POPSUGAR Beauty

Everything You Need to Know Before You Get a Wedding Spray Tan

Aug 23 2014 - 9:00am

You've planned every detail of your wedding [1]: found your something blue [2], mastered your makeup look [3], and even nailed down all of your bridesmaids' hairstyles [4]. Type A [5]? It's OK — it's your day. And the last thing you want is for something like a spray-tan mishap — such as a bronze formula smeared on your dream white dress — distracting you from the magic of your big day.

We know wearing white can be daunting, so you're probably going to want to get some sort of faux glow (especially if you've been good about sunscreen this Summer [6]). So we created this special spray-tan guide just for brides. Once you've brushed up on the ABCs of tanning [7] and how to exfoliate [8], read on to score tips from Jessica Bringas, the self-tanning pro at Oasis Day Spa [9] in New York City.

POPSUGAR: When is the perfect time to get your spray tan?

Jessica Bringas: I would definitely suggest doing it two days before your wedding [10] so you will have already washed off the first layer of the tan, it will have settled into your skin, and you can add your own moisturizer. You also have the ability to see how it turned out and make sure that it's perfect. And if, god forbid, it isn't [right], you have some time to get it fixed or touched up.

PS: Is there any chance it will get on your white dress?

JB: No, because it already has sunk into your skin. Once you shower and rinse off that [extra formula] — which is just bronzer, not the actual tan itself — you'll be left with just the color on your skin.

PS: White is an extreme color to wear with a tan. How should you pick what bronze shade to do?

JB: Go by what your base color already is. So if it's in the middle of the Summer and you've been at the beach this whole time, obviously you are going to be darker than you would be during the wintertime. So then you can go a shade darker. I don't suggest doing anything more than a few shades darker than your natural skin tone, because that tends to look more artificial. You also want to choose a shade according to your features — your hair and eye color. So if you have dark hair and eyes, then you can get away with a darker tan. If you are blond with blue eyes and freckles, you want a hue that's a bit lighter.

PS: What's the best way to convey the color you want to be to the person doing your spray tan?

JB: I always try to get a good idea by mentioning a celebrity whom a lot of people know. For example, I often suggest Jennifer Lopez [11]'s bronze, because she looks amazing, but at the same time, she's not superdark or artificial-looking. She has that caramel sun-kissed color.

PS: What should you look for in a tanning salon?

JB: Choose a place that doesn't use the same shade for everyone — that's a bad sign, a really bad sign. And find out what kind of spray-tan formula they use. At Oasis Day Spa, we use SunFX, which is organic and hardly has a smell. Plus, it has a nice green undertone, which cancels out any chance of looking orange.

Photo by Christian Oth Studio [12] via Style Me Pretty [13]

PS: For your big day, what other products should you use to make your tan look its best?

JB: I would definitely suggest just putting on a really nice lotion, or even a dry oil. St. Tropez has a luxe new dry oil with a bit of shimmer in it. This will enhance your tan more, because it defines your limbs and muscles. It acts like a highlighter and will look good for camera lighting in pictures.

PS: Your face is the first place to lose a tan. What are some good tips for keeping your tan intact the two days between when you get sprayed and your actual wedding [14]?

JB: I would say skip using any kind of salicylic acid wash or acne wash or benzoyl peroxide, because those lighten up the skin. Also don't exfoliate those two days. If you do have problematic skin and you want to keep it clear and need to use acne washes, then you can always get an at-home self-tanner for your face. Dab a bit on, and just blend it evenly.

PS: When should you get your manicure and pedicure?

JB: You should definitely get them before you do your spray tan, since the manicurist will be exfoliating your feet and legs, which could lighten the color. Just make sure that whoever is doing a spray tan gives you barrier cream to protect your manicure and your pedicure.

PS: What's the best way to extend your tan during your honeymoon?

JB: You can actually get something really cheap from the drugstore, a gradual moisturizer. I've used it before, and there are a number of them on the market from brands like Jergens [15] and Nivea [16]. Since you already have your spray-tan base, you can use it as a moisturizer to keep your color. Just pick one for your skin tone, such a fair or medium.

PS: Any last words for nervous brides?

JB: Just be confident, and make sure you are very vocal about what you want when you get the spray tan done. It's always safer to go a little bit lighter than darker, because once you go to dark, you really can't lighten it up too much before the big day.

Photo by Christian Oth Studio [17] via Style Me Pretty [18]


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