If you want that summer vacation glow but won’t be traveling this summer, then don’t worry. You can easily get gorgeous, bronzed skin at home using tan drops. If the thought of self-tanning sounds imitating to you, we break down the whole process in this easy step-by-step guide. But first, we look at what tan drops are and the different types you can find for your bronzing skincare routine.
What are tan drops?
Tan drops are a highly concentrated formula of self-tanning water. They can usually be used on their own or you can mix them in with your moisturizer or face serum for easy application.
Tan drops will contain an ingredient that will bronze the skin. Some contain DHA and others contain Erythrulose, which is a botanical alternative. Both will react with the proteins in the skin to build a natural-looking tan. Erythrulose can develop slower than DHA, but it will usually give a longer-lasting tan.
Some tan drops might also contain other ingredients, such as hyaluronic acid, that help to moisturize the skin. This can help to leave a more even tan, as it will leave the skin’s surface smooth and even.
How to use tan drops
Step 1: Exfoliate and cleanse
The first step to the best facial tanning at home is to exfoliate. This will help to give you a smooth surface for an even tan. It can be best to use a cream exfoliator around 24 hours before you use tan drops, as this will give your skin a chance to settle after the exfoliation.
Before you tan, should you make sure your skin has been cleansed with a gentle jelly cleanser to remove any excess oil and dirt and ensure you have a clean surface to tan. Make sure your skin is completely dry before you apply your tan drops.
Step 2: Add drops to your moisturizer or serum
There are some tan drops that you can use on their own, but often it can be easier to get a full coverage by adding some drops to your usual face moisturizer or serum. Just place the usual amount of moisturizer or serum in the palm of your hand, add the drops and gently mix them together.
You can use between 1 to 4 drops of tanning drops – the more drops you use, the deeper your tan will be. If it’s your first time using tan drops, it can be best to start with fewer and then build them up if needed. This will usually give you the most natural-looking tan.
Step 3: Apply tan drops
Once you’ve mixed your tan drops with your moisturizer or serum, you can then apply the product to your face. Gently smooth it over your face, neck, and décolletage.
Step 4: Blend
To ensure your tan is smooth and streak-free, you should take some time to blend out the product. You should concentrate on areas such as the hairline, jawline, around the nose, the ears, and the décolletage to make sure it’s completely blended and buffed out.
You should also always wash your hands thoroughly after applying tan drops, to stop the palms of your hands from developing an unwanted tan.
Step 5: Leave to absorb
Once you’ve blended your tan drops, you should leave your skin to absorb the product for around 5-10 minutes. You should wait until your face is completely dry before applying makeup, to make sure you don’t dislodge any product and end up with a streaky-looking tan.
How often can I use tan drops on my face?
Tan drops will usually take a few hours to develop, so you can quickly get a feel for how bronze you will look. You can use tan drops as often as you like, depending on how deep you want your tan. You could use them every day if you want to quickly build up a deeper tan, or you might want to just use them once a week for a subtle, sun-kissed glow.
If you use exfoliators often, you may need to use tan drops more regularly to maintain your tan. You could find that exfoliating buffs away the bronzed look, so it will need topping up more.