After 7 years of spray tanning, and training other spray tan artists, there is something a lot of us don't realize will affect our beautiful spray tans.
I can hear you now... "But Trish, the snow isn't even all the way melted yet... WHY are you talking about sunburns right now??
Actually, a few reasons. 1) the sun is going to be on our skin before we know it and I want you to hear my voice the first day you decide to head out side with a tank top on and "forget" your SPF. 2) Sunburns SUCK, no matter what reason, they just do. 3) Spray tans and sunburns DO NOT mix.
Layering a spray tan on top of a fresh sun burn or one that isn't healed all the way is asking for disaster.
I've included a couple of photos of what doing this will look like. LUCKILY, these are NOT my guests, but I want to be clear about what you're getting into, should we try to put a spray tan on top of a sunburn.
What happens when we apply the sunless solution on your skin when it has been compromised is it will dry the skin out even more, and create the look of severe peeling. Even if you think you are "over" your sunburn, your skin is still very delicate for a minimum of the next 3 weeks. Even if you haven't peeled, I can almost gaurantee if you get your spray tan, after you've gotten a sunburn, you will all of a sudden start peeling in 24-48 hours.
I'll be honest, I've turned away quite a few spray tan guests that had a sunburn. It's NEVER what I want to do, but morally, I HAVE to. WHY would I knowingly do something that will likely cause you to have awful looking results?? My goal is to make you look and feel beautiful. Not to have you feeling like your skin is falling off.
How do we avoid not being able to get a spray tan??
Wait a MINIMUM of 3 weeks to get a spray tan after a sun burn. Even if you haven't peeled, a spray tan could cause you to peel and then end up with a blotchy, uneven tan. 3 weeks is kind of the "magic number" as to how long we need to wait to be sure your skin is completely healed. And yes. Even if you can't "see" the sunburn, your skin is still trying to heal itself.
BE HONEST. If you are coming to see me, and you know you've been sun burned, TELL ME AHEAD of time. Don't just show up to your appointment and think I won't know. I've been looking at skin for SEVEN YEARS. I know when you forgot your sunscreen!
So... how do we avoid sunburns? Here are a few tips:
I know... long sleeves and pants aren't you're favorite to wear when it's warm out, but trust me... if it saves your skin AND your ability to get that gorgeous glow you love, you'll do it! Big, fun hats with wide brims also help protect your face!
Slather on the SPF:
Make it a habit to use SPF all year round. Also, be sure you are using the correct tool for the job. Going out on the boat all day? Before you go, apply your SPF and take along the 8000 SPF and reapply every few hours. (I know there is no such thing as 8000 SPF, but I think you get my point.)
Stay out of the sun!
ESPECIALLY on the first few days of warm sunshine! It's so easy to forget that you have been inside, covered up by layers of bulky clothing .... the first few minutes of sunshine are liable to burn that pale skin!
If you get a sunburn, there are a few ways to treat it. But don't try to hide the fact you had one from your spray tan artist. I've been trained to spot a sun burn a mile away.
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