. Not only burns or sunstroke, but also weakening of immunity and premature aging of the skin, are dangerous.

To avoid sunburn, you should monitor the UV index and tan outside only when this number is within the normal range.

Until now, there is a debate about the pseudo-usefulness of sunbathing, so more and more people are inclined to an unnatural way to get tan.

  • Fake tan

Modern cosmetology allows you to get a beautiful bronze skin tone at any time. Well-known options are self-tanning using sprays, lotions, creams, gels, mousses, and solarium. The first use cosmetic products with different composition and method of use, and the work of the latter is balanced ultraviolet radiation.

A common negative consequence of visiting a solarium is a tanning bed rash caused by an allergic reaction.

A quality tanning product has virtually no contraindications. It has a number of advantages, including quick results, affordable price, no burns, and the ability to remove. People who care about their health prefer spray tanning.

Spray Tanning Is An Ideal Alternative To The Sun

A spray tan is the most popular alternative to sunburn. This method avoids skin damage, temporarily improves its tone, and adds glow. 

Spray tanning is an ideal alternative to the sun

The Principle Of Operating

The mechanism of spray tanning is to spray the mist evenly over the body in a special booth. The spray solution contains safe ingredients: bronzers and DHA. Bronzers are natural dyes that provide solution visibility during application and give an instant tan look. DHA is an active compound that forms a chemical reaction with natural amino acids and produces melanoids that give the skin its brown tint. 

Rules For Skin Preparation

A flawless tan requires clean and smooth skin before the procedure. A few tips to achieve this:

  • Peeling

Exfoliating the dead layers of the skin will eliminate dryness and unevenness, and as a result, the tan will be less spotty and longer lasting. Do this a few days before the procedure to allow the skin to fully recover.

  • Depilation

The hair on the body prevents the solution from evenly reaching the skin and absorbing. However, take care of this a day or two before the procedure so that the pores are narrowed after the depilation.

  • Lack of additional care products

Moisturizers, deodorants, and cosmetics not washed off before the procedure create a barrier for the ingredients of the tanning solution.

Spray Tan And Airbrush Tan: Main Differences

The confusion of spray tanning with an airbrush has a good reason because they use the same process ― a sprinkling of the solution. The main difference is only in the method of application.

During the first procedure, the client enters a special booth. The solution is sprayed all over the body through special holes. Arms and legs should not lean against the body or each other so that the mist settles evenly.

During the second procedure, a trained specialist sprays the solution. This is its advantage because the master has the opportunity to erase excess products or repeat the action in the right places. Airbrush does not provide streaks, lines, and stains.

How Long Does A Spray Tan Last

Unlike natural methods, spray tanning is a short pleasure. On average, it stays on the body for about 10 days. The duration of wear may depend on your natural tone and tan intensity. So, in fair-skinned people, the effect will last less, for 5–7 days. If the tan faded faster, it means that the client did not follow the proper care after the procedure.

Spray tanning is an ideal alternative to the sun

Tan Fading 

Fake tan is washed off gradually and evenly. But in places where there is constant friction of the body or clothing, fading may be more active. The armpits, elbows, and knees are at risk. However, even such irregularity usually looks natural.

How To Wash Off A Bad Result

If you are not satisfied with the result or the tan fades unevenly, you can try to wash it off using everyday products. 

  • Lemon juice

The juice of this fruit is a natural bleach. We can rub it into our skin or add some to the bath and lie in it. But be careful, lemon dries the skin.

  • Baking soda

A great option is to add the baking soda to your shower gel to get a mild consistency, massage the body, and rinse off with warm water. This mixture acts as a scrub and exfoliates the dead skin layer along with the tan.

  • Vinegar

The acidity of this product dissolves dark spots on the skin. Apply the liquid to the desired area, leave for a few minutes and rinse off.

  • Toothpaste

The remedy has brighten properties that work not only on teeth. A little paste on the skin will whiten spray tan stains.

These products are effective and affordable. It is important to use them once and pointwise to avoid undesirable consequences such as burns.

Recommendations For A Long-lasting Effect

Despite the short-term effect of self-tanning, skin care allows you to maximize the benefits of the procedure. The specialist will tell you how to behave on the first day, when to wash off the solution, and what to wear. However, there are general recommendations to make the result last longer.

  • Take a warm shower with mild detergents. Avoid steams, acids, peels, scrubs, and aggressive sulfate gels.
  • Wipe your body with light movements or dry each time
  • Moisturize your body twice a day: in the morning and before bed. Use light lotions and creams without oils.
  • Drink plenty of water to refresh your skin.
  • Wear loose clothing and avoid friction.
Recommendations for a long-lasting effect


So, spray tanning is a really quick and harmless way to get an attractive golden skin tone at any time of the year. It has several advantages, including instant results, safety, and affordability.

The effect of spray tanning is short-lived, and perhaps the shortest of all methods. However, since it is harmless to human health and skin condition, the procedure can be repeated as soon as necessary. And proper tan care will ensure its gradual and even fading.


πŸ’° Is a spray tan worth the money?

The price of a spray tan varies depending on the composition of the solution, and the professionalism of the technician, and sometimes it can be quite expensive. However, even a high-quality procedure by an experienced specialist will cost less than treatment for the dangerous effects of sunbathing.

βŒ›οΈ How can I make my spray tan last longer?

The duration of a tan depends on proper preparation. Do not shave or exfoliate a day or twobefore the procedure, moisturize the skin after, and the bronze tint will last longer.

πŸ› Does spray tan just wash off?

The tan does wash off, but not immediately. It is a gradual and even process over 7–10 days. Avoid steaming and scrubbing to prolong it.

πŸ™…πŸΌ How many days before an event should you get a spray tan?

The peak tan occurs on the third day after the procedure. You should not plan important meetings right away, as the compounds in the solution are still active, and the skin is still darkening.

Jose Diego Mier

Dermatology Expert

Dr. Jose Diego Mier is a board-certified dermatologist with over a decade of experience in light therapy, dermatology, and skin care. As the founder of the Heliotherapy Research Institute, Dr. Mier has dedicated his career to the study and application of light-based therapies for various skin conditions, including acne, psoriasis, eczema, and skin aging. He is renowned for his extensive research contributions, numerous publications in leading dermatology journals, and his work has been recognized with awards for excellence in research and innovation. He has been invited to speak at national and international conferences, sharing his expertise and insights on light therapy and skin care.

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