The Ultimate Guide To Removing Fake Tan From Your Hands

fake tan hands

We’ve all been there – you’ve applied your fake tan flawlessly, only to discover that your hands are now a telltale shade of orange. Fear not! In this blog post, we’ll share tips and tricks on how to effectively remove fake tan from your hands and restore them to their natural color.

From DIY home remedies to professional products, we have the ultimate solutions for anyone seeking a streak-free bronze glow.

Why Is It Hard To Remove Self Tan From Hands?

Removing fake tan residue from hands can be quite challenging for several reasons. Firstly, our hands tend to have more calloused areas due to daily activities which result in dryness and thicker layers of dead skin cells.

This causes the DHA in self-tanner products to react more intensely on those rougher patches of skin compared to smoother areas like arms or legs.

The good news is that there are numerous tips and tricks you can use at home that aid in effectively removing fake tan stains from your hands without causing any damage to your skin.

Methods For Effective Fake Tan Removal From Hands

Let us explore various tried-and-true methods for effectively removing fake tan from your hands. From simple household ingredients to specialized products, these techniques will help you bid farewell to those unwanted tan remnants, leaving your hands looking fresh and natural once again. 

Baking Soda And Water Paste

Baking soda and water paste is an effective and inexpensive way to remove fake tan residue from your hands. This method works by combining a small amount of baking soda and a splash of water until a paste forms, which you then gently rub onto the affected area with circular motions.

It’s important to note that this method may not work for everyone, especially those with sensitive or dry skin.

Lemon Juice

Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is another effective remedy for removing fake tan from your hands. This citric acid-rich fruit acts as a natural bleach and removes the tan residue on your skin effectively.

Simply cut a lemon in half, squeeze some juice onto your hands, and rub it gently. Leave it on for about ten minutes before washing it off with warm water.

It’s important to note that using lemon juice may dry out your skin, so be sure to moisturize after removal. Additionally, if you have any cuts or open wounds on your hands, avoid using this method as the acidic nature of the lemon could cause irritation or further damage.

Tan Remover Products

Aside from natural remedies and DIY recipes, tan remover products are also available in the market. These products come in various forms such as gels, creams, sprays, or wipes that are specifically formulated to dissolve fake tan without harming your skin.

One popular option is St. Tropez Tan Remover Mousse which promises to gently remove stubborn tan without scrubbing.

When using tan remover products, it’s important to read and follow the instructions carefully and test on a small area first before applying it all over your hands. It’s also advisable to choose a product that suits your skin type and sensitivity level.


Believe it or not, toothpaste is another effective method for removing fake tan from your hands. It contains mild abrasives that help to exfoliate the skin and buff away any stubborn residue.

Apply a small amount of toothpaste onto your hands, focusing on the areas with the most color buildup, then gently rub it in for a few minutes before rinsing off with warm water.

It’s important to note that not all toothpaste formulas are created equal – opt for a whitening toothpaste or one that specifically mentions stain removal on its packaging.

Additionally, make sure you rinse thoroughly after using this method, as leaving any leftover toothpaste on your skin can cause irritation or breakouts.

White Vinegar

White vinegar is another readily available household item that can help remove fake tan from your hands. It works by breaking down the pigment of the tan and lifting it off your skin.

Mix equal parts white vinegar and water in a bowl or container, then soak your hands for 10 to 15 minutes. You can also apply the mixture directly onto areas with stubborn tan residue using a cotton ball or pad.

It’s important to note that while vinegar is effective, it can be harsh on your skin so make sure to moisturize well afterwards. Additionally, avoid using undiluted vinegar as it may cause irritation or burns on sensitive skin.

Sugar Scrub Exfoliation

Sugar Scrub Exfoliation

Another effective method for removing fake tan residue from your hands is through sugar scrub exfoliation. Sugar scrubs consist of granulated sugar mixed with a moisturizing agent such as coconut oil, olive oil, or honey.

The coarse texture of the sugar helps to slough off dead skin cells and remove the top layer of tanned skin while the moisturizing agent hydrates and nourishes your hands.

Not only does this method help to remove fake tan residue, but it also leaves your hands feeling soft and smooth. You can make a simple sugar scrub at home by mixing one part granulated sugar with one part coconut oil or olive oil.

Makeup Remover

Makeup remover may seem like an unlikely solution to fake tan residue, but it can actually be quite effective. Just apply a small amount of the makeup remover such as micellar water onto your hands and rub it in gently before washing it off with warm water.

One thing to note is that not all makeup removers will work for this purpose. Ensure you choose one that’s oil-based as it has more powerful solvents than water-based ones.

Prevention Tips To Avoid Stained Hands

Orange hands are one common issue that many people encounter when fake tanning, which can be a dead giveaway of an artificial tan. Fortunately, there are effective prevention strategies that can help you avoid this unwanted side effect!

Apply A Barrier Cream Before Self-tanning

Before applying a fake tan, it is crucial to apply a barrier moisturizing cream on your hands and feet. A barrier cream acts as a protective layer that prevents the tan from staining your skin, ensuring that you get an even finish without any streaks or darker patches.

When choosing a barrier cream, opt for one that is specifically designed for self-tanning and has hydrating ingredients like shea butter or coconut oil. Apply the cream generously onto areas where you want to avoid getting tanned, such as around your nails and between fingers and toes.

Once applied, give it time to dry before proceeding with your self-tan application.

Wash Hands Immediately After Application

Wash Hands Immediately After Application

One of the simplest yet most effective ways to prevent fake tan stains on your hands is to wash them immediately after application. This is especially important if you are using a self-tanner that requires a manual application or a spray tan that involves misting the product onto your skin.

When washing your hands, use mild soap and lukewarm water to gently remove any residue from the palms, fingers, and nails.

If you’re in a rush and don’t have access to running water, keep some wet wipes handy for on-the-go cleaning. Alternatively, you can also use hand sanitizer to remove excess tanner from your hands.

Use A Tanning Mitt Or Gloves

Another foolproof way to avoid staining your hands is by using a tanning mitt or gloves. These handy accessories are designed to help you apply self-tanner evenly, without leaving any residue on your hands.

Using a tanning mitt or gloves also ensures targeted application and avoids streaking or smudging. Plus, they provide an added layer of protection for your hands against harsh chemicals in spray tan formulas.

Make sure you replace your mitt after it begins to wear, or you will find the tan will begin to seep through your mitt onto your tan after wear and tear!

Opt For A Gradual Tan Instead Of An Instant One

Instead of jumping straight into an instant tan that could cause staining on your hands, you can try a gradual tanning lotion. A gradual tan will slowly build up color on your skin over a few days and give you more control over the shade.

This is especially helpful for those new to self-tanning or still trying to find their perfect shade.

Not only does using a gradual tanning lotion reduce the risk of stained hands, but it also allows for targeted application in areas where you want more color or need to even out blotchiness.

Choose The Right Shade For Your Skin Tone

Choosing the right shade for your skin tone is one of the most important things you need to do before applying fake tan. If you go for a darker shade that does not match your skin tone, it will be very obvious and unflattering.

To avoid this tanning mishap, take into account your undertones and choose an appropriate shade. A good trick here is to compare yourself with someone who has similar coloring in terms of hair and eye color as well as undertones.

This way, it’s easier to see how different shades will look on your skin type.


In conclusion, getting rid of fake tan from your hands doesn’t have to be a frustrating experience. With the right tips and tricks, you can easily remove any stubborn residue and avoid unsightly stains in the future.

Remember to be patient and gentle with your skin, use effective homemade remedies like baking soda or lemon juice. 

Alternatively, follow the prevention tips and you shouldn’t have to worry about blotchy orange hands at all!

Removing Fake Tan From Hands FAQS

Can I use regular soap to remove fake tan from my hands?

While regular soap alone may not effectively remove all traces of fake tan from your skin, it can be helpful when used in conjunction with other removal techniques such as exfoliation or the use of specialized products.

Will scrubbing with a loofah or exfoliating glove help remove fake tan stains?

Yes, scrubbing with a loofah or exfoliating glove can be an effective method for removing fake tan stains from the hands. The exfoliating action helps to slough off the dead skin cells that hold onto the tan pigment, gradually fading the stains. Here’s how you can use a loofah or exfoliating glove for fake tan removal.

It’s important to note that the effectiveness of this method may vary depending on the intensity of the fake tan and how deeply it has penetrated the skin. If the stains are stubborn, you may need to try additional fake tan removal techniques or products to achieve the desired results.

How can I prevent getting too much fake tan on my hands in the first place?

To avoid getting too much self tanner on your hands in the first place you should consider wearing gloves or a mitt during the application or washing your hands thoroughly immediately after applying. 

You may also want to try using a gradual tanning product which will build up over time instead of creating an immediate effect.