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How to Get Rid of Sunless Tanning Orange Hands

by Melissa King, studioD

Even if you prefer to avoid the sun's rays, you can still get a golden-brown glow with bottled self-tanner. When applied properly, an artificial tan looks almost like the real thing. Most self-tanners take a few hours to fully develop, though, so you can't see streaks and stains until it's too late. If you didn't wear gloves when putting on the product, you may now have orange hands -- a dead giveaway of a fake tan. You don't need to wait for the stain to wear off. Instead, remove it in minutes with one of several natural or store-bought remedies.

Wash your hands thoroughly after tanning to wipe away self-tanner before it stains. Use warm water and a mild soap.

Dip a cotton ball in rubbing alcohol or fresh lemon juice. Apply the alcohol or lemon juice to the orange stains on your hands and then rub the marks away.

Put a dab of an exfoliating product or a dash of baking soda on your hands. Use a damp washcloth or loofah to gently scrub the product into your skin. Keep rubbing until the stains disappear.

Wipe your hands with a tan-remover pad. These pads, available at beauty supply shops and drugstores, lift dye stains off your skin.

Rinse your hands with milk. Milk contains lactic acid that breaks down dye.

Use the finer side of an emery board to buff away the orange stains.

Apply your usual moisturizer to your hands after removing the stains.

Items you will need
  •  Soap
  •  Cotton ball
  •  Rubbing alcohol
  •  Lemon juice
  •  Exfoliating product
  •  Baking soda
  •  Washcloth or loofah
  •  Tan-remover pad
  •  Milk
  •  Emery board
  •  Moisturizer


  • Wear latex or rubber gloves when applying self-tanner so the product can't stain your hands.
  • Try using a fast-developing self-tanner. Orange marks and streaks will appear faster, so you can remove them before they stain your skin.

About the Author

Melissa King began writing in 2001. She spent three years writing for her local newspaper, "The Colt," writing editorials, news stories, product reviews and entertainment pieces. She is also the owner and operator of Howbert Freelance Writing. King holds an Associate of Arts in communications from Tarrant County College.

Photo Credits

  • David De Lossy/Photodisc/Getty Images