While it may be convenient to group some of your beauty routines into one single day, there are some serious implications that can occur when it comes to tanning and waxing. Waxing (or pretty much any other hair removal) strips your skin of dead skin cells and other dirt & debris – which, while a great thing for the health of your skin overall, leaves it temporarily vulnerable and sensitive. Tanning – whether in a booth or with a spray/solution – can be very detrimental to your freshly-waxed skin if not timed correctly.
Sun Exposure and Waxing
No matter whether you’re tanning or simply outside for a longer period of time, you should always avoid extended direct sunlight after tanning. This is especially relevant for those who are looking to get a pre-vacation wax; if you’re planning on relaxing on a beach somewhere, you should aim to get your wax a few days before your departure to avoid any negative side effects. More than ever, sunscreen will be extremely important to apply to the skin (even in places that you haven’t waxed!) in order to provide additional protection to your vulnerable skin.
As a side note: even if you aren’t planning on being in the sun or tanning, applying sunscreen with a strong SPF is always a good skincare move. Keeping your skin protected from harmful UV rays is one of the keys to preserving youthful-looking skin in the long run.
Fake Tan & Waxing
Waxing is actually a fantastic thing to do prior to fake tanning; the act of waxing exfoliates your skin, leaving it perfectly primed for a flawless tanning application. Tanning solution sticks much better to exfoliated skin and will actually extend the life of your tan if you get a wax beforehand. If you are going to a spray tan treatment, be sure to tell the person in charge of your application how long it has been since you waxed to ensure that it falls within a safe timeline of around 2-3 days beforehand.
However, it is not recommended to get a spray tan or apply fake tanner on the same day as a wax. This is because your pores are open and exposed post-wax, and tanning solution can very easily settle into those pores, creating unsightly dark spots on your body. Similarly, if you tan too closely to a wax, your skin won’t have enough time to recover from the irritation that will leave your tan looking extremely uneven and patchy.
On the flip side, waxing too soon after a tan can cause you to lose your application far too quickly! This is the same concept as to why it’s a good idea to wax beforehand – if you don’t, your tan is applied to skin that consists of dead skin cells that will be stripped off during the waxing process. Don’t throw away your money by removing your tan with a wax!
Ultimately, the key is to wax 2-3 days before you are scheduled to receive a spray tan or are planning on applying a tanning solution. Not only is this the safest method of doing both treatments together, but it will extend the life of your tan and keep your skin happy and healthy!
How Long Should You Wait to Tan After Waxing?
A period of 24-48 hours is the ideal time to wait after waxing before getting a tan. This will allow you to see how your skin reacts post-wax, and ensure any irritation or redness is gone beforehand. Exposing your skin to sun or UV rays too quickly after a wax can cause an increased chance of sunburn or even skin irritation or abrasions. Not only will this be painful, but it won’t look cute, either!
On the other hand, you should wait 2-3 days after waxing before heading to your favorite spray tan spot or applying your own self-tanner at home. This will ensure the pores on your skin have closed so you can expect a flawless application and skip clogged pores that could cause irritation and breakouts!
If you are still unsure as to whether you are able to get waxed, always default to calling your local esthetician or dermatologist to get their recommendations – they will provide you with the knowledge you need to make the best choice for your looks as well as for your skin!
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