Can You Tan or Get a Spray Tan After Waxing?

waxing legs

If you want to have smooth and hairless skin this summer, as well as a tan, you probably want to know, can you get a spray tan after a wax?

The good news is that you absolutely can spray tan after waxing, and if the right steps are taken, waxing and tanning are a great combination. The most important things are to exfoliate your skin prior to your wax, to keep your skin hydrated with moisturizer, and to wait a couple of days before going for a spray tan.

Waxing and sun tanning also go together if you exfoliate, moisturize, and give it some time either side of your wax.

This article will break down the potential problems of mixing sun tanning or spray tanning with waxing, and how to avoid them, so you can enjoy smooth, glowing skin all summer.

Waxing and Spray Tanning

Spray tanning is a great option for those of us concerned about the dangers of over-exposure to UV rays. Waxing and going for a spray tan will give you a smooth and golden glow, which is the perfect look for summer. But can you tan after waxing?

It is not recommended to wax after a spray tan. The wax could react with the color on your body, and some may be removed with the wax. Waxing also often takes off a top layer of skin. This will lead to unevenness and streaky color, which is not altogether desirable.

So, wax first, then tan after – ideally though you should wait for some time, we will cover this more in the next section below.

When you go for a wax, you should always exfoliate and moisturize your skin prior to applying tanning lotion or visiting a salon for a spray tan. Exfoliating removes dead skin cells, and moisturizing locks in moisture to keep skin smooth.

This step is especially important if you plan to get a spray tan soon after, because the artificial color in sunless tanning products sticks to and lasts longest on smooth skin.

So, you’ve taken the right steps and have gone for your wax and have beautifully smooth but still pale legs. It’s time to sort that out with some color.

How Long After Waxing Can You Spray Tan?

You should wait an absolute minimum of 24 hours before applying sunless tanning products to your skin after a wax. If you can, wait between 48 and 72 hours. Your skin needs time to recover, so waxing and tanning on the same day is always not recommended.

Waxing is hard on your skin. The quick ripping motion to remove hair from the root is highly effective, but often causes irritation and always causes your pores to open.

If you head for a spray tan after waxing too soon, the product will likely clog in your open pores, which can lead to a build up of dirt in the pores and an uneven finish. I’m sure everybody has seen or experienced first-hand the brown spotty legs that are a result of tanning too soon after hair removal. Avoid this by giving it some time.

You shouldn’t need to exfoliate your skin again between waxing and your spray tan, and in fact it can be detrimental if skin is irritated from the wax. Do make sure, however, to keep skin clean and well hydrated with a calming and moisturizing lotion. Smooth skin takes on tan much better and can even make the color last longer.  

Waxing and Sun Tanning

If you are going for your tan the traditional way, lying under the sun, you do not need to worry about color from a spray tan clogging into your pores. There are still some things to consider, however, if you want to combine waxing and sun tanning.

It is best to stay out of the sun for 24 hours prior to a wax. If you have been in the sun immediately before a wax, your skin will be in a more sensitive state because of the UV exposure. This makes it more likely that waxing will lead to skin irritation.

24 hours will give your skin time to recover from the sun exposure before waxing. That is, if your skin is not burnt. Waxing sunburnt skin is never recommended, and in fact a good beauty technician would turn you away.

The same pre-wax steps that I mentioned earlier apply here – make sure to exfoliate and moisturize your skin before your wax so that the dead skin is removed, and the skin is smooth.

Once you have had your wax, wait at least 24 hours before going in the sun again. Waxing can take off a top layer of skin along with the hair, and so you will be much more likely to burn if you expose this fresh layer of skin to the sun.

It is important to note that because of the necessary exfoliation that goes along with waxing, you might notice a fade in your natural tan if you have one already. Removing the tanned skin cells will reveal a freshly made layer of skin underneath, which won’t have been as exposed to the sun and therefore won’t be the same color.

The best time to get a wax if you have a vacation planned is two days before. Your skin will stay smooth and hair-free for the duration of your vacation, and your skin will have enough time to recover from the wax before you expose it to the sun.

Related Questions

Can I Get My Eyebrows Waxed After Tanning?

If you are tanning under the sun, wait at least 24 hours after sun-exposure before going for a wax, and be prepared for it to disrupt the color slightly. Waxing before tanning is always a safer bet.

If you are using sunless tanner, you should wax your eyebrows first, and then wait for 48 hours before going for your spray tan. If the wax removes some of the spray tan and leaves you streaky, it won’t be easy to hide on your face!

Can You Get a Bikini Wax After a Spray Tan?

Going for a wax after a spray tan is not recommended. The wax will likely remove some, if not all, of the color from the spray tan and leave an uneven finish.

It’s better to go for the bikini wax, wait a couple of days, and then go for the spray tan.

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