There seems to be no reassurance that "the sun will come out tomorrow" ...so sorry Annie but I won't be 'betting my bottom dollar, there'll be sun'...the sun is quite obviously refusing to put his hat on for any continuous length of time! Not to worry though, for a 'top tan' we don't necessarily need any special 'sunny rays', what we may need are special 'sprays' or spray tans to be precise! I must say at this point I have only had a 'spray tan' once in my life and it's not for lack of wanting. As someone who is a regular 'home self tanner,' I find myself hard pushed to pay the same amount for a spray tan that lasts a few days as I do my bottle of tan that lasts me the month, if not more. Most of the time i'd rather save a few pennies on luxuries like this and put them in the 'new shoe pot' or suchlike! I do refer to spray tans as a luxury though, simply for the fact of the convenience and the fact that 'most of the time' you're safe in the knowledge you won't be having any of the usual 'home tanning' traumas, oranges palms, streaky legs etc. That's all on the plus side, on the down side is getting into your 'birthday suit' in front of a complete stranger, wearing only a paper shower cap and a disposable paper thong to protect your modesty....I have to say on my visit at this point I was way past my 'modesty comfort zone!' Cringe! So... there is why I tend to stick to home tanning. I should say in the sake of fairness though, I did love the colour result after my 'one time' spray tan and wouldn't rule it out again in the future (I might just have to psych myself up for it first, ha!). Back to home tanning...
We're all aware of how confusing the tanning 'product jungle' can be! We've got sprays, lotions, creams, gels, cream-gels, oils, mousses, creams, milks ...self tans, gradual tans and instant tans! Where to start??? I thought it best to start by giving you an idea of some of my favourite products (I'm a big fan of a tan) and also some of the products i've been testing recently. Boots.com seem to have some great summer savings on tanning products at the moment so i've included a link for each product and we can all get saving some more 'Advantage Card Points!' I just love watching the points tick up knowing that I can treat myself or save up the points for gifts, definitely by far our favourite 'points scheme.'
St Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Mousse: This product has been around a while and is one of my favourites. It has an instant guide colour that many self tans have, this basically means you can see colour going onto your skin. After the allocated tanning time you then rinse off the guide colour in the shower to reveal your tan (the guide colour often being slightly darker than when it is rinsed off). Always use a tanning mitt (Boots.com link here) with this product and glide it onto the skin in smooth strokes, being careful around areas like feet, elbows and hands. I tend to use a damp cotton wool pad to gently buff my elbows and the edges of my hands and feet after application to try and avoid any unsightly lines. Personally I tend to apply this product in the evening and let it develop overnight (wearing a long sleeve tshirt and trousers to sleep in to protect bedding!). St Tropez definitely tends to give me a strong base tan that I can top up every now and then with some of the products below. St Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Mousse is currently available with a 1/3 off it's usual RRP at Boots.com click here for link or photo.
Dove Derma Spa Summer Revived Medium to Dark Body Lotion: This seems naturally the next product I would mention as this is, as mentioned above, the product I would
top up with in between St Tropez applications, especially during summer months. It's like a body moisturiser with a 'hint of tint.' We always recommend the medium to dark to friends, no matter your skin tone as this is a very subtle gradual tan. We love this product as it is gently moisturising as well as giving a subtle but noticeable hint of colour. This product however has no 'guide colour', so be a bit more careful making sure you get the correct coverage to avoid streaking. It is best applied just like a body moisturiser (be fairly generous to avoid streaking) but again be careful around the feet, hand and elbow area. I use a damp cotton pad again over my elbows and around feet after application. As you use your bare hands (rather than a mitt) to apply, I would definitely recommend giving your hands a good wash after to avoid 'tinted palms.' After washing apply a very small amount of product to the back of your hands and rub the back of your hands together. I then use my fingertips to blend around my fingers and into wrist area, using the cotton pad to clean ends of fingers and gently buff between fingers to get a even tan all the way to the finger tips! Dove Derma Spa Sumer Revived is available at Boots.com and is currently 1/2 price, click here or photo for link.
We're always testing out new tanning products, especially over these summer months and will keep you updated on here if we find any new favourites. To keep you fully up to date though I have also been using St Tropez Self Tan Dry Luxury Oil every so often. Applied with a mitt, it gives a fab bit of colour but also leaves a hint of gentle sparkling shimmer on the skin when first applied. This finish is fab if you're braving getting your legs out on show! (available at Boots.com with a 1/3 off its usual RRP, click here for link)
I also have to mention, 'Vita Liberata' it's a brand I first tried last year, but as a new brand their product range has changed a bit over the year and I have to say it seems to be causing quite a stir! I've heard so many people talking about it and loving the results. The Vita Liberata pHenomenal 2-3 Week Self Tan Lotion is a product that could definitely be finding a permanent home in my bathroom cabinet! A beautiful rich consistency, it gives a great depth of colour for those looking for something a little richer and does tend to be slightly less drying than some other products. (available at Boots.com currently with a 1/3 off its usual RRP, click here for link).
Top tips for a great 'fake' tan is prep and aftercare. Whichever product you use, make sure you prep the skin first and if using post shower or showering off a guide tan, make sure you 'pat' your skin dry after a shower rather than rubbing dry. Rubbing will aggravate the top layer of your skin, making your tan uneven. The second top tip would be to stay moisturised, fake tan products in general can be fairly drying for the skin so keep up a regular moisturising routine.
For those of you who want to bare your legs and are shy of a fake tan or those of you in search of more perfect looking pins... we also recommend Sally Hanson Airbrush Legs Tan Glow. It's a sort of 'body make up' that gives the illusion of wearing tights. Great for covering up any uneven skin tone, small veins and enhancing your skin tone to give the illusion of 'post holiday legs.' Simply applied by shaking the can and applying product to hands before distributing over legs, you can also use a mitt to distibute if needs be but we find straight from the hands works just as well. Wait to dry for about 60 seconds before dressing, wash hands and voila...legs ready to show the world! This products then easily washes off in the shower. It's a great quick fix and very common to see backstage in model 'kit bags!'
If you have any questions you'd like to ask us, please feel free to contact us at this link to our Facebook page facebook.com/styleforeverybody
For those of you getting your bags packed and ready for a real tan we'll be doing a 'holiday post' soon with some of our holiday must haves, so will be back soon with more! In the meantime have a fabulous week! X