Sim­ple steps to a STREAK-FREE SUM­MER TAN

The Irish Mail on Sunday - TV Week - - BODY & SOUL -

Sum­mer is com­ing (we hope) and the best ac­ces­sory you can have on hol­i­day, at a wed­ding or for any spe­cial oc­ca­sion is a tan. A glow makes us feel healthy and more in tune with the sea­son and its brighter fash­ions, but th­ese days most of us pre­fer to fake it. Selftan­ning gives great colour but it can be tricky, so here are a few tips to get it right first time.

Ex­fo­li­ate to rid your skin of oils and dead skin cells that might block tan de­vel­op­ment. Shave be­fore tanning rather than af­ter: this gives a more even tan on the lower legs. Moisturised skin colours bet­ter but ap­ply moisturiser in the days up to tanning and skip it on the day it­self.

Choose your tan wisely. Look for ad­di­tional mois­turis­ers and an­tiox­i­dants that will pam­per the skin while tanning. Karora Self Tan Mist (€14.99), Rockstar Ac­cess All Ar­eas (€24.95) and Tan Or­ganic Self Tan Oil (€24.99) all con­tain ex­tra skin ben­e­fits. Depth of colour is im­por­tant, too. Some tans darken the skin only a lit­tle, while oth­ers are quite deep. Two of the best are St Tropez Self Tan Bronz­ing Lo­tion (€ 30.45) and Xen-Tan Moroc­can Tan (€ 29). Scent is im­por­tant — and you re­ally want to avoid that bis­cuit aroma! Nat­u­ral/or­ganic tans gen­er­ally don’t de­velop this smell, while oth­ers have a tech­nol­ogy that neu­tralises the niff. All five tans just men­tioned have this box ticked.

It’s easy to avoid streaky an­kles and knuck­les. Be­fore tanning, lightly ap­ply moisturiser to hands and feet. Use a mitt to tan the body first and then, with the rem­nants from the glove, lightly sweep over hands, fin­gers and feet.

Your face may need a sep­a­rate tan if your other tan­ner is body-only. If you have open or en­larged pores, hold a cold, damp wash­cloth over the pores to shrink them tem­po­rar­ily and then quickly ap­ply the lo­tion; Vita Lib­er­ata’s Rich Self Tan Face Gel (€ 25) gives a lovely nat­u­ral tan to the face. (This trick also works on the lower legs, where body tan can set­tle into hair fol­li­cles cre­at­ing ‘tan spots’. Try it!)

To keep your golden glow go­ing a few ex­tra days, use a colour-boost­ing prod­uct. He-Shi’s Day To Day Grad­ual Tan (€17.75) adds a sub­tle top-up of colour — per­fect for ex­tend­ing your tan for a long week­end or a week in the sun.

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