Friday, 27 June 2014

Mastering fake tan…it’s easier than you think

Yay, summer is here and the sun is shining. That means the hem lines are going north and the legs are coming out.

If that is filling you with dread though, then perhaps it is time to give your pasty limbs some love and pop open the fake tan! But if that is filling you with dread, then perhaps it’s time to learn how to fake tan.

I’m not a beautician but am a beauty junkie and I like to think I do learn from my mistakes so consider myself as having finally learnt how to fake tan! I spent three years at uni resembling a cross between the caste of Towie and an oompa loompa and I feel those days are loooong behind me. I like to think I now have a more natural tan colour, complementing my dark features and giving off an air that I’ve spent time away in the sun, minus the strap marks.

love a bit of fake tan!

So here are my top tips for fake tanning at home.. these tips can be used for the instant fake tan but also for your developer tans.

One – the right lighting
This is going to sound so obvious but make sure you are in a well lit room! I once fake tanned before bed, in my bedroom with the lights down low with just a side lamp for luminosity. Whilst I went to bed thinking I’d applied an even coat of goldenness, I woke up to discover it had actually developed into a patchy mess and didn’t look so even in the natural light, which revealed all my missed spots!

Two – avoid water
Getting another obvious tip out the way, give yourself enough drying time and avoid doing anything that involves water.

I made this mistake a few weeks back - after fake tanning, I did what any good housemate does and cleaned the bathroom but the water ran down my arms, taking off tiny little alleys of fake tan. By the morning it looked as if I had drawn some rivers onto my fake tanned arm and there was no way to cover this up!

make sure you use a mitt

Three – exfoliate
Exfoliator is your BFF when it comes to tanning. Fake tan is sucked up by dry skin like me sucking up a pimms on a hot day, so not exfoliating will result in your fake tan looking patchy as it clings to your dry patches of skin. Go for a salt or sugar based scrub, something that is grainy to buff your skin. Knees, ankles and elbows are particularly bad for being dry areas of skin.

Four - moisturise
After exfoliating, apply a hydrating moisturiser to continue with the ethos that dry skin is bad skin. Don’t use an oil though as this will leave a greasy film, resulting in the fake tan ‘sliding’ off and not giving you an even natural looking glow.

Five – circular motion
When applying your fake tan it is essential that you use a mitt and wipe it on in circular motions, rather than an up and down motion which is more likely to result in streaks.

Six - mind your clothes
This might sound silly, but mind your clothes when fake tanning. I have lost many a pair of knickers in my time to fake tan, where I have been fake tanning my legs and messily got it on my underwear. It does usually stain. And looks a pooey stain! 

Seven - use ice
If you have just shaved your legs (and you should really, fake tan isn't a good look over a prickly forest) then you'll need to close your pores again so that the fake tan doesn't sink into them. 
Use an ice cube to rub over your legs to close pores. 

Eight - tidy up
When fake tanning, although it’s a tricky body part to do, don’t forget your hands and feet. Stopping at your ankles will be a classic tell tale sign that the tan is from a bottle. Make sure you apply a layer to the backs of your hands and feet, but tidy up the cuticles and your palms and heels etc with a wet wipe. Don’t wash your hands to clean your palms.

I hope you find these tips helpful because over the years if there is one thing that I have learnt, it is that David Dickenson and Dale Winton are not inspirations for a great looking tan!

X x X

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