How Long After a Spray Tan Can I Shower

How Long After a Spray Tan Can I Shower

People often ask questions about the best spray tan, its kind and the process of its use. Women, as well as men, are now more careful about their skin colour because tanned skin is considered a sign of prestige in society and people love to be seen as pretty and smart.

Before getting the answer to this question, one should first know what is a spray tan and if is applied. Therefore, it is frequently asked ‘how long after a spray tan can i shower’.

Let's start with the definition of spray tan, its various types and then would shed light on the timelines with each step of taking a shower.

What is a Spray Tan?

A spray tan refers to a type of beauty treatment which involves spraying the human body with a chemical spray which produces artificial suntan after reacting with human skin. Different chemicals produce a spray tan, which last positive effects on the outlook of a person.

A detailed discussion on the effects of spray tan and outlook of a person has been made while keeping focus on the hair in the article How Long Is 14 Inch Hair

Chemical Composition

The most prominent ingredients used in the production of spray tan are bronzers and DHA (Dihydroxyacetone). DHA is a sugar derivative that is colorless and reacts on the skin through amino acids by forming melanoidin which makes skin color darker.

Another ingredient is bronzer which instantly darkens the skin colour. Bronzer is crafted from the parts of plants. Bronzers darken the skin color as they are crafted from dark dyes.

Key Types of Spray Tan

There are different types of skin tanners. The overall waiting time before a shower also depends upon the type of tanner. Following are some known types of tanners: -

kinds of spray tan

Spray Tan

DHA is the main ingredient of spray tanners. These tanners foster amino acids that end up in the tan development on your skin.

applying spray tan

A special type of machine is used for an even distribution of a mist which creates a tan on your skin. The nature of tan is temporary only lasts for some days and begins to fade with time.

Norvell Professional Sunless Self Tanning Mist for Instant Sun Kissed Glow, 7 fl.oz.


Norvell Spray Tanning Mist

Norvell stands out as the #1 rated professional tanning brand, delivering a classic, bronze tan with warm brown undertones. At the heart of its success is Norvell’s award-winning Premium Sunless Solution, providing instant, tanning salon-quality color on command. To achieve the best results, users are advised to exfoliate 24 hours prior to application, ensuring a smooth canvas for the tan.

The application process is straightforward for a fast, flawless, streak-free bronze. In a well-ventilated area, users should apply the self-tanning mist to clean, dry skin, holding the can 10-12 inches away and maintaining constant motion. Special attention is recommended for areas prone to over-application, such as elbows, hands, knees, ankles, and feet. It's crucial to avoid contact with water for at least 8 hours post-application, allowing the tan to develop seamlessly.

Norvell's self-tanning mist is not only about aesthetics but also prioritizes skin health. Enriched with skin-nourishing ingredients, the formula is safe, high-quality, and plant-based. This commitment to a safe and nourishing formula ensures that users experience an endless summer tan, capturing the warmth of the sun without compromising skin well-being.

For facial application, a light coating on a makeup sponge seamlessly blends the tan onto the face and into the hairline, ensuring a natural and radiant finish. Whether aiming for a sun-kissed glow or a deeper tan, Norvell offers a reliable solution for a beautiful, sunlit complexion. Check Price

Tan Lotion

Tanning lotion is easily available in the market of any town. The extent of dark tan is determined by the extent to which DHA is witnessed in a tan product. The type of skin you possess also plays a role in determining the darkness of tan’s color, which best suits you.

Gradual Tan

The development of gradual tan is witnessed with the passage of time. An individual could begin with a layer but if the tan color is not dark enough then another layer of tan could also be applied. This type of tan could take many days for tan buildup or to get mixed with the previous one.

Tan Oil

Tan oil is different from other tan products as it increases the UV rays' impacts to foster melanin production. Exposure to the sun is also a crucial factor in the best orientation of the tan involved. Tan oils increase the risk of receiving hazardous effects from UV rays.

Things to Do Before Tanning

While using body tanning products, you are supposed to keep in mind a few relevant facts. Consider, that your skin is layered with different tanning agents.

what to do before tanning body

 The Pre-Tanning tips to witness effective tanning results are mentioned below: -

  1. Removing Hair
  2. Prepping the Skin
  3. Avoid Moisturizing Your Skin

Post Spray Tan Shower

There are various aspects which need to be understood and considered before having a shower after a spray tan. The duration of a wait for taking a shower after tanning and some other aspects need to be carefully considered for better results.

shower after a spray tan

Before taking a shower, please wear open or flip-flop-toed shoes for the protection of your feet. The prominent aspects which need special attention are given hereinafter:-

Duration of a Shower

People often inquire about the suitable waiting time after a spray tan before having a shower. There is no exact answer rather this time depends on the extent of tan that your body has absorbed.

how much to spend on showering

However, the best recommended waiting time for a shower after the tan is 8 to 12 hours so as to have a full effect of the tan.

It is also possible that in case of a reduced waiting time like 4 hours, depending on the weather, sweat may affect the effectiveness of tanning on your body by fading away some tan color on the body.

Avoiding moisture or oil application post-tan for 8 to 12 hours would enable the tan to absorb well in the body. Furthermore, the application of fragrances, skin care lotions and substances is not advised for 8 to 12 hours. You also need to avoid wearing tight clothes.

No to Warm Water

At least after 8 hours, you are all set to shower. However, you must avoid lukewarm or cold water during the shower. At this stage, the entry of DHA has already taken place in the skin which reacts to create a dark tan color on your skin.

warm water for shower

The issue with warm water use is that it will wash away the entire DHA from the pores of your skin by reducing the effect of tan on your body.

Opening of skin pores could only be dealt with cold water which closes the pores of your skin to ensure the best results and the presence of DHA in your skin pores. The use of warm water is, therefore, not recommended.

Take a Short Shower

Do you want your spray tan to give the effects of the best tanning? If yes then your focus should be towards having a short time shower instead of a long shower because the longer the shower, the more possibility there would be that your skin pores could open resulting in uneven fake tan effects.

Must remember that your shower must not be more than 10 minutes duration because adding more time would demonstrate a patchy tan on the body.

Apply Hand Wash only

For best results, only hand-washing is recommended which means that all types of scrubbers, loofahs, and mitts should be avoided.


All such things will strip away the tan from the entire skin but using hands to wash would only affect bronzer on the skin. This should only be done gently without rubbing the skin else it will wash away the DHA as well from your skin.

Avoid Shampoo & Soap

During the shower, never use any shampoo or soap because substances like parabens that are an ingredient of soap and shampoo have a negative impact on the tan.

These chemicals are harsh and could wash away DHA from the body. Using gentle soap is the best solution for you after your body shows a full tan.

Removal of Bronzer: No Worries

When you observe the drain of a golden brown liquid during your shower, you need not to be panic about the actual body tan. The liquid being drained is the bronzer of your skin and that bronzer then washes away.

It provides immediate tan to your skin to show you the actual supposed outlook of tan but the actual tan is witnessed by DHA. Remember! You do not need the bronzer to be on your skin for more than 24 hours as it will convert your tan to a slightly orange color.

Post Shower - Dry your Skin

When you have completed the shower, the next and most ignored part that can destroy the tan is drying your skin. Do not forget to pat dry the skin by using a dark towel instead of a light-colored towel as the bronzer on the skin shows stains on light-colored towel.

Again you must also avoid moisturizers and lotions or rubbing the skin very hard for 48 hours after spray tanning the body. For future showers, individuals must use tan extender lotion to prolong the tan period.

Treatment Advice after Spray Tan

There are some pieces of advice to be considered after getting tan treatment. Some of the important aspects to be taken care of are as follows: -

beautician giving instruction on post tanning 1
  • It is advised to avoid scheduling pedicures, manicures and waxing applications after tanning your body. 
  • Wearing the bra should be avoided, as it gets closer to the skin of the body and could effect on the skin.
  • Always avoid tight dresses after the spray tan as this would result in more sweating and will fade skin.
  • Your skin exfoliates during shaving which results in fading the tan color.
  • Ensure using a razor without a moisture strip.
  • Warm water in the ocean, swimming pool, tub, or long bath duration of hot water results adversely to skin.
  • Also refrain from applying oil-based sunscreen or aerosol.
  • You should also avoid using facial masks.

Shave After A Self-Tan?

Hair removals are a part of life but individuals still feel a need to also continue shaving even after a spray tan treatment. The reality cannot be denied that the practice of shaving will make you witness some removal of your body’s tan. It is also known as exfoliation.

You will need to exfoliate at one time but should always focus on a lighter mode of exfoliation instead of showing aggressiveness in shaving or rubbing.

Health and Safety

The most asked question “Is spray tanning also suitable for health or there are hazardous impacts on human health? This question is crucial as you ought to spend money on spray tanning only when it suits your health too. Despite having severe health implications, the use of spray tan is not feasible. The good news is that the key ingredient DHA that is used in Spray tans is completely approved by FDA.

Can we conclude that spray tanning is completely safe because FDA has also approved it? No, it cannot be said with certainty on the strength of approval of the FDA. In reality, the commercial tan booths do not approve spray tan practice because there is no available data in the FDA.


A spray tan is the best alternative to direct sunlight with the fear of the health hazards of UV rays. This practice is also approved by FDA but commercial booths involved in providing spray tanning services do show concerns over this practice.

How long after a spray tan can i shower is a question of general import. However, it has been recommended to wait for 8 to 12 hours for a shower after applying the spray tan while in some conditions waiting time over 4 hours is also accepted.

Overall, spray tanning is good as long as it is not excessively exercised in life to enjoy new looks and a sense of prestige.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the longest you can wait to shower after a spray tan?

Time varies as per the type of tan you apply on the body. However, it is advisable to wait at least 4 hours for any type of tanning. In some cases, you can take a shower after 8 hours or 12 hours.

Will my spray tan look better after I shower?

It effects the body with the passage of time. First shower after tanning a body would leave the body glowing however it will continue to increase even after the shower if it is taken in line with the instructions.

How do you shower for the first time after a spray tan?

In case of first spray tan experience, avoid at least 12 to 24 hours getting wet or taking shower to let the spray tan fully absorbed. However, after due time, use your hands to gently wash off any excess over skin, in order to develop tan evenly. Use warm water, and rinse well for about 5 minutes at the end.

How long can you get wet after spray tan?

It is recommended to stay away from wetting after 8 hours have spent from the application of spray tan. If you take shower prior to that, you will not see spray tan giving effect for the longer duration.

Louisa Jane

Passionate beauty blogger exploring skincare, haircare rituals, and beauty secrets, guiding readers toward radiant skin and confidence.

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