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Image / Beauty

Without a trace: What will really get your skin completely tan free


by Aisling Keenan
28th Aug 2019
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Achieving a completely tan free body is something that I hardly ever do, but not for want of trying. I think I’ve finally cracked it, though… 


Tan removal is a pain in the crusty elbow, isn’t it? You’ve to either put up with scaly skin shedding like a snake for days, or else pile layer after layer of tan on in order to keep at your desired level of bronze.

There are lots of products out there claiming to remove everything in one go, but in my experience, it takes that and more. So here’s what I do when I really need to be tan free overnight.

Always body brush

tan free

Aromatherapy Associates Polishing Body Brush

€27.70 from Space NK

A good body brushing is really underestimated and something that’s also easily forgotten. Look, I know as well as you that there are tonnes of things to remember in the bathroom every time you shower, and lots of things vying for your attention and time.

But if you are hell-bent on removing all traces of a tan, a pre-shower body brush will really, really help. Not to mention the skin-smoothing and circulatory effects it has.

Use tan remover

tan free

Cocoa Brown Fresh Start Self Tan Eraser

€9.95 from cloud10beauty.com

Every single tanning brand out there has a remover, and trust me when I say I’ve tried them all. They’re all very, very similar in what they do – you put it on, in mousse form, all over your tanned bits.

You wait up to about 20 minutes, and then the idea is that when you get into the shower the product has loosened the tan off your skin making it easier to wash off.

I liked a few of them, but the Cocoa Brown one I found marginally more effective, and I use Cocoa Brown tan a lot so it makes sense to me to use their remover.

Soak and scrub

Just like there’s a lot to be said for body brushing pre-shower, there’s equally well a lot to be said for using your towel to give a little post-shower skin buff.

Don’t be afraid to have a long bath if you’re struggling to get tan off, and afterwards, buff your skin gently with a towel to remove even the most stubborn, grubby bits from your elbows, knees, wrists and ankles.


Read more: The best tans for the girls that don’t wear tan

Read more: The IMAGE Beauty Awards: the winning tans

Read more: Future icon: The tan that works in just NINE minutes

Photo from Unsplash