There´s no denying, I love a good fake tan. And as much as it´s one of my beauty must-haves during the winter months – it´s just as important during summer (especially living in London, when that constant sunshine is sadly, more of a rarity)…In the recent years, I´ve also become much more regimental with SPF (50 on my face and 30 on my body), and I no longer have the patience to lie still in the sunshine for hours on end. The aim is no longer to be super tanned; so having that bottle of fake tan to either top up an existing glow, or ensuring a nice golden colour throughout the summer months (whatever the weather), is a must.
Needless to say, I have tried and tested so many different ones… I used to swear by good old Lóreal Sublime Bronze, however since starting to use self tanners much more frequently (and subsequently becoming more aware of what I´m actually putting on my skin) – I have discovered so many more natural options out there – many of which are actually doing some good for your skin. Gone are the days of wanting a really dark, slightly orange colour (thank god for that), and I now always opt for more natural-looking self tanners, such as gradual bronzing moisturisers and products which promotes more of a healthy glow, rather than an overly obvious fake bake session.
HOW TO USE
First things first, it´s all about preparation with your fake tan… To start off with, I always dry body brush, which helps removes any dead skin and dry, uneven patches. Then I jump in the shower, and continue with a body scrub or polish.
Once done, I make sure my skin is 100% dry, before I start the application of my self tan (sometimes, I even blend my tan with my regular moisturiser, if I want more of subtle effect). Make sure you apply moderate amount onto knees, elbows, ankles and feet to prevent uneven tan, avoid contact with eyes and any direct contact with fabric as staining can occur (although many fake tans are now instant).
Lavera skincare is one of the better, more natural and organic options out there. I´ve been using their Self-Tanning Lotion on my body, for over a year now. Containing 100% pure and natural plant derived and active ingredients, it´s a great option if you’re looking for that natural, sun kissed look, which is actually doing your skin some good too! It won´t give you that really dark tan (unless you continually layer and top it up every day), but a smooth, and relatively streak free result.
I also love the light formula of the Lavera Self-Tanning Cream for your face, containing organic Macadamia Oil and Sunflower Oil which instantly helps nourish and hydrate your skin, leaving you with an even, light golden tan. They’re both relatively inexpensive too!
The Elemis Total Glow Bronzing Body Lotion is one of my favourites, for a solid all-year round, natural looking result. It´s a gradual tanner, which is ideal if you’re after a more softer look – and not only does it bronze, it´s also a brilliant body lotion which really moisturises and hydrates – making it the ideal multi-tasking beauty must-have. Rich in protective antioxidants of green tea extract, with elderberry seed and Abyssinian essential oils to help condition the skin, and red algae to ensure long-lasting firmness and hydration. Oh, and with floral notes and lemon, there´s no distinctive aroma of a self-tan (winning).
I´m equally as obsessed Total Glow Bronzing Moisturizer for the face, which also acts as an excellent moisturiser, whilst enhancing that bronze complexion. Naturally derived from wheat, it subtly builds an even, natural looking tan. Enriched with nourishing Rice Bran Oil, Green Tea for the anti-oxidants, Ginger which helps with the even skin tone, and Evodia Fruit Extract to improve luminosity – this is a great beauty staple, suitable for any type of skin type/colour. They´re a bit more pricey, but worth every penny, in my opinion.
The NKD SKN Gradual Glow Daily Tan Moisturiser, is another multi-tasking product, which acts as a daily moisturiser giving you that hint of tan. With organic skincare extracts such as Aloe Vera (softens and fights ageing), Shea Butter (healing and conditioning) and Lychee (revitalises skin with Vitamin C) – as well as no odour and zero transfer onto clothes (YAY) – your skin is left super soft, smooth and naturally sun kissed. The tan also fades very subtly, leaving you with little or no patches, it´s suitable to all skin types, and very affordable.
I´m a big fan of natural skincare brand Elemental Herbology, so I was VERY excited to get hold of their Sun Kiss Daily Body Hydrator. And it did not dissapoint. Containing subtle levels of eco-certified botanical self-tanning agents, with ultra-nourishing, skin-softening oils – your skin is left intensely hydrated, with a natural and healthy glow. I especially love using this particular one after a holiday, as it really helps prolong the tan. Its light texture allows the skin to breathe, it protects the skin with boosting antioxidants, and cools, calms and nourishes over-exposed skin. It´s a bit pricier than the others, but you’re paying for the pure and natural ingredients (in which case, it´s personally worth the investment).
Skinny Tan is a relatively new brand to the tanning market, with a slightly off-putting name. But it makes sense, I guess; being tanned, does make you look more healthy, and often, that bit slimmer! They have a few different products; I have been trying the Skinny Tan Mousse (which just recently launched in the UK) and the 7-Day Tanner
The Mousse combines natural tanning agents such as Organic Coconut and Aloe Vera, along with Guarana berries, which helps smooth and firm as you tan. The light, fluffy and easy-to-apply mousse, develops into a deeper, yet natural looking colour (you can still layer this product up if the colour isn’t as dark as you want) lasting up to 14 days. If you’ve not used the Skinny Tan range before and you’re nervous about how the colour will develop, try the 7-Day Tanner first; it contains a guide colour to help you see where you have applied the product so that you do not miss any areas (the guide colour is just make up and is darker than the natural colour that will be developing underneath). Enhanced with Sweet Almond Oil and Gurana, it also moisturises while helping to reduce the appearance of blemishes and cellulite (in other words, the perfect pre-holiday beauty must-have).
Who needs those (damaging) rays anyways??