Well summer has officially left the building! Leaving us all missing salty beach hair & craving the sweet smell of coconut infused sun cream. Especially for those of us who are slightly challenged in the melatonin department, pale wintery skin can mortifying.
This week especially my foundation seems a bit on the dark side and not wanting to reach for a paler shade just yet, I’m reaching for the self-tan instead.
Luckily self-tans have come a long way since I first experimented with my mums ‘instant tan’ back in the 90’s at the age of 14! (ekk). This particular liquid tan was applied with a cotton pad and streaked on in stripy orange lines form ankle to hip, the you connect the stripes like a human painting by numbers if you will. Back then my pale English skin was about 5 shades lighter than It is now, so as you can imagine – I did not achieve the beautiful ‘natural’ tan I was promised on the bottle!
Fast forward 15 years and the tanning choices are endless, with formulations more advanced and the ingredients more natural than ever.
I have recently been using the Naked Tan Range, as a professional makeup artist I am always on the look out for instant tans that I can use on photo shoots, as well as on myself. I want a product that goes on quickly & evenly. It must produce a natural looking golden tan with a beautiful sheen. The Goddess Instant Tan does just that, not only does it smell divine (coconut & lime – yum!) it melts into the skin without having to work it in, I have been using my hands but an applicator mitt is always an excellent way to apply (and less messy)
However if your looking for a more long lasting tan then you will need to use a gradual tan (like a body moisturizer with a hit of tan) or self tanning cream.
My top tips for applying a flawless tan:
1 – Polish – exfoliating your skin is essential for an even tan, especially coming into winter where your skin is more dehydrated. I like to use exfoliating mittens in the shower. Try the ‘RIFFI ORIGINAL EXFOLIATING MITT – it feels quit enough at first but your skin will feel amazing after! You can double this up with an exfoliating cream scrub as well – you want to make sure it’s quite coarse so really buss off dead skin – and if you can get someone to scrub your back even better! Avoid scrubs that have oil based – I love these scrubs for a weekly treat, but they can cause a streaky tan due to the residue that they leave on the skin.
2 – Moisturize – all over! Personally I think you achieve a more even tan especially if you are super fair. Paying particular attention your hands & wrists, knees, feet & ankles, and anywhere that is dry. Feel free just to moisturize those specific areas if you’re more confident with your tanning game or if you want a darker tan.
Avoid anything that is over perfumed! A lightweight lotion is the best option, Leave to absorb completely. Try the Naked Tan Goddess Crème de le crème – super hydrating and absorbs instantly.
If your tanning your face then apply a tiny amount of moisturize to the eyebrows and around the hairline – this will act as a barrier to prevent a tan build up or heaven forbid – orange brows! Ekk!
3 – Shade – Choose a self tan that is the right shade, not all self-tans come in different shades, so do a patch test first. Self tans are supposed to enhance your skin, not mask them so always air on the side of caution, if your super pale – don’t go for a dark colour, choose a medium tone shade and then you can always build up with a gradual tanner over the following days. Most ranges now come in various formulations, creams, mousses and sprays; it really is down to personal preference. Generally you have more control with a mousse or cream; sprays can get messy (especially in a white bathroom – opps!) but they can be handy if you have to your back and backs of legs.
I like to use a blending mitt, you can cover larger areas, they help to smooth on the product; gliding over the trickier parts like ankles and knees.
4 – Now you wait! But not for to long – The clever people over at Naked Tan have developed a 2 hour tan – goodbye going to bed smelting like a burnt chip and hello to instant golden goddess! They also smell incredible; enriched with Shea Butter, Aloe Vera and Avocado Oil – delish!
5 – Maintain – Now you no longer look like an extra from frozen, you need to prolong your tan, I recommend using a moisturizer daily to prevent the tan fading in patches. You can also top up as I mentioned earlier with a gradual or instant tanner.
Good luck, go forth and bronze!
Photography // Walter Maurice
Model // Chanel Stewart @ Jaz Daly
Hair, Makeup & Nails // Nicola Johnson xx