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Of all the things feared during a spray tan gone wrong — stains, streaks, splotches — you might have never considered that bright green armpits would be one of them. This common mistake is a result of wearing antiperspirant/deodorant while tanning. The DHA turns it green once it comes in contact, so make sure to thoroughly wash it off before your session. Products like deodorants, moisturizers, perfumes, and makeup cause a reaction with spray tans and instantly turns green. This can also be the result of sweat on the skin. Fortunately, this will wash off the next day, and it won’t affect the final color of your spray tan.

Before a spray tan, it’s best not to moisturize at all, as you could risk going green. Moisturizer will also create a barrier on your skin, which means the spray tan might not take very well, making your final color lighter than expected. Sometimes after a shower, especially if you have dry patches on your skin, shower gel might not budge. This will result in a green reaction in the area where the shower gel or soap hasn’t washed off. To prevent this from happening, make sure you rinse your body thoroughly before your spray tanning session.

How to prevent your spray tan going green

In a nutshell, if you have certain areas that are green — such as your armpits, your face, or small patches — is the result of poor preparation.

helpful tanning tips


  • Wash off all your deodorant and perfume
  • Don’t wear makeup
  • Don’t moisturize or wear body oils
  • Ensure you wash all shower gel and soap off your skin before spray tanning

Remember, don’t panic; if only certain areas of your body appear green, it is because you have a barrier on your skin, and it will come off when you rinse it off.