It\’s crucial to have a flawless Competition Tan for Bikini and Figure stages…really, it\’s one of the most important elements of a competition! However, with so many rules, regulation and different products to choose from, choosing the best color for you and the spray tanner to apply that color has become a challenge. Spray tanning has entered into the bodybuilding world, however, not all competition spray tans are created equally.
When planning to compete and looking for a tan, I usually suggest using the tanning company that will be on site. This ensures that your color will match similarly to others that will be at your show. However, if you have a choice or if you would prefer to do your tan on your own, I highly recommend Liquid Sunrayz. They have the best tanning products I have ever used!
Most competitors\’ will agree that the tanning process is one of the most stressful and dreaded parts of their contest prep, yet it\’s the one aspect of their prep which they can control. It is the job of a reputable tanning company to alleviate that stress, and to make the experience as pleasant and comfortable as possible.
Choose wisely, ask for pictures and don\’t be afraid to ask questions!
Tanning for First Time Competitors
In most cases, two coats of competition Bronzer applied the day or night before the competition is sufficient. However, for those who are extremely fair, it may be advisable to apply a base coat two days before competing. This coat can be showered off before applying the final two coats the day before competition.
If a tanning company will be on site for the show you are competing in, I suggest scheduling an appointment with them for Friday afternoon/night at the hotel. They will then apply at least two coats of competition color. If more color depth is needed, then they will apply an additional coat early the morning of competition. The color will develop over night and darken.
For the very best results, spend the week prior to competition moisturizing your body using a moisturizer. The day before you receive your competition tan, exfoliate with an oil free body scrub. Pay special attention to the knees, elbows, hands feet and heels. The better condition your skin is in, the better our product will absorb, the more flawless your tan will look, and you will have a more even fade after the competition.
The day of your spray tan, do NOT use moisturizer or deodorant. Wear old, LOOSE fitting clothing. It is also recommended that you do not put your posing suit on, or any other tight restrictive clothing, after having your color applied for at least 4-5 hours. Please try to have your posing practicing finished before being sprayed!
Here are a few common questions competitors need to know about competition tanning:
I have sensitive skin. Could I have an allergic reaction?
Although companies cannot guarantee you won’t have an allergic reaction, there have been none documented within the spray tanning industry. We will be happy to do a test patch for you.
How do I care for my tan post show?
After your first shower, it is important to apply moisturizer frequently. This will delay the exfoliation of the skin cells that retain your tan. You can also purchase products that contain small amounts of DHA which will extend your tan a few days. Avoid the use of all bar soaps, and products that are mineral oil or petroleum based. These will fade your tan quickly.
When can I shower?
We recommend that you wait 6-10 hours before showering. Please be advised that when you shower for the first time, you will see brown residue washing off. Don’t panic! This is not your tan washing off, but the temporary bronzer or color guide as it is commonly called. This is in the solution so they can be sure we are applying your tan as even as possible. Your tan will have developed by this time. For competitions, you probably will not rinse off the indicator unless you are told to do so by the tanning company.
Will it stain my clothes?
The solution will launder out of most fabrics, although we do not guarantee that. This is why we ask that you wear old clothing. Cotton is best.
What do I wear for my appointment?
LOOSE FITTING clothing. This is very important! You can choose to be sprayed in an old bathing suit or whatever is comfortable for you. Weather permitting, it is best to wear flip flops on your feet.
How do I prepare for my tan?
The night before or day of your appointment, shower and fully exfoliate using an oil free body scrub or shower gel . Concentrate on elbows, knees, heels, feet and hands. Nylon exfoliating gloves for the best results. Do not use bar soaps. Shower gels are best. Do not apply any body lotion, deodorant or make up, as these will act as a barrier and inhibit the development of your tan.
How long will the tan last?
5 – 10 days, depending on the type of each individuals skin, and depending on how well post tan instructions are followed. Certain factors can affect the longevity of your tan. The use of hot tubs, swimming in pools or the ocean, and excessive sweating while wearing restrictive clothing will cause faster fading.
How dark will I get?
The depth of color will depend on the percentage of DHA used. This will be decided at the time of your appointment, after it is determined what skin type you have. For competition you will be very, very dark. Even African American competitors usually apply a single coat of tan.
What is DHA?
DHA (Dihydroxyacetone) is a colorless natural chemical (it is derived from glycerin, a three carbon sugar) that interacts with the amino acids in the dead skin cells (Stratum Corneum Layer) to produce a brown color change. DHA is not absorbed into the body and it has no known toxicity. It was first discovered by the Germans in the late 1920’s when DHA spilled on the skin produced a brown color. DHA has been listed with the FDA since 1973, and has been used in cosmetic preparations for over 30 years.
What is spray on tanning?
Spray on tanning is a process of applying self tanning products. It will produce a more even natural looking tan. With the use of DHA based solutions, the color can be customized to ones skin type.