There are two components when you are talking about express or rapid development spray tan solutions. These are the 1 hour or 2 hour solutions that allow you have a warm water rinse at 1-4 hours after the initial application.

The first element is how long before showering and the second element is how long it takes for the tan to reach its final colour – development time.

The first element is dependent on how dark you would like your tan to be. If the solution is only one strength (as many 1 or 2 hours are) they are normally around the 15-18% mark, while this sounds like a high percentage of DHA, keep in mind you never reach the full percentage as you don’t have it on long enough – that’s why with such a high percentage of DHA, if you sleep in it (6-8 hours) you over develop and the orange colour can result.  As a general guide, 1 hour is for a light tan, 2 hour is for a medium tan and 3 hours for a dark tan. However as everyone’s skin tone is different, the amount of time you need to leave a rapid spray tan on is a personal preference that sometimes takes a few tans to find the optimal time for your skin type with that particular solution.

When you do wash off, it is important to keep it to a short warm water rinse, no soap or shower gel and pat dry, no moisturiser needed at this rinse off. Start the moisturiser at the next shower. The reason for this, is that when you have the first shower, you are just washing the bronzer and solution off to prevent it from reaching the full percentage. However the tan that has activated on your skin will continue to develop and the colour will get darker for the next 8-12 hours. It is important to note, that some people take longer than others for the tan to fully develop, so on some people, it might take a full 24 hours to have the full colour develop. So if you wanted the tan for a Saturday night event, a Thursday night spray tan is the best option if you take longer to develop or Friday night spray tan is the best option if your skin only needs the additional 8-12 hours after rinse off for the full colour to develop.

If you are new to spray tanning, or are having a spray tan and trialling a new brand of spray tan solution, it is always best to air on the side of caution. If it is your first ever spray tan, 1-2 hours max, if you are seasoned tanner and it is a new solution, you will know how tan takes and develops on your skin so 2 hours is always going to produce a fantastic result.

It is personal preference regarding if you go for a solution you sleep in overnight vs. one that is a rapid wash off in 1-4 hours. Personally I LOVE the rapid solutions, I love getting it done, waiting my time, washing off and then getting on with my day or night. I am also a moderate developer, tan takes to my skin really quickly and I have colour from the very first rinse, when I wake up in the morning, my colour is fully developed.

So don’t be afraid of rapid solutions, once you start and try them, you will be hooked!