How to Keep a Tan from Fading? 8 Tips for Long-lasting Tan!

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After putting so much effort into getting a dreamy bronze skin tone, you surely want it to last long! But how to keep a tan from fading? You need good preparation, perfect process, and meticulous aftercare! Our article will give you a thorough view of all these questions!

How to Keep a Tan from Fading? 8 Tips for Long-lasting Tan!

How to Get a Perfect Tan?

Or rather: How to get a tan that’s worth keeping? Whether you choose to tan outdoor or indoor, there are useful tips you should keep in mind!


Everything will be better if prepared in advance, and tanning is not an exception. A day before the session, you should finish your waxing and exfoliation schedules. They will remove dead skin cells and put the dermis in an ideal condition for tanning. Without this ‘surface’ treatment, the dull cells might ruin the natural glow you want.

Although scrubbing doesn’t leave any impact on your melanin (the main reason for a bronze skin tone), be sure to use exfoliating agents with a gentle effect so it won’t cause any irritation to your skin. You should use this tip for all skin treatments too.

Find a good tanning lotion

If you have a good lotion, you can develop your desired skin tone in a short time, regardless of the tanning methods you choose. Here is the information you need to know about tanning lotion.

Intensifier, Maximizer, and Accelerator

As the names indicate, the beautiful bronze skin color will come to you faster if you use one of these products. When you spend less time under the sun or in a tanning bed, you won’t have to worry about the risk of UV rays.

This group of products includes seed oils, cocoa butter, and other healthy ingredients. They all have an amazing moisturizing effect, very suitable for people who are getting a tan for the first time.


Some intensifiers might consist of bronzers. Once you have established a base, you would see the results of a good bronzer. It deepens the color without making it dull.

A small note: you need the best products when it comes to bronzers because anything low-quality will only give you a weird orange shade or unpleasant streaks. Don’t risk your skin only to save some money.

Tingle Lotion

With ingredients for strong oxygenation and increased blood flow, tingle lotions are probably the fastest products if you need to darken your skin tremendously in a short time. However, they are not for people who have never had a tanning session before.

Tanning lotions are not too different from sunscreens. You will need to reapply it for maximum effects, especially when you are tanning under the sun.

Know when to start tanning

Summer is undoubtedly the best season for us to get that naturally glowing, sexy tanned skin, but overdoing it will put you under serious health risks. You should limit the total tanning time to 2 hours and divide the session into various intervals of 10 – 15 minutes. Avoid the peak of sunlight from 11 AM to 2 PM too!

If you rely on salons and tanning beds, the expert will advise you to keep each session for less than 15 minutes, especially if you are tanning for the first time.

How to Keep a Tan from Fading? 8 Tips for Long-lasting Tan!

Position yourself well

Unless you are in a vertical tanning bed, you will need to roll over and change your position every quarter of the hour. This way, the UV rays will reach every part of your body and leave no pale patches behind.

If you are tanning outdoor, we recommend taking a walk around or doing exercises after applying your tanning lotion! Activities will make your muscles work and improve blood circulation, enhancing the effect of the lotions.

Stay hydrated and moisturized

Every tanning guide will repeat this word to you: moisturize. There is no easier tip for long-lasting tanned skin because you only need to find a body butter or a moisturizer formulated for tanning and provide your body with enough water.

If you are too busy to remember getting your hourly amount of water, try a reminder app for regular notifications!

How to Keep a Tan from Fading? 8 Tips for Long-lasting Tan!

How Long Does a Tan Last?

The lifespan of your tan depends on the method you choose as well as your skin type and the speed of your skin regeneration, but you can have a general view in this matter:

  • A spray tan will look best in only a few hours after you finish getting it if you don’t take care of it properly. However, it will last for 10 days with proper nourishment!
  • A natural tan from sunbathing has a life cycle of 7 – 10 days. Afterward, the outer layer of your dermis will start to exfoliate itself.

There is no permanent tan! If you see someone sporting tanned skin throughout the year, it is mostly because they have a dose of sunshine every day or use a tan enhancement.

Why is My Tan Fading?

Before you get to the solutions of your dilemma, it’s better if you know where you have slipped and what you should avoid doing again:

1. You haven’t moisturized your skin enough

The most common mistake people make after getting a tan is abandoning their skin. When the skin is dry, the surface cells will flake and peel off, bringing the bronzed layer of the dermis along. With enough moisture, the regeneration of the skin will slow down and thus keep your tan lasting.

2. You have soaked yourself excessively

Quick showers are much better than long baths if you have gone through a tanning session, for soaking your body in water makes the tan fade much sooner. Also, pools and steam rooms should be out of your list as long as you want to stick to the bronze skin tone.

3. You use strong cleansers and exfoliators

When you have a powerful cleanser or exfoliator, they surely can speed up the session and achieve the goal with minimum time, but they also dehydrate and peel your skin cells faster.

Furthermore, you should limit the number of exfoliating sessions as well, since it will only bring you closer to the point where you have to bid the tan goodbye.

4. You are negligent

Sad but true, some people are under the delusion that they are immune to damage from the sun because they have tanned skin. They think they no longer need sunscreen when going out, and it is not true. The sun can render your skin extremely dry and flaky, subsequently ruining the tan.

How to Keep a Tan from Fading? 8 Tips for Long-lasting Tan!

How to Keep a Tan from Fading Prematurely?

Shower in the right way

Give your tanning lotion 3 – 4 hours after tanning to reach its full potential before washing yourself clean. If you don’t wait it out, you might end up with a lighter tan than expected.

Once the wait is over, take a quick shower using cold or lukewarm water to preserve the newly established skin tone, and you will be good to go!

Moisturize your skin

After finishing a tanning session and washing up nicely, the most important step for us is making sure our skin is not dry. Both the sun and the tanning beds will strip natural oils and moisture off your skin, leaving them chapped and vulnerable.

Whenever your skin feels dry, it is totally great to reapply your regular moisturizer. There are also many similar products made exclusively for post-tanning skincare.

Besides common moisturizers, it would be wise to have moisturizing effects in your other skincare products, sunscreen or after-sun cream, for example, so you will have enough protection as well as protection after you get away from the sun.

Don’t forget to hydrate from inside AKA drink a lot of water throughout the day!

How to Keep a Tan from Fading? 8 Tips for Long-lasting Tan!

Try enhancement

  • Self-tanner: Your tan will fade eventually, and people tend to notice the changes on your face first, and a self-tanner would effectively fix the issue right away. Additionally, we think gradual tanners will give you a natural appearance with their slow effect.
  • Bronzer: Serving as a highlighter for tanned skin, bronzers can be applied on spots usually exposed to sunlight such as cheekbones, nose, temples, forehead. They darken faded spots while keeping a natural look for you.
  • Spray-on tan: Unfortunately, when your tan starts fading, it will cause patchy areas instead of fading off evenly, and a spray-on tan with the solution in a mist form will help you patch them up.
  • Pills: You can find some pills designed for maintaining tanned skin. These pills function by replenishing the natural oils you have lost during the process. However, for medication, you should ask for a doctor’s opinion in advance.

Sunbath some more

Nothing lasts forever! As mentioned above, your tan only lasts 7 – 10 days with proper care if you don’t keep the tanning sessions going on.

While it is not appropriate and healthy to visit a salon every day, you can prolong the lifespan of your tan by giving yourself some sunlight in the early morning! You will have enough sun rays for tanning as well as vitamin D in less than half an hour!

Avoid harsh treatments

Waxing is the first treatment that should be excluded from your list after you get some tan. This process can remove the top layer of your dermis along with the hair, actively stripping off the tan.

Furthermore, shaving, as well as waxing, will leave your skin dry, making it harder to retain moisture even with moisturizing products.

Adjusting your lifestyle

  • Diet: Your meals should contain more ingredients with beta-carotenes, such as potatoes, apricots, mangoes, potatoes, and pretty much everything that has an orange or red pigment. Secondly, tyrosine is also a compound you should consume more, and you can find it in avocadoes, egg whites, salmons, turkeys.
  • Wear white: The white color creates a contrast with your tanned skin hence you should wear white clothes more often if your bronze skin is losing its color. If not white, a light shade would suffice too. Nonetheless, keep in mind that this method is but an illusion for the eyes.
  • Drink water: If you don’t usually drink enough water during the day, it is time for you to change the bad habit. Have a cup of water next to you while working for frequent sips, stop at the water pot whenever you can, and carry a bottle when you go out.

Use an extender

The manufacturers specifically invented tan extenders to lengthen the lifespan of our tan with moisture, nutrients, and vitamins that you have lost during the tanning process. After all, the healthier your skin, the longer you can keep the tan.

What makes this product popular is how much of a no-brainer it is. You can apply it after your tanning session, no matter what your skin type is and which stage it currently is at.

Protect your skin

All of the efforts above would go to waste without constant protection. Sure, you need to get your daily dose of sunshine, but excessive exposure to UV rays can turn your skin from attractively bronzed to burnt. Before you go outside, always remember to apply sunscreen with high SPF and reapply every 2 hours.

Protective clothes like wide-brimmed hats and long-sleeved shirts will also do a great job at blocking UV lights from damaging your skin.

How to Keep a Tan from Fading? 8 Tips for Long-lasting Tan!


How to choose the best sunscreen?

The sunscreen market is gigantic, yet there are a few tips you can use when shopping for sunscreen!

Go for products tagged with “broad-spectrum protection”, as they can protect you from both UVA (contributing to premature aging and skin cancer) and UVB (causing sunburn and also skin cancer).

Choose products with SPF 30. They block about 97% of UV rays, not much lesser than higher SPF sunscreens.

Water-resistance is not the same as waterproof. If a product says it is water-resistant, it only means it will stay on your skin longer. Reapplying every 2 hours is the recommended usage for every sunscreen.

How to know if I have applied enough sunscreen?

There are two types of sunscreens: chemical and mineral. For chemical products, your skin will absorb them, so you can rub them in as you please. But for mineral products, you can practically see the layer of the substance.

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Without decent skincare, the tan you have tried to achieve might start fading off before you can do anything about it. Nonetheless, if you know how to keep a tan from fading, you can confidently flaunt your sexy bronze skin even when summer is over. Happy tanning!

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