This year, I decided to give the DIY tan a try. Last season, my first season competing, I researched the DIY tan as well as having the event tanner company do my competition tan and I was way too nervous last year to try and figure out one more thing in this bodybuilding sport so I had the event tanner do my tans. BUT, I had nothing to fear. Doing the tan myself this year was very easy.
Also check out- Your Competition Tan and What to Expect
In this post:
- Written “How To” with a list of needed supplies
- Video tutorial- also showing the first coat we applied to my back
- Matching Make-up
A competition tan is very different from an everyday local tanning salon spray tan in that a competition tan is MUCH darker and washes off every easily with water.
I opted for the Jan Tana color collection products because those products gave me the best color last year. It costs $80 and will last 2 shows, maybe 3. I have also looked into Dark As and Pro Tan which many people use and seem to be happy with them. Dream Tan has been banned at most shows I have competed in due to the fact that it rubs off too easily and stains everything at the venue. ( I did use Pro Tan and loved it for my 2016 season. See more on that: click here)
In this color collection you get:
Skin Prep– use this 1-2 weeks prior to applying your tan to exfoliate. You can also just use a sugar/baking soda mix to exfoliate in the shower instead.
Moisturizing Lotion– this you don’t really need and can use any moisturizer after you show but not the day you put on your tan. No lotions or deodorant the days you apply the tan.
Ultra 1 Color– apply this tan solution the morning of. 1-2 coats.
High Def Color– apply this the night before the show . 1 coat.
(Very dark skin such as African american skin color only need 1, maybe two coats to brighten up skin tone- and is necessary)
Green Away– Use this the day of the show. On some people, like myself, my armpits turn green (which isn’t noticeable on stage) due the pH of my skin or some such thing. Spray this on, blend a little, touch up with the High def color and you are set.
Glaze– oil up before going on stage. Use sparingly!
Directions on using Jan Tana from their site click here.
Do you need this whole collection— no. You can use a mix of sugar scrub and baking soda to exfoliate in the shower instead of the skin prep. You can use your own lotion leading up to the show. You don’t even need both colors. You would just use more coats of the high definition color. I barely used the green away the day of the show. I kept touching up with a little bit of color on my arm pits and blended. Instead of the glaze, you can buy Banana Boat spf 4 tanning oil from Walgreens to use sparingly before you go on stage.
Update: I did use Pro Tan Overnight Color and Pro Tan Top Coat. I loved it, it didn’t turn me green and it went on GREAT! See more on that during my 2016 Contest Prep as well as on show day. I also used the Jan Tana Glaze I had from the year before for oil before I hit the stage.
Prep your skin
In the two weeks leading up to your show, exfoliate your entire body daily. I made my own sugar scrub with 2 parts sugar, 1 part grapeseed oil (or almond, jojoba oil etc). Avoid corn or soybean oil.
You will need:
- Gloves – for the person helping you or yourself
- Drop cloth (or just stand in the shower to catch drips from the bottle or spills)
- Blue Microfiber Applicator Pads – found in the car detail isle at Walmart or other similar stores. About $1.50 for a 2 pack.
- Tan solution
The day before your show, shower, soap up and shave 8 hours prior to applying the first coat of tan. Shaving and then putting on the tan shortly after could cause irritation. DO NOT put on ANY deodorant or lotions that day.
That night, the night before the show, you can rinse off in the shower just to freshen up. If you wash and condition your hair, make sure you don’t leave any conditioner residue on your back. Dry off and now you are ready. Again, no lotions or deodorant. Standing on a drop cloth or in a dry bathtub, put on gloves and apply the ultra 1 color or Pro Tan Overnight color. Use long sweeping strokes. This blends very very well. Putting on a coat takes about 20-30 minutes. Let it dry for about 5-20 minutes. Put on another coat of needed. Once dry, put on a dark colored long sleeve shirt and pants. Nothing else- no bra or undies. You will sleep in these clothes. Also, sleep on old sheets.
Day of your show: Get up and sometime between 5-6 am, apply the high def color:1-2 coats or the Pro Tan Top Coat about 30 minutes apart. For figure or physique, you will definitely want to do 2 coats of this. You can do this yourself until you get to your back, then have someone help you. Don’t forget to get all the nooks, cranny’s and creases! Then let dry for 5-10 minutes and you are all set. Put your dark clothes back on, where flip flops and bring gloves and rags to the show for people that may help touch up your tan.
Just remember, your tan will be seen from 10 feet or more away. It may not be perfect from your view if there are dark spots or shave bumps that are really dark, don’t worry. Just get it as even as you can and call it good. 🙂
Also, Competition tans are designed to wash off at the end of the night so don’t get it wet! I still wash my hands and may touch them up a bit as a final step before I leave the house to the venue. See Your Competition Tan- What to Expect to figure out how to pee and not splash on your tan… which will happen and you can very easily touch it up!
Also, expect to touch up your competition tan throughout they day so bring your top coat, gloves, an old towel and buff pad to apply it.
This video will show you an application of the first coat. A second and third coat will need to be applied to reach the desired color. Otherwise, the stage lights may wash out your skin and your muscle definition won’t be enhanced.
Pro tip: during the show, you will wearing a robe or a t-shirt and pants… with nothing under it. To prevent nipping out, get some silicon nipple covers. They stay on all day!
I don’t have my face tanned with the event tanner or with DIY competition tan. I like to wash my face the morning of the show as I am very acne prone.
Last year I used the Jan Tana foundation with a matching Sephora pressed powder but my face was so incredibly shiny and no amount of powder toned that down. The Jan Tana foundation went on well and blended easily. This year, I opted for the Sophora’s Make-up forever professional Mat Velvet+ foundation in color 75 and its matching pressed powder. Now that worked like a charm! I barely had to retouch all day long. That stuff was shine free and stayed put. It also went on REALLY well and matched the Jan Tana tan perfectly. This make-up may not match other tans as other tans may be more brown. Jan Tana color tends to be more orangish. Pro Tan is much more brown and I had to buy foundation with no red undertones.
I used a bunch of random eye make-up colors that included the darkest browns and greys I could find.
My lipstick color this year was fabulous! I used Elizabeth Arden neoclassic coral 12. I have always been a lip gloss girl which is what I tried for my first 3 competitions and found the color didn’t stay and it just didn’t work well. This year I used the Elizabeth Arden lipstick – man that color was awesome and the lipstick had stay power! I put it on once before pre-judging and once before finals and that was it!