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How to use our Self Tan Lotions

by Jade Newton |

 How to use our Self Tan Lotions 

From a young age it was ingrained into us that fake tans and bronzers are the way forward to ensure a healthy glow all year round.

However this advice was rarely accompanied with tips that would avoid your appearance looking less streaky-bacon-like and more "bronzed goddess", ultimately damaging the image of a good bronzer. At the age of thirteen, it was fine to stomp around with knees five shades darker than the rest of your body and hand shaped streaks where you just couldn’t reach the centre of your back properly. Today? Not so much. And it seems that the fear of reverting to this patchy, poorly applied state means self-tanning instils fear into the bravest of tanners. Although this need not be the case any more.

By following these Top Tips for applying Australian Gold's Gradual Sunless Lotion and Instant Sunless Lotion, you shall radiate a golden glow rather than channeling a sun kissed zebra crossing:


1. Exfoliate two days before applying your Sunless Lotion

Self tanning lotions will stick to dead, dry skin cells and be absorbed more thoroughly in these areas causing your skin to look patchy due to an uneven skin tone. Exfoliating rids you of these dead cells. Doing this two days prior to application will rid your pores of dirt. The DHA technology within Sunless products will work on skin that has just been exfoliated, however the freshness of the exfoliation means that the DHA is not able to lock into the skin as well as two days later when the skin is still clear of dead cells, but not as fresh.


2. Cleanse your skin, especially your face

Having clean skin is important for an even looking tan. By cleansing you rid yourself of any residue dirt that was not removed by exfoliation.


3. Remove any make up, moisturisers and deodorant 

These can prevent the Sunless from being absorbed into the skin. Certain deodorants also contain Aluminium Chlorohydrate. This reacts with DHA to create a green tinge to the skin and so should be avoided!


4. Barrier Cream  

Applying a barrier cream to parts of the skin which are notoriously dry will prevent these areas from absorbing the colour:

Palms and sides of the fingers

Below the knee

Soles of the feet

Ankles and heels


These areas will process the DHA deeper than the rest of your skin, leaving you with a noticeable difference between the dry skin areas and the rest of the body.

If you have fair hair, apply a barrier cream to prevent the Sunless Lotion staining your eyebrows or hairline.

We recommend: Australian Gold's Forever After


5. Gloves on

For best results, use a tanning mitt for a smooth, even application of the self-tanning lotion.


6. Time to apply!  

Apply the lotion in a constant, circular motion to avoid missing any areas or creating streaks on your body. It is best to start from the legs and move up the body, applying to one limb or section of the body at a time. This will prevent lines and creasing, which would cause a build up of tan on certain areas of the skin, such as the torso.


7. Phone a friend  

Rather than struggling to apply to those hard to reach places, ask a friend to help you apply the Instant Sunless Lotion to your back. This is a surefire way of preventing an uneven skin tone.


8. Face up to the tan  

Applying self tan to your face can be scary, but as long as you add sparingly as you would a moisturiser, this will ensure that your whole body has the same golden glow. As a rule of thumb, it's best of focus on the areas which would naturally catch the sun such as your cheeks, nose, forehead and chin and then spread out from these areas.


9. Wash your hands 

This step is particularly important if you have not used a mitt, as the skin on the palms of your hand is different to the rest of your body, and the way it absorbs moisture and processes DHA also differs. Not only will your finger nails be stained by the caramel extract, but your hands will darken unnaturally, giving away that your sun kissed skin is not your normal hue. 


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10. Don’t forget your hands and feet

Naturally, you don’t tan on the bottoms of your hands and feet, however it seems to be a common problem that people forget to tan these parts of the body once they  have washed their hands. By brushing over the tops of the hands and feet, you avoid sock/ glove marks. You do not need to apply extra Sunless for this, just rub over the tops of both hands and feet with the used mitt to apply any excess tan to the areas without overloading them.


11. WAIT

One of the biggest faux-pas of self-tanning is people’s determination to get dressed straight away after tanning. This will ruin all of your work. Putting on clothing immediately shifts the lotion that has not been absorbed by the skin fully and will create lines. By waiting, you shall also see the rapid development of colour from the Caramel and Black Walnut Extract as well as the DermaDark and DHA technology start to get to work in your skin, encouraging the production of melanin for a delayed, long-lasting radiance.


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12. (Gradual Lotion) Customize your colour

As the Gradual Sunless Lotion is designed to develop and become deeper over time, depending on the frequency of application, it is recommended to apply this lotion in stead of a moisturiser to deepen your colour to the hue you desire.  Once the ideal colour has been reached, it is advised to reapply the self-tan once every three days for general DHA upkeep.