How to Remove Spray Tan from Your Hands and Feet

Hands and Feet
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If you are among those of us who yearn for a sun-kissed complexion, a sunless tan is all you need. To get the perfect bronzed skin any time of year, safely, head to the fake-tans. Choose a salon-style spray tan machine or a self-tanner like Mystic Tan. You’ll look sunkissed and classic in no time.

Spray tan might seem like your savior, but it’s not all roses! We commonly run into two scenarios:

  • You apply the sunless tanner but get too much on your hands and feet. They now look absurdly dark compared to the rest of your body.
  • As your sunless tan fades, the crackling and fading around your hands and feet (as well as knees and elbows) makes your skin look horrible.

Fear not! There are easy ways to get tan off your hands and other body parts. In this article, I’ll explain how to remove spray tan from your hands and feet. With a few home remedies and a few products targeted directly at removing spray tans and sunless tans, you’ll be right in no time.

I’ll also give a couple of quick pointers so that you can avoid these issues next time you go for a spray tan.


How to Remove Spray Tan from Your Hands and Feet

Remove Spray Tan Solution from Hands and Feet

Remove Fake Tan Quickly By Washing

If you’ve just applied fake tan or spray tan, and you can see your hands or feet are stained, you may be able to quickly washing your hands with soap and water.

Use a pumice soap or exfoliating towel to scrub off anything you see on your hands or feet.

It may work if you’ve just applied the spray tan formula, but if it’s been sitting for a few minutes, it’s probably too late to wash tan off your hands.

Assuming you’re beyond washing with soap, let’s go over some tan removal tips and tricks to help you deal with the absolute nightmare on your hands (figuratively and literally speaking).

 1. Lemon Juice To The Rescue!


Lemon juice is not just used for making lemonade! Fresh lemon juice possesses natural bleaching abilities and is great to use to get rid of a botched spray tan job on your feet and hands.

Here is what you have to do:

  1. Take a lemon rind about, which is ½ inch thick.
  2. Rub it gently over your hands and feet, or just the affected area.

You can use lemon or lime in many ways to remove the tan. Here is another method:

  1. Take a cup of sugar.
  2. Mix it with lemon juice.
  3. Rub the mixture on your tanned hands and feet gently.
  4. Wash it all off gently with warm water after a few minutes.

If that is not enough, here is another great home remedy that can get the job done:

  1. Take 4 tablespoons of lemon juice.
  2. Add 4 tablespoons of cucumber juice and rose water.
  3. Stir the mixture well and apply it all over your tanned hands and feet.
  4. Let it sit for 15 minutes and then gently wash it away with warm water.

These are some of the ways you can use lemon to cut down the blotchy shades of your spray tan. All these methods are effective as long as you repeat them a few times.

Keep in mind that one cycle may not provide you with the results you are hoping for, so don’t lose hope and be persistent.

2. Baby Oil

Baby oil can be a great way to get rid of spray tan and self-tanning chemicals from the skin. You can use baby oil all over your body to remove a bad tan, or you can just target problem areas like the hands, feet, elbows, etc.

Let the baby oil soak in for 30 min or so. It will break down the tan chemicals and soften your skin. After that, gently exfoliate in the shower to get the spray tan off your body.

For more information, see here: Does Baby Oil Remove Fake Tan?

3. Exfoliate With Teeth Whitening Toothpaste

Crest Whitening Toothpaste

Yes, you read that right. Teeth whitening agents are another effective way to get fake tan off your hands and feet.

This is a great solution, but it’s generally recommended for small tan stains.

If you have spray tan stains in between your fingers or your toes, you can use this remedy to wash away the stains.

  1. Take an old toothbrush and wash it well.
  2. Apply a pea-sized amount of whitening toothpaste on the brush.
  3. Use it to rub gently between your toes and fingers or other small patches.
  4. Once you’ve rubbed thoroughly, let it sit for 10 minutes and then wash it off.

4. Baking Soda as a Tan Remover Scrub

Arm & Hammer Baking Soda

Baking Soda has countless uses.

You can use baking soda to remove spray tan stains, make your fridge smell great, and bake cookies all at the same time!

The best part about this home remedy is that it can be used to treat larger areas, unlike the whitening toothpaste method.

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to harness the power of baking soda.

  1. Take a tablespoon of baking soda.
  2. Mix it with 2 tablespoons of warm water to make a paste.
  3. Apply the paste on the affected area and rub it gently to exfoliate.
  4. Let the paste sit for 2 minutes and then wash it off with warm water.

Here’s another exfoliating scrub that makes use of baking soda to get rid of the spray tan marks on your hands and feet.

  1. Take one cup of baking soda.
  2. Add ½ cup of sweet almond oil.
  3. Add 8-10 drops of lavender essential oil.
  4. Mix all the ingredients together and use an exfoliator to rub it off.
  5. Rub in circular motions for a few minutes and wash it off with warm water.

5. Hop into the Bathtub

Bath tub

Time is of the essence here, so you need to start taking the right measures as soon as you realize the damage. To fix it, you need to jump in the bath.

But hold on a sec!

A regular bath may be great in cleaning off any dirt and grime, but when you have tough stains that are a result of a spray tan, then it takes a little extra time to get the job done.

Here is what you have to do:

  1. Fill the tub with hot water.
  2. Meanwhile, moisturize with body oil.
  3. Add an adequate amount of bath oil to the tub and soak.

This simple home remedy will not only help you remove spray tan from your hands and feet but also from your whole body. The combination of oil and hot water helps remove dodgy marks and breaks down the fake tan.

If you don’t have a bath, a shower will do too. The steps for doing the deed in the shower are a bit different.

  1. Rub body oil on the affected areas.
  2. Run hot water over them and let the oil seep in.
  3. Use a shower gel with sulfates to help strip the color away.
  4. Wash away the lather and use a body scrub to exfoliate your skin.

Some people believe that taking a bath can work like magic and they’ll be tan-free in mere minutes.

Sorry to burst your bubble, but it will take a while. Just give it some time and don’t give up. Just make sure you scrub like there’s no tomorrow to get rid of the tanning nightmare on your hands and feet.

6. Go Swimming

Swimming Pool Hands

Want to know of a fun way to get rid of the spray tan without any hassle? Just head over to the nearest pool and cannonball! This is by far the most fun way of removing spray tan from your hands and feet.

As you swim and splash in the pool with your friends, your spray tan will gradually break down.

The chlorine in the water will naturally pull away some of the dead skin cells on your body that have been darkened by the spray tan. You’ll shorten the length of your overall tan, but you’ll also even it out on your body.

Swimming and prolonged water submersion are a great way to soften that fake tan. Once you get out of the pool, rub your hands and feet with a towel to help with the process.

Of course, you’ll be doing this over your whole body if you expose it to chlorinated water.

Product Suggestions for Fake Tan Removal

The above-mentioned home remedies are effective in getting you the results you want, but you can also ensure successful results with the help of the right products.

Using these products alongside DIY remedies can increase the chances of removing your spray tan, sunless tanner, or tanning water completely.

Exfoliating Bath Towel

Exfoliating Bath Towel by Mayberry Health and Home

These exfoliating bath towels are the perfect product you need to physically exfoliate your skin and remove spray tan easily.

You can easily use the exfoliating bath towels with any of the above remedies for better results.

Baiden Exfoliating Tan Mitten

Baiden Exfoliating Tan Mitten

Baiden products are designed to be soft, so you can have peace of mind that this Tan Mitten will be gentle on your skin. The exfoliating mitt provides dual benefits. It exfoliates your skin to get you ready for a perfect spray tanning session, and it will remove the spray tan blotches and messes from areas where it shouldn’t be.

Bondi Sands Self Tan Eraser

Bondi Sands Self Tan Eraser

Bondi Sands has an outstanding reputation and brand among self-tanning enthusiasts (including me!). They make great sunless tanning products, and they make great sunless tan removal products.

This eraser is a foaming cleanser that will help remove sunless tan from your body.

However, it is recommended that this be used at least 3 days after applying the sunless tan. If yours goes sideways immediately, this eraser probably won’t be the solution for you.

Bondi Sands Self Tan Eraser, 6.76 Fl Oz
  • Our soothing aloe vera formula...
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ModelCo Tan Remover Soap

ModelCo Tan Removing Soap

This soap bar includes pumice and goat’s milk, which help remove stubborn self-tanner, especially between the fingers and toes. However, like the Bondi Sands, it works best after a few days. It does a great job evening out the tan after a few days and removing awkward striping.

It also works great as a skin-prep before applying another layer of a sunless tanner.

MODELCO Exfoliating Self Tan Remover Soap - Lighten or Total Tan Removal | Pre Tan Exfoliator Polishes and Exfoliates Skin | 4.41oz
  • WORKS INSTANTLY: Powerful, new self...
  • EXFOLIATES SKIN: A sunless primer,...
  • REMOVE IT ALL: The Self Tan Eraser...
  • YOUR SECRET WEAPON: The Tanning Soap...

Preventing Hand and Foot Fake Tan Stains

Here are a few items that you can use to prevent issues from occurring in the first place.

Norvell DHA Barrier Cream

Norvell DHA Barrier Cream

Norvell knows spray tanning. They are probably the top spray tan company in the world. Their Barrier Cream can be a real help when applying spray tans and self-tanners containing DHA. The barrier cream will lessen the absorption of DHA, or block it completely, depending on how much you use.

You need to be careful to blend it so that it feels natural transitioning from your hands to your arms, and from your feet to your legs. But once you get the method down, this barrier cream can make a huge difference in those awkward areas like the fingernails, hands, feet, knees, and elbows.

Norvell Pro Blending DHA Barrier Cream For Spray Tanning, 32 Fl. Oz.
  • PROFESSIONAL TIP: Apply liberally to...

Vaseline as Barrier Cream

Vaseline will work as a barrier cream as well. And you probably have it squirreled away in the back of one of your cabinets already! Vaseline can help soften hard patches of skin, and will help blend the self-tanner or spray tan uptake in these areas.

Self Tan Applicator Mitt

Mystic Tan Applicator Mitt

This one is easy. By applying your self-tanning mousse or gel with an applicator mitt, you’ll get a much smoother, less streaky finish. And you’ll protect your hands from getting too much tanning solution on them.

There’s no downside to using an applicator mitt. If you don’t have one, see our article on how to apply self-tanner without a mitt.

Mystic Tan Self Tanning Washable Applicator Blending Mitt for Streak free Tan
  • APPLY & BLEND WITH EASE: Effortlessly...
  • ELIMINATES THE MESS: No more stained...
  • A PERFECT FINISH: Achieve an airbrushed,...
  • SOFT AND SMOOTH – Soft microfiber...
  • MACHINE WASHABLE: Can be thrown in...

Spray Tan Stick-On Feet

Spray Tan Stick on Feet

These are more useful when you’re getting a spray tan as opposed to using a sunless-tanner, but they’re useful regardless. These stick-on feet ensure that your feet don’t get exposed to too much spray tan liquid that falls to the floor and tends to pool.

By using these before you spray tan, you can control the exposure the bottoms of your feet receive.

60Pairs(120Feets) Premium Disposable Spray Tanning Fee Stick On Sole Protector for Sunless Tanning
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Magic Eraser for Spray Tan Removal. Does it work?

Magic Eraser for Spray Tan Removal

What about using a magic eraser to remove spray tan? Is that a good idea? Some say it will remove your fake tan, but there are reports of problems using a magic eraser to erase your tan.

The big complaint that has been reported from magic erasers is… chemical burns from scrubbing your body with a cleaning sponge designed to remove grime from the walls.

Doesn’t that sound fun? No, it doesn’t.

Don’t rub Magic Erasers on your skin!

Should Windex be used to remove spray tan?

That’s a big NO, so never even consider this as a viable option. The ingredients used in the product are likely to cause skin irritation and are considered extremely harmful. Windex can solve the blotched tanning issues, but it does so by stripping away the outer layer of the skin.

So it’s fair to say that using Windex to remove spray tan isn’t a safe remedy at all.

How to Lighten a Spray Tan

Spray tanning can sometimes go wrong, and in some cases, people can end up with bright orange. Lemon juice is the perfect remedy to tone down the orange hues of a spray tan.

Just use any of the above methods to achieve the desired results.

Final Thoughts: Remove Spray Tan from Hands and Feet

Now that you have gained some insight into how to remove spray tan from your hands and feet, as well as some information on how to prevent this issue from occurring in the first place, I hope you never find yourself in such a dilemma again.

If you end up with a blotchy tan with a missed spot, or if your spray tan darkened too much overnight, you now have all the tools to easily remove your tanning disaster.

See this article if you’re looking to just lighten your spray tan, and see this one if you want to remove your spray tan altogether.

A little prevention goes a long way, so consider proper preparation before you apply that self-tanner next time!

how to remove spray tan from feet and hands

Written by Kayla Young

Kayla is the founder of LuxeLuminous. She has worked professionally in the tanning industry for years. She has been interested in esthetics since childhood, and has tried every hair, skin, and makeup product ever produced (more or less).