The Best Tanning Products This Summer
We have Coco Chanel to thank (for many things, of course) but also for making a suntan chic.
Up until the 1920’s, a tan was deemed only for those that worked outside on the land. It was the aristocratic porcelain skin of a perceived life of leisure indoors, which was favoured.
Fast-forward and we all know that SPF is a must for all of us – no matter the season, to protect our skins from premature ageing caused by the harmful rays of the sun. BUT we still crave the “just got back from the Cote d’Azure” glow, even though many of us will have to settle for Brighton beach this year!
Luckily, there are plenty of solutions available for at home tanning for all skin types, which means we can look bronzed all year round.
But how can we get the best results? And with so much choice, what products are worth investing in?
Choose your weapon
Gradual tanner – apply daily to build up a glow, usually in a body moisturiser – best for beginners and those who are short on time and those who like a subtle colour.
Fake tans – apply once and leave to develop for 4-8 hours before showering off – better for more experienced tanners and those who prefer a deeper colour
Instant tans/tinted lotions/ – great for last-minute events and invitations and anyone who isn’t sure if fake tanning is for them!
Prepare to bronze
As with most things, fail to prepare, prepare to fail … Prepping the skin ahead of any kind of fake tan application at home is KEY!
I asked Amanda Harrington, tanner to the stars and founder of her eponymous range of sunless tanning products, how to get the most from our self tanners…
“When your skin is perfectly hydrated, your tan will look more radiant, last longer and fade better. Prolong your sunless tan with an oil and fragrance-free moisturiser, morning and night, and apply a low level DHA – such as gradual tan – every couple of days to keep up an even and luminous glow to the skin.”
Whatever method you are using, before you tan, remove body hair and exfoliate the skin thoroughly with a good body scrub or mitt – paying particular attention to problem areas like knees, ankles, elbows and wrists where the product can stick and streak.
Give these areas a good application of moisturiser before applying any tanning product.
For the gradual tan lotions in body lotions – you can just go right ahead and apply the body cream, making sure that you rub it in well and evenly to avoid any streaks.
For instant tans and tinted lotions, the same applies but make sure you wash your hands afterwards paying attention to wrists and the inside of fingers and let it thoroughly dry before getting dressed.
Finding your tan
For the fake tan mousses and lotions which provide a longer-term solution, start with a light application and build up.
Amanda Harrington has formulated her range to enhance your natural skin tone and mimic the colour you naturally go in the sun; this allows for a realistic bronzed glow that looks completely your own.
Amanda developed her Illuminating Bronzing Mist which is Infused with anti-ageing Collagen to promote skin elasticity and CQ10 to firm, lift and give antioxidant protection. When applied with a brush and buffed into the skin, get ready for a glow most A listers would kill for!
Jules von Hep, founder of Isle of Paradise self tan range recommends 2 coats of fake tan on the body and 1 on the face with bronzing mousses, as the face fades quicker than the body – so you look “even not orange”.
Wise words indeed!
Tan drops are all the rage at the moment as you can customise your tan by dropping a couple of drops into your body cream or face moisturiser to achieve a golden glow. Results should start after 2-3 days of regular daily use.
We love these drops from Isle of Paradise.
Get your mitts on a self tan mousse – quick results overnight.
You can’t go wrong with the traditional and original St Tropez
Easy to apply body lotion with self tan? Yes please!
Results should show in 4-5 days of regular use with Dove Derma Spa Summer Revived Lotion
Last minute body saviours for a quick fix
A super clever cream from leg experts Legology.
It contains a hint of pearl to give a lingerie sheer colour to even skin tone for last-minute “legs out” moments.
This one from Rimmel is really good value and gives a great glow to limbs
and last but not least…..
Amanda Harrington illuminating bronzing mist – I love clever multitasking products and this is great in summer but works as a wonderful highlighter all year round!
Do please remember that self-tans will not protect you from the sun, so an SPF is a daily essential!
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