Spray tan products and kits have been popping up all over the market. These beauty products have made it possible to get a sunkissed glow at home. If you can’t afford weekly tanning sessions or if you don’t feel comfortable stripping down in public, then the next best solution is to buy spray tanner. If you apply it properly, then you’ll leave your home with a beautiful glow that complements your summer wardrobe. Here are some must-have tips for using spray tanner.

1. Designate a Spray Tanning Room

You should choose an area in your home that you’ll want to hold your spray tan sessions. This should be a space that doesn’t have all-white walls and flooring. A DIY spray tan can quickly become a mess if you’re not well-prepared.

Keep dark towels around in case of accidents, mistakes, or spills. You should also keep in mind that your spray tan can stain the ceiling, floors, tiles, walls, and other areas of your room. You’ll want to reserve this room for spray tanning sessions, rather than just choosing a different room each time. This reduces accidents and makes you more prepared for this messy process.

2. Exfoliate & Prepare Your Skin

The next thing you should do is exfoliate and prepare your skin. Even some of the best spray tans can appear splotchy if you don’t scrub your skin beforehand. The key is to find an exfoliator or scrub that doesn’t contain oils. The oils in most of these products can prevent your tan from sticking.

Remove deodorants and fragrance before applying your self-tanner. This could react with your tan and cause you to turn green rather than bronzed. It’s best to shower beforehand, in which you’ll also exfoliate and prepare your skin. You’ll want to pay extra attention to dry areas, such as your elbows, heels, and knees.

If you have long hair, then you’ll want to pull it back into a ponytail. Then wear a shower cap to keep your hair in place during your spray tan session. You should also apply moisturizer to your eyebrows to prevent them from turning orange. When applying the spray tanner to the driest areas of your body, you’ll want to apply a thin layer or the remaining product into your elbows, feet, hands, and heels.

3. Practice a Spray Tanning Session

If you’re new to spray tanning or self-tanning in general, it’s best to start with a practice session. You can practice as often as you want so you can feel comfortable with the self-tanning experience. You’ll want to use an easy, no-commitment self-tanner for your first time. The best kind of product to practice with is a one-day or wash-off spray tanner.

This allows you to get a better idea of what self-tanner looks like on your skin and you can perfect your self-tanning technique. If you don’t want to get too dark, then you’ll want to use a gradual spray-on tanner. Or, you can use any old spray tanner and wash it off before the color develops. It appears lighter than usual and prevents mistakes from happening.

4. Use the Right Tools

While most spray tans come in a single bottle, there are others that come as part of a kit. They include all of the tools you need to get the perfect tan. Some spray-on tanners include a wide variety of products such as exfoliator, a tanning mitt, moisturizer, and additional spray-on tanners for the face, body, and hard-to-reach areas. Some even come with towelettes to quickly correct or remove mistakes before your tan sets in.

5. Apply the Tanner Evenly

Even though you’re applying spray tanner to your body, you still need to wear gloves or a mitt to avoid getting the product on your hands. Your body should be completely dry before use spray-on tanner so you can prevent streaks from happening. Hold the spray tanner eight inches away from your body while spraying. You can also enlist the help of a close friend or family member to spray the tanner onto hard-to-reach areas, such as your back.

6. Self-Tan Your Face & Hands Last

Your goal should be to apply the spray tan lightly on your face. Don’t apply too much product on your face since the color appears darker on there than other areas of your body. You also don’t want to spray it directly to your face. Instead, spray the self-tanner to different areas of your face and body or where the sun naturally hits your skin.

Your face and hands should be the last resort. Just make sure to apply the tanner evenly to both of these parts. You don’t want to be generous when it comes to these areas. Avoid applying excess product on your arms, face, and hands. Another reason not to spray directly to these areas is because it always looks streaky and fake.

7. Don’t Fear If You Make a Mistake

Mistakes are common — especially when you’re spray tanning for the first time. If you notice orange spots, streaks, or dry patches, don’t give up hope yet. There are several ways to correct these mistakes.

One way is to apply body oil and leave it on for 10 minutes, then scrub it off with a hot washcloth. Hair removal cream is another effective method, but it’s not ideal for sensitive skin types.

Apply the hair removal cream to the area with a Q-Tip and leave it on as recommended. Or, if you find that your spray tanning kit comes with tan remover, then apply it and leave it on for a minute before removing it with a hot washcloth.

If you don’t have any of these products lying around your house, then your next bet is to look in your refrigerator. Combine ice water with lemon juice and soak a washcloth in it. Then warm the washcloth in the microwave for less than 60 seconds, allow it to cool, and gently rub it over those areas where you have too much tanner.

These tips should prevent you from making self-tanning mistakes with a spray tan. Over time, you’ll become a professional and your friends will be asking for your help.