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How to Fix the White Spots After a Spray Tan

by Jaimie Zinski, studioD

When it comes to spray tanning, prepping your skin before the appointment is just as crucial to success as the product used and the attendants skills with the sprayer. Skin that isn't properly washed or exfoliated prior to a tanning appointment can lead to unwanted spots -- spots that become more noticeable as the skin darkens over the following 24 to 48 hours. Instead of scrubbing your skin relentlessly and heading back to the salon for a reapplication, fix the white spots at home to even out your skin's color.

Take a shower and clean your skin. Dry your skin. Don't use moisturizing cream after the shower as the cream will get in the way of the correction process.

Work an exfoliating cleanser into the white spot. Pay attention when applying the cleanser to only work it into the white spot and not the surrounding tan skin, as the exfoliating process will slough off your spray tan. Exfoliating helps to remove the dead skin cells, dirt and oils that originally caused the white spots.

Wipe away the exfoliant with a damp washcloth. Dry your skin with a separate washcloth.

Slip on a pair of rubber gloves. Cover the white spot with a store-bought self-tanner. Self-tanners are available in creams, sprays and wipes. Creams and wipes provide more control and will allow you to cover the area with more precision. Use broad, even strokes to apply the product. If the spot is very small, use a Q-tip to apply the self-tanner.

Allow the self-tanner to dry for at least 10 to 15 minutes. During this time, don't allow the corrected white spots to come into contact with anything. Steer clear of water for at least three hours after applying the self-tanner and wait until the following day before taking a shower.

Items you will need
  •  Exfoliating cleanser
  •  Washcloth
  •  Rubber gloves
  •  Q-tips


  • Check your elbow, knees and heels for white spots. These areas are prone to dry skin and don't always absorb the tanning spray.


  • As always, be careful when using any chemical to follow the manufacturer's instructions.

About the Author

Residing in Chippewa Falls, Wis., Jaimie Zinski has been writing since 2009. Specializing in pop culture, film and television, her work appears on Star Reviews and various other websites. Zinski is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in history at the University of Wisconsin.

Photo Credits

  • David De Lossy/Photodisc/Getty Images