I thought i'd share my thoughts on fake tan, aplologies for the tacky title i'm so into a bit of tackiness at the moment! :) (if at any point i sound patronising or stating the obvious in this post i apologise in advance) I am really lucky that my mum lives in Spain, i get quite a few holidays there this results in me have a little bit of a tan most of the year & so don't bother with fake tan often, mainly because i cant be bothered with the hassle!! but when i do make an effort & fake tan i have a tried & tested method that works for me & leaves me with an even lovely colour!
I think the key to good fake tanning is simple, good skin preparation & building the colour up gradually. I start off normally the night/morning before i intend to tan with a good exfoliating session, i use St tropez step one body polisher which is a bright blue paste & use it with scrub gloves & some body wash as it doesn't foam so makes it easier to do. This is harsh exfoliation so not for the faint hearted, but your skin is amazing afterwards so worth it!
Next i moisturise, i use a body butter something really rich if its the night before, or if its the same day as i tan something a little lighter that will absorb completely by the time you tan.
Next i apply the tan, i do my tanning over 3 nights usually to get the required colour, if you want a tan all the time then it will obviously be different but if i fake tan its for an occasion/party. So i start with 2 nights of boots holiday glow medium gradual tanner (i'll do reviews of products later on) Then for a final hit of darkness the night before the occasion i use St tropez step 3 auto bronzant lotion.
The next morning get in the shower & with a body puff thing wash the coating of st tropez off revealing a beautiful tan! :) & moisturise everyday for the upkeep! (something i never do & it doenst seem to affect my tan but if you've got dry skin a must)
Use gloves even with the gradual tanner, its just easier. I got surgical gloves off ebay & they're brill!!
Start with one glove on & tan the opposite arm & hand first, by the time you've finished applying it to the arm the hand will be dry enough to put the other glove on it & then do the rest of yourself & when you're finished remove the glove from the untanned hand & apply the tan to the it!
I dont always but sometimes i mix the st tropez with a little moisturiser when applying to my hands, feet, elbows & ankles so the tan looks more natural.
Have a reasonable picture of how dark you can actually go without looking tangoed, if you're very pale you wont look right really dark & so i would advise sticking to a gradual tan & then you can control the darkness more than an actual fake tan. i've seen pictures on facebook of someone looking like an umpa lumpa & just wanted to tell her, its so easy to get fake tan right & so easy to get it wrong!
Finally invest in a tan remover, use it as insurance in case anything goes wrong, i know st tropez make one thats about £15 for 350ml. There is a method of lemon juice & salt that removes tan but when you're in a panic that your tanning has messed up i think searching the house for lemons & salt is a little more difficult than a convenient bottle of tan remover so may be worth investing a little money in one.
Any prices i quote are from boots as of today so could vary in different shops!
My Staple Tanning stuff
Disposable Vinyl gloves from ebay! (i've put a link below & i dont think it was the one i used but it gives you an idea if you're after some)
Please excuse the size of the st tropez bottels, they're not the regular size, an ex boyfriend bought them from a salon for me so they're the 950ml ones!
St Tropez Step one Body Polish - £15.50 for 250ml
Boots holiday glow in medium - around £4 for 250ml
I think this is a great gradual tanner, it soaks into my skin quickly & gives a lovely even tan & is really moisturising as well. When you apply it the smell isnt too bad but you do smell like biscuits after a while, something i've come across in most gradual tanners, however because i apply it 10 minutes before i go to bed i dont have to live with the smell for long, so i'm willing to put up with it because of the effectiveness of the actual product!
St Tropez Step three auto bronzant lotion - £18.50 for 120ml or £28.00 for 240ml
I had a look this morning & found a 950ml bottle on ebay for around £70, so if you're a hardcore user it may be worth looking into as its cheaper in the long run than the other options, just be careful that its the real stuff off ebay!
I really think this fake tan is worth the money, i did buy it before i got my massive bottle & tried the mousse one as well, i do prefer the lotion because it goes on so smoothly, you can see exactly where you're applying it because the lotion is so dark and i have never known it streak on me, in fact i dont think i've ever had a fake tan streak on me. It gives me the most natural tan i have come across with or without the Boots gradual tan as a base.
A Couple of other tanning products i have
Johnsons Holiday skin - £4.88 for 250ml
So i think everybody's tried this stuff out, as it was probably the market leader at one point but i think its probably not anymore, it stank!! the new odor free version still makes you smell like biscuits & so is no longer my choice of gradual tanners, its more expensive than others & doenst do anything particularly brilliant for me, it does what it says on the bottle but nothing more unlike the boots one, which is cheaper & leaves my skin like silk the next morning as well as a tan. this leaves me with a tan but not any more moisturised than before i applied it.
Garnier summerbody gradual tan - £3 for 250ml (on offer at boots at that price normally around £6)
I really liked this gradual tanner, it smells really nice when you apply (the main reason i bought it) does leave u with a biscuity aroma after a while but its not too bad & leaves you with a really nice looking tan & i would buy it again when its on offer like it is now, if its full price i'd just get the boots one as it does the same job for less money.
Nuress Tanning solution - £22.99 for 500ml
This stuff i half inched from my mums house!! its meant for a spray tan gun that was available from argos a while ago, i did attempt the gun with it but it was way too much hassle. instead i got a pair of gloves on & applied it directly, its a liquid so can be a bit messy & is scary as you look like its stained your skin mahogany brown but when you have a shower the next day you're left with a lovely colour, it is darker than other tanners using this application instead of the gun but if you need a quick short notice tan this is the one i reach for & do it the night before or the morning before if i'm not leaving the house & it lasts a while as well.
So there you have it, i've tried so many brands other than these, i'll give u a quick opinion on a few:
Fakebake i found was awful for me i actually couldnt stand it, i thought it made me look like a glitter ball as it has a glittery finish to it which i find pointless as you wash it off the next morning.
Sun laboratories (i'm such a qvc sucker) was awful it dripped like mad & left splotches (is that a word?! it is now) on my skin so i wasnt impressed!
Xen-Tan Wasnt too bad! i would have repurchased it if i hadnt have gotten the giant bottles of St Tropez to get a better test of it, as i only had a couple of applications of it.
If you made it this far well done! & if you've got any questions/recommendations for me just comment or twitter me i love to hear what everyone uses.
Hope you're having a fantastic day & i'll Cya Later
Monday, 4 May 2009