The dreaded black spots, the sign of clogged pores. The one thing that can ruin your beautiful bronze glow.

We’ve all been there – we’ve spent our evening prepping our skin with exfoliation and moisturiser, we’ve applied our Nouvatan mousse or gradual self-tanner, and glowed inside as we saw the tan develop over the next 24 hours. But then you notice your pores and hair follicles clogged up with fake tan, and now your legs look like they’re full of blackheads! It can be disheartening, but don’t worry, it is actually very normal. The good news is that you can do something about it, too.

What causes it?

Clogged pores means that they were too open at the time you applied your self-tan product. We always recommend following our self-tanning top tips in the lead up to tanning, which involves being clean, shaven and well exfoliated. But often, people follow this regime right before tanning. The problem with this is that our pores are at their most open and largest after a warm shower/bath and exfoliation. Applying your tan at this moment means they are more likely to get clogged.

What can you do to prevent it?

There’s a number of things you can do to prevent your pores from getting clogged by fake tan.

Firstly, you can wait longer between showering and tanning so your pores can close naturally. Wait an hour or two to let your skin settle down after washing and do something else in the meantime!

Secondly, use a tanning mitt when applying your fake tan. Mitts are designed to ensure the tanning solution glides perfectly overt your skin, rather than applying it in a rougher way that could mean it gets stuck in your pores.

Thirdly, you can try applying something cold to your skin. Sounds bizarre, but there’s science behind it! Hot water and exfoliation opens up your pores, whilst cold water can help to close them. You can help your pores close quickly by switching your shower to cold for a quick blast of cold magic.

Alternatively, if this sounds like your worst nightmare, you could rub something cold from the freezer over your problem areas so less self-tan gets into them.

If you suffer from dry skin, then read our blog about the best ways to combat it here.