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Achieving the perfect spray tan is not always easy. You may end up splotchy or streaky, you’ll likely rub off on everything you touch, and you may be darker in some spots than others. While some spray tan problems are inevitable, others can be avoided with the right preparation techniques. Follow these prep tips to attain a flawless spray tan.

Choose Your Appointment Time Wisely

After a spray tan, you need to avoid any type of water for at least four to eight hours. This means no showering or bathing, no swimming, and no activities that will make you excessively sweat. Be sure to schedule your appointment around your daily activities.

Shower and Exfoliate Before Tanning

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Exfoliation before a spray tan is essential to remove dry, dead skin cells. When dead skin cells are properly removed, the bronzing spray will better absorb into the skin evenly and will likely last longer as well. Exfoliate in the shower prior to your appointment, being sure to avoid heavy soaps or moisturizers that could interfere with the skin’s ability to soak up the color.

Shave the Day Before

In addition to exfoliating your skin, you’ll also want to remove any body hair from the areas being tanned. Shave at least six hours prior to your appointment, or preferably the day before. When you tan directly before your spray tan, your pores are open and you increase the risk of developing small dots on your legs.

Dress Properly for the Spray Tan

After a spray tan, you’re likely to rub off color on your clothes. To avoid ruining your outfit, stick to dark colors that won’t succumb to unsightly stains. You’ll also want to remove any jewelry during the spray tan and for up to eight hours afterwards. While tanning, keep your hair up in a ponytail or bun to prevent it from ruining your tan.