To tan or not to tan: that is the question. Of course, you want to look flawless on the day of your boudoir shoot. Is tanning something you should consider?
Whatever you do, do not tan the day before your session! If you want to tan, I suggest spray tan for the sake of avoiding skin cancer. Tanning a week before your scheduled shoot is highly suggested. This way your tan will look natural and will not end up staining your clothing and whatever you are posing on. Similarly, I suggest doing a trial run of the spray tan if you can afford it. No one wants to look orange so doing a practice tan might be best to make sure you're achieving the ideal shade for you.
When spray tanning, make sure you heavily moisturize beforehand to avoid getting orange patches around your drier areas, such as elbows, knees, and armpits. Modern digital cameras will definitely pick up the orange, even if it looks bronze to you. Due to streaking of self-tanners, it can make post production for the photographer difficult. If you only want to go a few shades darker, going to a professional salon to get spray tanned or airbrushed might be your best bet.
Please do not opt for tanning in the sun. Doing this leads to unwanted tan lines and dry skin that makes you look older than it really is.The desired effect is a healthy glow. Know that your skin needs at least five days to recover from UV exposure and tan responsibly.