How to protect nails from spray tan? In short, to protect nails from a spray tan, you can apply a barrier cream, use adhesive tape or Vaseline, wear gloves during the process, clean up any excess solution with nail polish remover after the tan is dry, and moisturize nails and cuticles. Keep in mind that discoloration may still occur and it can be removed with nail polish remover or by waiting for the tan to fade.
In this guide:
Causes of Discoloration and Damage to Nails from Spray Tan
There are several causes of discoloration and damage to nails from a spray tan, including:
- Contact with the spray tan solution: Direct contact with the self-tanning solution can cause discoloration and damage to nails.
- Not protecting nails before spray tanning: Not protecting nails before spray tanning can cause the sunless tanning solution to penetrate the nails and cause discoloration or damage.
- Not removing old polish before spray tanning: Not removing old polish before spray tanning can cause the spray tan mist to be absorbed by the old polish and cause discoloration or damage.
Protecting Nails from Spray Tan
One of the most common problems people face with fake tan is how to protect their nails from the discoloration and staining that can occur. In this guide, we will explore various methods for protecting your nails from fake tan, so you can enjoy your beautiful tan without having to worry about the condition of your nails.
Method 1: Use a Barrier Cream
Barrier creams are specially formulated creams that are applied to the skin before getting a spray tan to create a barrier between the skin and the fake tan spray. This barrier helps to prevent the nails and cuticles from absorbing the spray tan, which can result in discoloration. Barrier creams are often made with ingredients like beeswax or lanolin, which act as a barrier for the skin.
To apply barrier cream to the nails and cuticles, start by washing your hands and nails thoroughly. Next, apply a small amount of barrier cream to the nails and cuticles, making sure to cover the entire area. Use a cuticle stick or small brush to ensure that the cream is evenly distributed. Once the cream is applied, let it sit for a few minutes before getting your spray tan.
There are several pros and cons to using barrier creams to protect nails during a spray tan. Pros include that barrier creams are easy to use, they can be found at most beauty supply stores, and they are relatively inexpensive. They can also be used on other areas of the skin that you want to protect from the tan such as the feet, hands, and around the eyes.
On the other hand, some cons include that barrier creams can be messy and they can leave a greasy residue on the skin. Additionally, some people may be allergic to the ingredients used in barrier creams, which may cause skin irritation.
Method 2: Apply Adhesive Tape or Vaseline
Adhesive tape or Vaseline can be used as a barrier to protect the nails during a spray tan. To use adhesive tape, cut small pieces of tape and place them around the base of each nail, making sure to cover the entire area of the nails and cuticles. Both methods will create a barrier that will prevent the airbrush tanning solution from coming into contact with the nails and cuticles, reducing the risk of discoloration.
It is important to keep in mind that utilizing adhesive tape or Vaseline as a protective barrier for nails during a spray tan may have some downsides. These methods, while easy and readily available, can be messy to work with and may leave a greasy residue on the skin that may require additional cleaning. Therefore, it is important to weigh the pros and cons before deciding on this method of protection.
Additionally, adhesive tape can be difficult to remove and may cause skin irritation. It’s important to note that if you have sensitive skin, you should avoid using tape or Vaseline on the skin, as it may cause irritation.
Method 3: Use Gloves
Using gloves during the spray tan process can help protect the nails and cuticles from discoloration. There are two main types of gloves that can be used: disposable gloves and reusable gloves. Disposable gloves are a single-use option and are typically made of plastic or latex. Reusable gloves are made of more durable material, such as nylon or neoprene, and can be washed and used again.
To use gloves during the spray tan process, start by selecting a pair of gloves that fit comfortably and securely on your hands. Next, put the gloves on and make sure that the nails and cuticles are fully covered. Then, proceed with the spray tan as normal. It’s important to note that you should use a new pair of gloves for each spray tan session to avoid any contamination.
The main advantage of using gloves is that they provide a barrier for the nails and cuticles during the spray tan process and reduce the risk of discoloration. Additionally, gloves can be used on other areas of the skin that you want to protect from the tan such as the feet and hands. On the other hand, some cons include that gloves can be uncomfortable to wear, and it can be difficult to find the right size. Additionally, gloves can be costly if you need to replace them frequently.
Method 4: Moisturizing Nails and Cuticles
Moisturizing nails and cuticles is an important step in maintaining healthy nails and preventing discoloration. This is because moisturized nails and cuticles are less likely to absorb the instant tan spray, which can cause discoloration. Additionally, moisturizing nails and cuticles can help prevent dryness, cracking, and splitting, which can lead to unhealthy nails.
To moisturize nails and cuticles, use a moisturizing lotion or oil that is specifically formulated for use on nails and cuticles. Apply the lotion or oil to the nails and cuticles and massage it in gently. It’s best to do this daily, particularly after showering or bathing, when the nails and cuticles are most receptive to moisture. Additionally, drinking enough water and eating a balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin E, biotin, and zinc, can also help keep your nails and cuticles healthy.
There are many products available on the market for moisturizing nails and cuticles. Some popular options include cuticle oils, such as jojoba oil, vitamin E oil, or tea tree oil, which can be applied to the nails and cuticles directly. There are also many lotions and creams specifically formulated for use on nails and cuticles that can be found at beauty supply stores or online. Some popular brands include Burt’s Bees, OPI, and Lush. It’s important to read the ingredients list and choose a product that is free of harsh chemicals and fragrances, and that is suitable for your skin type.
Method 5: Cleaning up Excess Solution
Cleaning up excess solution after a spray tan is an important step in protecting the nails from discoloration. To clean up excess solution, wait until the spray tan is dry, then use a cotton swab dipped in nail polish remover to gently remove any solution that may have come into contact with the nails and cuticles. It’s important to be gentle when using the cotton swab, as scrubbing too hard can cause irritation.
When using nail polish remover, be sure to use one that is acetone-free and also has moisturizing properties to prevent dryness of the nails. It’s also recommended to apply a moisturizer to the nails and cuticles after cleaning up the excess solution.
To prevent discoloration of the nails during a spray tan, it’s important to take steps to protect the nails before, during, and after the spray tan process. This includes applying a barrier cream, using adhesive tape or Vaseline, wearing gloves during the process, cleaning up any excess solution with nail polish remover after the tan is dry, and moisturizing nails and cuticles. Additionally, it’s important to choose a reputable salon and technician and to follow the aftercare instructions provided by the salon.
Method 6: Use a Nail Whitener
Another option for protecting your nails from fake tan is to use a nail whitener. These products can help to remove any discoloration or staining that may have occurred from fake tan.
It’s important to remember that while these methods can help protect your nails from fake tan, they may also dry out your nails. Therefore, it’s recommended to follow up with a moisturizer or nail oil to keep your nails healthy and hydrated.
Protecting nails from a spray tan is important to maintain the health and appearance of your nails. The causes of discoloration and damage to nails from spray tan include contact with the spray tan solution, not protecting nails before spray tanning, and not removing old polish before spray tanning.
To protect nails from a spray tan, consider applying cuticle oil, using a base coat, wearing gloves, and keeping nails covered with a clear polish or top coat. By following these tips, you can protect your nails from discoloration or damage and achieve a beautiful, natural-looking tan.