Self-tanning lotion adds color to pale skin without the dangers of exposure to sunlight. The lotion comes in varying forms, from cheap products that often produce uneven or unnatural coloring to expensive products that produce an even, natural-looking tan. The one thing all of these products have in common, regardless of manufacturer, is that they will stain the palms of your hands. Most self-tanning lotion will fade after a few days, but if you can’t wait that long, you can remove it from your hands with a little patience and a common household item.

Things You'll Need

Wash your hands well with soap and water. Do not dry them.

Place a bit of baking soda on a loofah or rag and rub the stained areas of your hands until the self-tanning lotion lifts from your skin. Rinse your hands in cool water.

If all the stain does not immediately lift, wait a couple of hours and repeat the cleaning with baking soda. Do not scrub your hands raw.

Exfoliate your hands with a gentle exfoliating lotion and rinse well with cool water.


  • Exfoliate your skin before applying self-tanning lotion as the lotion clings to dead skin cells and gives your skin a mottled appearance.

  • Wear gloves when applying self-tanning lotion in order to avoid staining your skin. Apply self-tanning lotion to the back of your hands and fingers using a cotton swab or Q-tip for even skin tone from your forearms to your hands.