We’re always down for celebrity beauty hacks and tricks— like the secret behind achieving Rihanna’s blown-out highlight— but, sometimes we come across advice that makes us pause, re-read, and seek a professional opinion before jumping on the bandwagon.
This time around, we hit a serious pause when Ashley Graham said her hack for ridding of spray-tan streaks is rubbing Windex— yes, the household surface and window cleaner— on them. Those annoying, discolored lines appear when water, or any liquid, come in contact with the skin before washing off the tan’s initial pigments. And although it’s only a small window of time where this can occur, if not taken care of, the streaks last until the tan fades completely.
So, when Graham posted her streaky legs to her Instagram story this past weekend, we felt a little reassured that the tragedy happens to everyone. And, truthfully, we were excited to hear how the model rids of the pesky lines…until she picked up the bottle of Windex, sprayed the cleaner onto a paper towel, and went directly to her legs to buff out the lines. She continued to rub until the lines disappeared, and while it worked, we couldn’t get past the fact that she took a household cleaner to her skin.
We asked Dr. Ted Lain, an MBA Board-Certified Dermatologist, what he thought of the trick and he adamantly warned against it. “I would not recommend applying Windex to the skin. It contains 5% ammonia and isopropyl alcohol, both of which can be irritating to the skin, and can cause issues with breathing due to irritation of the airway.”
But if you really need to get rid of those lines and are debating that bottle of Windex in your hands, medical aesthetician Holly Cutler of FACE Skincare~Medical~Wellness, has a better option. “A much safer alternative for correcting spray tan stains is to use a salicylic toner on a cotton ball and wipe the area that needs correcting. The salicylic acid will break through oil and exfoliate dead skin to help get the stain off. The Glycolic Micro-Peel Pads by The Skin Saint are also a great option. The pre-soaked pads provide a higher dosage of active ingredients that are great for the skin, too.”
The final word: Don’t take Windex to your skin, no matter how tempting. Although it works for Graham, we wish someone would tell her it’s damaging her skin!