You were never meant to be “basic”

What is pH balance? We hear it mentioned in relationship to water very often in pools and fish tanks but what does it mean for our skin? In liquids, it refers to the level of acidity caused by carbon dioxide and other elements. When it comes to water, we want an alkaline reading, meaning “not acidic”, so it would be naturally assumed that the pH of your skin should be alkaline as well, right? Actually, you would be wrong!

But wait! If our water should be alkaline, and our bodies are made of water, why shouldn’t my skin be alkaline as well? The answer is simple, for your protection. Our skin is our first natural defense from the elements. Even though we spend so much time applying creams and serums to protect us from the sun and aging, our skin has its own natural defense system. The acid mantle our skin produces protects us from bacteria, allergens and pollution all while retaining moisture. Naturally our skin is meant to have a pH balance of 4.5-5.5. If your pH is higher you could experience acne breakouts, inflammation, dryness, and even sunburn because your skin’s naturally ability to fight bacteria and maintain moisture is lowered. Which means anything you put on your skin could be hurting you instead of helping you! Including your spray tan.

Right about now you may be having one of those “aha” moments when you remember a time that your spray tan lasted less than a few days? Yes, this was probably due to a high pH balance, but don’t worry there are things you can do to lower it and maintain your healthy spray tan glow.

There are lots of pre-spray products out there that claim to lower skin’s pH down to the level of the solution you are using to ensure a longer last tan however none of them are proven or clinically tested. We recommend a more natural approach that will help you look and feel your best.

Your professional iTAN spray technician will take all these factors into consideration when advising you to prep your skin but there are a few things you can do to make their job easier.


Before you head over to iTAN for your next spray tanning session, do a body inventory. Have you been eating a variety of fruits and vegetables, lean protein, naturally occurring probiotics and drinking TONS of water? It will help all of your body’s systems maintain their intended pH balances. That’s right! pH balances are actually different for every system in the body! While our body is meant to be somewhat alkaline (7), our skin and reproductive system are meant to be slightly acidic.

Chill with the products

Use natural products on your skin and not too many! Over cleansing will dry you out and throw your skin’s natural pH off.

Prep Properly

Natural products are the ticket, but immediately before a spray tan, skin should be naked with no products. Shower, shave, and exfoliate before your tan like always-only this time, wait a couple hours before you spray for your skin’s natural oils to replenish. Your skin will be more likely to hold the color, for longer.

Go Natural!

Use a naturally formulated tanning solution. It will have a pH more consistent with your skin and the color will develop and hold longer!  How do you know if a solution has the intended pH? Your best bet is always the naturally derived DHA formulas that iTAN offers at any of our 34 locations. This will ensure an even, long lasting tan, and our monthly iCLUB membership will enable you keep your glow year round!

Happy Spraying!