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4 Feb 2013

Fake Bake Spray Tan Review

If you have ever wondered if you should try a spray tan, here's my advice.  Don't
The result 48 hours and a lot of scrubbing later is good but this is one fad I can gladly let by pass me.

I was feeling a bit white, with it being the middle of Winter and all, so on my husband and my Anniversary trip to Cambridge I thought I would try a spray tan for the first time.  I have seen some terrible and some great spray tans so I thought I would give it a whirl. See Picture 1 for the before shot.

I am notoriously difficult to please when having beauty treatments.  I do all my own manicures, pedicures, tanning, highlighting (mostly) shellacing and eyebrow shaping (with the occasional threading thown in).  The only help I will gladly receive is a full head highlight as I can't see round the back of my own head, and a massage.  I have had a few massages lately so I thought it was time to try something new.

I asked a friend first who gets a spray tan several times a month and she said Fake Bake can settle in your pores, I thought, how bad can it be? and plunged straight in. I made sure to shave and scrub my skin the night before and apply moisturiser that I allowed to sink in.

When I arrived at the Spa you have to remove all your clothes and put on a paper g-string. I had purposely brought a black Brazillian pair of pants so the tan line would be at least attractive, but I stupidly went with the paper underwear.  You then get moisturiser applied to your nail beds, elbows and knees  You have to wear your hair up, no make up or perfume and no deodorant.  The woman did not discuss what colour I was trying to achieve so I thought now may be the best time to bring it up, and asked for something medium in tone, Then the silly bit starts. You stand in a tent on some towels with stick on pads on your feet, whilst a woman sprays you with cold brown stuff and you pull various ridiculous poses to allow for even (hmmm!) coverage.

After this has finished you get to see the results, now bear in mind I hate bad manners and find it hard to be honest to people when things go wrong, What I thought was "What the F*** have you done to me" what I said was "Can I remove a bit of this?" I was handed a cotton pad and I proceeded to dab away at the sticky brown stuff.  Then they dry you with a hose and you are left to dress into loose clothes (I put on one of their robes, which I am glad I did as the mess was awful) I was told to wear no deodorant, make up or perfume for another 6 hours and then I could shower but to leave it on longer for the best result.

I then went into the spa changing room to change into my bikini as this was where I was meeting my husband and proceeded to get very busy with a box of tissues. After 10 mins of careful wiping and patting ( and a lot of of confused looks) I got the colour down to the shade in picture No2. To be honest this picture really doesn't do the orangeness justice as it was in daylight and so I was washed out (no really!) We then went back to the room while my Husband laughed at me and I washed my hands (after 1 hours not 6 hours) the idea of not washing my hands for that amount of time and also the colour of my palms and nail beds made it essential.

We then went into Cambridge. I managed another 2 hours before I had to buy some cleansing wipes and remove what was left of the face colour after my first wipeathon. See picture 3 (please excuse my expression I wasn't best impressed).  The colour of the residue is very red in tone and makes you look a bit burnt I was also attracting strange looks from several of the shop assistants (I couldn't really blame them either)

That evening I had a full shower and a whole heap of the colour washed off which left a not too unpleasant base colour, though with orange palms, nails and dark feet. Picture 4 is me today, so 48 hours on and 3 showers/baths since the application.
example of the orangey shade
I like the healthy colour but the rigmarole involved in applying it and the silly rules for the following 6-8 hours make this something I will never repeat.  It is so much easier to just apply your own from a bottle.  I have found much less streaks and a more natural cover with either my L'Oreal Sublime Bronze or the Dove Gradual Tan Moisturiser.

Sorry for another bad review but I find so few products/treatments live up to the hype and it annoys me that people aren't honest about them.


N.B.  I  use sunbeds in the 2 weeks preceding any holiday where I will be in the sun so that my skin adjusts to the sun slowly and then I don't get burnt on holiday   I also suffer from Psoriasis and the UV rays help to calm the psoriasis down a lot.


  1. but youre not supposed to shower/baby wipe/cotton wool wipe after a spray tan? the whole point is you leave it for 12 hours, then shower and the result after that first shower is the desired tan. the 12 hours before that are to allow the tan to develop. i would NEVER go out immediately after a spray tan, i have it the night before, dont wash, sleep then shower the following morning and wash it off to get the desired result. its no wonder you were orange, you were supposed to be until you washed it off! idiot.

  2. Whilst I agree that the intention is to leave the top coat on, I think leaving your client looking like a oompa loompa is not a good idea. If you need a coloured top coat so that you can ensure even application, then why not make it a pleasant coloured one like St Tropez/St Moriz do? I am not in favour of any beauty treatment that leaves you looking terrible for 8 hours minimum, I don't mind an hour or two downtime but I have a husband, white sheets and things to do. I am sticking with self application fake tans in future. It comes out just as even, a lot cheaper and I can leave the house within 20 minutes of application should I wish.

  3. I actually just had fake bake done and it's AWFUL. I've been scrubbing myself with lemons for the past two days, hot baths, exfoliating, nothing has worked. Looks like I'm gonna have to live with it until it fades. It's truly awful stuff. I'm quite literally orange! I've never had a result like this before, even when I used to do it from a bottle when I was 16.

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