Professional Tips & Advice

How to fake tan over body hair

4 Min Read Friday 14th July 2023

It’s time to squash a popular tanning myth… you don’t have to wax or shave your entire body before fake tanning. While many people think that prior to applying any kind of tan, your body needs to be completely smooth and free of hair, that simply isn’t the case. It’s easy and straightforward to tan over body hair, from a hairy chest or moustache to a full beard, when you know how.

Below, our tanning experts here at Sienna X have put together lots of tips to make tanning over body hair as easy as pie.


If you’ve got a particularly long beard or lengthy chest hair, it’s recommended that you prune the area with scissors or a trimmer before starting. Don’t worry, there is no need to completely shave and remove your beard or other unwanted hair. Just a few snips to shorten unruly growth will make the job simpler and ensure the self-tan clings to your skin rather than your hair. Longer hairs will prevent the tan from reaching to skin and can often lead to a patchy or uneven tan. Making sure that your beard or chest hair is evenly trimmed will help leave an even and glowing finish to your tan.


Are you planning to tan immediately after a shower? This is absolutely fine, and is often a good idea as your skin will be free from dirt and toxins, letting the tan sit on the skin nicely. However, before doing so, make sure to double-check that your hair is completely dry before you begin applying any product. Wet body hair essentially acts as a bit of a barrier to the tan and doesn’t allow it to connect with the skin properly. Wet body hair simply doesn’t work well with tanner and the extra moisture can create streaks, leaving you with an unwanted pattern on your tan.


You might forget that during a tan, it’s important to make sure that your hair is out of the way, as the last thing you want is the risk of tan staining your hair. Encourage your tan to look as natural as possible by protecting your sideburns and hairline from ‘grabbing’ any colour. We recommend using a touch of Sienna X Secret Tan Primer applied over the areas you don’t want to tan will act as a barrier to tanning over this body hair.


When you’re looking into the different tanning options available, there are a few different routes that you can choose depending on the type of tan and finish you desire. If you’re looking at the best option for applying fake tan over body hair, a tanning spray or tanning mousse might be your best bet. Tanning lotions are fantastic for gliding across smooth skin but can be trickier to blend into a hairy chest, legs and arms. We recommend you opt for a tanning spray or mousse instead because the lighter texture is easier to buff into the skin even when applied over hairy areas. A spray is ideal for the face too and lends the skin a flawless, uniform colour finish.


If you’re thinking about the best way to apply tan over body hair, look no further than our Luxury Self Tan Mitt. A tanning mitt is perfect for buffing tanner into the skin and creating a seamless glow that looks as close to the real thing as possible. A textured mitt will also soak up any extra product and reduce the risk of a patchy finish if you’ve been accidentally heavy-handed with the mousse. Not only that, but a tanning mitt will be more forgiving when applying tan over areas of body hair. Sweep the mitt very gently over your underarms (without adding more product!) to recreate the subtle appearance of a natural tan in the sun.


Probably the most important piece of advice we can give you when applying fake tan over body hair…..take your time! This goes for applying tan in general, but particularly when applying over body hair as you’ll need to pay more attention to ensure you create the best even finish possible. There’s no rush to the finish line; take as much time as you need and cover all areas. It is also worth remembering that the guide colour isn’t an indication of the final result — if you want to go darker once the colour has developed you can always re-apply as desired to create the perfect hue for you.

0 item in your basket