Almost everyone looks better with a tan; it makes us look thinner, more toned and imparts a healthy glow. However, we all know how dangerous and damaging for our skin the sun can be. Getting sunburnt just five times can double your chances of getting skin cancer, especially if one of those times is a blistering sunburn in childhood or adolescence. Therefore, getting good at applying the fake stuff is definitely a worthwhile beauty skill.
Exfoliate, exfoliate, exfoliate
That uneven, patchy look at a fake tan gets after a few days is all down to how much you exfoliated before applying the tan. It’s important to really give your skin a good scrub the day before you plan to tan and apply a good but light moisturiser the night before. Then scrub again before you apply the tan. This way, you ensure that the skin is not dry or flaky and will absorb the tan properly.
Use a proper fake tan, not a gradual tan
It’s not that these tans aren’t good, but rather than limiting the damage you do, they actually increase it. I mean, who applies moisturiser in the same way, with the same amounts, everyday? It’s much better to create a base using a decent fake tan first and then top it up using a gradual build moisturiser, such as Palmer’s Coco Butter with Tan (below). This one has a nice, not-too-dark-not-too-light colour that works on most skin colours and doesn’t have that horrible biscuit smell.
Don’t forget your face
A huge mistake some people when applying fake tan is to neglect their face, thinking that it needs it’s own fake tan or it doesn’t need any at all. If anything is going to make your tan look fake, a pale face will most definitely get people suspicious. As you rub the remnants of the tan into the backs of your hands, also use some to highlight your cheekbones, nose, forehead and chin; all the places that would naturally catch the sun in summer. If you have especially problematic or sensitive skin, buy a fake tan for sensitive skin and apply that all over too. Otherwise, you run the risk of a mismatch of colours.
It’s also important to remember to always apply using a tanning mitt and not go more than two shades darker than your natural skin tone, or you’ll run the risk of looking like a few of the girls off a popular British TV series about Essex. Happy tanning!