Magic Eraser to Remove Spray Tan: Is it Safe & Effective?

If you’ve ever asked yourself or asked around about how to get rid of a fake tan fast, then you probably already know about one of the internet’s most popular hacks for removing a patchy tan – using a magic eraser.

Yes, you’ve read that correctly.

A magic eraser is a popular washing tool usually used to clean stains throughout the house, but more and more people swear by using a magic eraser to remove spray tan or get rid of badly applied fake tan.

If you’re anything like me, you’re probably now wondering if this is even safe to use on your skin? Or for that matter, is it really effective for removing fake tan?

I’ve got you covered. 

Today, we’re going to jump on board this ongoing debate of whether or not to use a magic eraser to remove spray tan. On top of that, we’re also going to talk about other great ways to remove spray tan effectively and safely. So, let’s dive in.

Key Takeaways

  • A magic eraser is a versatile cleaning tool, made of melamine, which is a chemical compound generally used in cleaning tools.
  • A magic eraser can be an effective and safe spray tan removal if you use it properly.
  • The key to successfully removing a spray tan using a magic eraser is to be gentle. Don’t get too aggressive while scrubbing off the unwanted patches of your fake tan.
  • There are many different ways to fix your uneven spray tan. You can use a magic eraser, lemon juice, oil, toothpaste, baking soda, or hit the steam.

What Is a Magic Eraser?

A magic eraser is a useful washing tool generally used to clean scuff marks, scrub dirty surfaces, and remove buildups of grease. It’s made of soft melamine foam, and this ingredient is the secret behind the “magic” of this sponge. 


A while back, it was discovered that melamine foam is an effective abrasive cleaner, so when you scrub it along a surface, it works like a fine piece of sandpaper and gets into the tiny pits of objects to remove grime, dirt, and dirt. What’s even better about this ingredient is that it absorbs the debris once the stain is eliminated from the surface.

Magic erasers are also quite simple to use. You only need to wet the sponge slightly to activate the melamine foam. Then, you can proceed with scrubbing the desired surfaces in circular and gentle motions.

Since magic erasers contain “formaldehyde-melamine-sodium bisulfite”, there were some health concerns around using them for household purposes. But in reality, the reason why people started getting worried about magic erasers was because of the word “formaldehyde”. 

However, according to scientists, magic erasers are not toxic and are completely safe to use in household products. The actual ingredient in magic erasers doesn’t have the same effect as normal formaldehyde which makes it completely risk-free.

Is It Effective as a Fake Tan Remover?

Now that you understand what a magic sponge eraser is and how it works, you must be wondering whether it can really remove fake tan effectively. 

The answer is yes, it’s definitely effective for removing spray tan and fixing orange splodges. It basically works as an exfoliator that removes the spray tan from the outer layer of the skin.

To understand how this happens, let’s go one step back and chat a little bit about the spray tanning process. 

When you spray a tanning solution on your skin, you’re not just spraying color on your skin. What actually happens is that the spray tan formula reacts with the dead skin cells on your skin, leaving them in a darker color.

Spray tanning solutions contain an ingredient called DHA which darkens the skin through a chemical reaction with the dead skin cells. Because of this reaction, your skin is left looking super tanned and radiant.

Going back to the magic sponge erasers now. So, to get rid of self-tan, you need to get rid of the outer layer of the skin that has been tanned by the self-tanning solution. 

Just like when scrubbing off dirty surfaces, the magic eraser can help exfoliate the skin, remove the dead skin cells, and eliminate other impurities. 

As much as this sounds ideal, you still need to be careful with how you use magic erasers on your skin.

Related: What is the best spray tan machine?

Is It Safe to Use on Skin?

As you can see, magic erasers are pretty effective in removing dead skin and getting rid of fake tan. However, an important question arises – are they safe to use?

The answer is not so simple. Some people warn us to avoid using magic sponges on the skin, while others swear by it. But at the end of the day, you’re the one that needs to make the final choice on whether or not you wish to try a magic eraser on your skin.

Everyone’s skin is different. 

If you have sensitive skin, you should be careful about using these types of products. They contain compounds that can be harsh on your skin and cause chemical burns. Some people have even reported getting skin irritation, burns, and rash after using a magic eraser.

On another hand, there are plenty of people who’ve used magic sponge erasers to fix spray tanning mistakes and even out their fake tans.

Make sure you weigh out all your options before you decide to try a magic eraser on your skin. Stay tuned for some alternative (less harsh) options for removing fake tan.

How to Use Magic Eraser to Remove Spray Tan?

When it comes to using magic erasers for spray tan removal, the key is to be gentle. As always, I recommend patch-testing this product like all other products before you proceed. This may help save you the trouble later.


Start by wetting the sponge with some lukewarm water. Then, begin scrubbing the skin gently and be careful not to overdo it. 

A gentle scrub will be sufficient to remove your fake tan effectively without compromising the skin. If you use the magic eraser properly, you will not cause any damage to the skin and will effectively remove your patchy tan.

On another hand, if your scrub gets too aggressive, you could cause everlasting damage to the skin, making it saggy, drier, and irritated.

If possible, try to avoid using magic erasers on the delicate areas of your body, such as your face or arms. It’s better to use it on tougher areas such as knees or elbows which tend to get more tanned than other parts of the body. 

Alternative Solutions for Removing Fake Tan ASAP

Before you decide whether or not to use a magic eraser to remove fake tan, I think you should know about some alternative solutions for fast spray tan removal. 

Here are the best ways to get a fake tan off ASAP.

  • Baking soda – Combine two tablespoons of baking soda with water or coconut oil to create a paste. Then, rub over your skin, leave for a few minutes, and wash off;
  • Toothpaste – Another alternative way to remove fake tan is to apply some toothpaste on an old toothbrush and leave for around 30 minutes to erase your spray tan patches;
  • Oil – Believe it or not, you can remove your fake tan with coconut oil, baby oil, and even olive oil. Just leave it on your skin for around 30 minutes to absorb fully, then gently exfoliate;
  • Lemon juice – Here’s another great natural bleach for removing spray tan but make sure you patch test before you use it on the entire body. 
  • Steam room – Half an hour in a steam room can do wonders for you, especially if you want to get rid of your patchy tan. When you’re done, rub your skin gently to loosen the tan and gently exfoliate the skin;
  • Vinegar – Since vinegar is slightly acidic, it can help you fade patches of fake tan. Apply a bit of vinegar on a cotton pad, then apply on the desired area, and leave for a few minutes;
  • Swimming pool – If you want your fake tan to fade as soon as possible, go for a swim. Swimming pools are sanitized using chlorine-based compounds which have bleaching effects and can help you get rid of your patchy tan faster;
  • Specialized products for spray tan removal – You can always buy a specialized product to get rid of your fake tan if you want to go for the safest option.

Final Thoughts

A magic eraser can be an effective and safe spray tan removal if you use it properly. 

Even though the intended purpose of this product is to scrub dirty surfaces and remove stains, it can certainly be useful for a quick fake tan removal.

Since it contains chemicals and materials that are not intended for skin usage, a magic eraser can cause some damage to the skin especially if you don’t use it gently or you have a sensitive skin type.

Make sure you consider all your options, educate yourself, and choose wisely. I hope this article helped you get a better idea of what a magic eraser really is, how it works, and what are the possible implications of using it for spray tan removal.

At the end of the day, it all boils down to this: your skin, your choice

Was this story helpful? Why not share?