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Experimenting with sunless tanning at home (tea)

Updated on September 29, 2012

Home Sunless Tanning Experiment

As many people out there, I have somewhat of a pale complexion and would love to have a nice base tan. I decided to look into some different ideas, in the past I have tried several self tanning products and most of them either are so light you don’t really see a difference or they turn your orange especially around hairlines and joints. I ran into some information so I decided to do my own research on it , try it out for myself. Have your ever heard about the self tanning theory using tea bags? I had, but never tried it but decided I would. So recently I sat down, thought it out and made a plan. I took notes and a few pictures so I could share my results, no matter the outcome.

Getting Ready

For my test I used small portions because I didn’t want to waste not knowing the results. 3 large tea bags, 2 cups of water, a sponge or gauze seemed to work. I simply prepared the tea similar to how I would when making some at home to drink. Brought the water to a boil then added the tea bags, kept it at a low boil for about 5 minutes. Turned it off and poured the tea in a bowl to cool (kept the tea bags in it).

The process

Before beginning, I took a quick shower, and exfoliated well to remove any dead skin etc... I let it sit long enough to cool from boiling to warm. It can be a little messy, so I decided to go on my porch for this experiment, brought my phone so as I sit I would have something to do to occupy my mind. I used gauze , soaked the gauze in the tea and simply wet my leg, lightly going up and down to cover every spot. I did find also that there is no special direction to put it on, you can dab, rub, circles or whichever your prefer, it seems to leave no streaks, which is a huge plus. I wet it down good, let it set for a few minutes and when it was almost dry I lighty rubbed it in with my hand to makes sure it was spread evenly. Allowed it to dry for approximately 5 minutes, then repeated the process. Keeping in mind that once rinsed or washed it would probably lighten, I repeated my process 10 times. I could see a big difference, as I only did one leg to test it. I decided to leave it without rinsing for several hours as I went about my day. Approximately 6 hours later I showered without exfoliating and to my surprise my skin remained a nice tinted color.

In Conclusion

The next morning when I woke, It seems most of the tint is gone, some remains, however there is no color appeared to rubbed off on my towel or sheets. It is still there but light. I did find it worked enough to where If you are looking for a quick tan for the day, this would be a great choice. So I am considering taking this experiment a step further, Once I do that I will share the steps I took and results.


After a fresh shower and exfoliating
After a fresh shower and exfoliating

After 10 applications- lightly rubbed on, let sit 5 minutes then repeat


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      Anonymous 3 years ago

      what tea kind or brand do u use

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      Marisol 4 years ago

      I did what you did (3 tea bags), but realized that TWENTY (20) tea bags worked far better and faster. There was plenty of tannins (the pigment that gives tea its color) available for the skin to soak up. Don't confuse tannins with tannic acid, which is NOT in tea! Also, realize that tannins are simply polyphenols (strong antioxidants) and healthy for you!!

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      thanks 5 years ago

      Thanks for uploading the picture! I bought the stuff for the tea tanner awhile ago and was always wondering if it even worked and if i should try it or not and if it was a waste of time or if after all that time it would look awful/uneven.

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      Gross 5 years ago

      you live in a disgusting house