Self-tanner formulas have come a long way. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean you’ll always achieve the perfect glow. Streaks do happen, even to the best of us. The good news is there are some simple solutions that actually work. The next time you find yourself waking up to zebra-striped limbs, here’s what you can do (other than panic).
To avoid streaks in the first place, you should always prep with a body scrub to slough off dead skin cells, especially on areas that are prone to buildup (like the elbows, knees, and feet). But if you skipped this crucial step and are now paying the consequences, a gentle scrub down with a product like Fresh Brown Sugar Body Polish ($65; sephora.com) can help even out color.
Turn to Your Fridge
The same way lemons lighten your skin and hair, they can lighten unwanted self-tanner marks. Grab a lemon wedge and squeeze juice onto a cotton pad. Wipe to remove obvious splotches.
For extreme streakiness, though, mix a few teaspoons of lemon juice with baking soda (a natural exfoliant) to create a paste. Rub it on while you're in shower to encourage the tan to fade.
Buff Away Blotches
If you experience mishaps often, keep a removal product like Bronze Buffer’s Bronze Self-Tan Remover ($10; sephora.com) on hand. The reusable sponges are designed to wipe away discolored areas, including those found on the ankles, fingers, and palms.
Bathe in Baby Oil
Need an excuse to unwind? Pour three caps of baby oil in warm bath water and allow your body to soak for at least 20 minutes. You'll soften a botched tan and your skin will be moisturized.
Apply More Self-Tanner
If you prefer to fill in spots you might’ve missed, try correcting imperfections after exfoliating with a product like L'Oréal Sublime Bronze Self-Tanning Towelettes ($12; ulta.com).