1. Prep work
No matter which fake tan you use, it’s only as good as the canvas you work on. To prep your skin for a perfect tan, hit the shower with an exfoliant or tan removal mit. Avoid oil-based scrubs, because the oil can act as a barrier against the tan adhering to skin. Once you’ve dried off, dab rough areas of skin– elbows, knees, ankles, hands, wrists– with some moisturizer, this will stop the tan from catching and building up on these patches.
2. Shaving time
If you shave your legs, try to do so a day before applying tan. This way your skin won’t be too sensitized and reactive to the tanning formulation; nor will you have to shave on top of a fresh fake tan, which would exfoliate away some of your hard work.
3. Apply the product
Now it’s time to get down to the business of bronzing. Apply the tan to the large areas of the body first: the limbs, stomach and then focus in on the feet, ankles, knees and neck. If you see the tan darken too much in these areas as it develops, simply grab a towel and buff the color down. When you have finished your tan then grab a baby wipe and run it along your wrist, elbows, nails, nail cuticles and ankles.
4. Face facts
Nervous about tanning your face? Don’t be. Facial fake tans normally have softer ingredients, and there are plenty of skincare brands now that make self tanners for the face. Avoid tanning the face if you have pigmentation. I don’t tan my face for this reason, I just apply a two-faced bronzer on the contours of my face and I cho0se a slightly darker foundation than normal.
5. Find your formula
There’s a head-spinning number of tan brands and formulas on offer. Generally, the traditional creams are the most moisturizing option, however they’re usually non-tinted so you need to take extra care to not miss any spots. I will suggest some below.
6. Choose your shade
No matter if you’re using a cream, gel, spray or mousse, you must get your shade right. If you’re fair and want to go dark, do a couple of applications of a light-to-medium shade, rather than buying a dark shade, or you may end up looking a bit fake. It is always best to carry out a patch-test prior to tanning so you can see the color that your skin will throw.
7. Post Tan
Wear dark loose clothing after your tanning application so you do not get any strap marks left from tight tops. A kaftan is perfect or borrow your BF’s t-shirt and ‘trackies’.
8. A long lasting tan
My favorite product to assist in tans fading naturally is the PURE FIJI coconut lotion. It has very simple and clean ingredients which I like. It moisturizes the skin well and offers a body butter for dry skin in the change of seasons when the skin can become extra dry. My recommendation with any products is just choose a natural and organic lotion, the less preservatives and ingredients you can’t pronounce the better.
9. Missed Any Spots?
Grab some bronzer and a sponge and just dab around the area to fill in the color.
10. Final tanning tip
A big buzz in makeup artist circles is the concept of skin finishing, which is the perfect way to set off your newly minted tan. Here are a few red carpet ready tips post your tan: Run a shimmer cream (no sparkle) along the shins to help elongate the legs. Add a little shimmer around the clavicle bone on the chest for a glowing body that gleams when in front of the cameras.
11. Favorite Products
Bondi Sands Tanning Applicator (so you don’t get tanned hands)
Bondi Sands Tan Mit (to prep your skin for a tanning application)
Bondi Sands Self Tanning Foam
Pure Fiji Body Lotion