There’s a whole new world of self­tan­ners out there—and they’re noth­ing like any­thing you’ve used be­fore.


These self-tan­ners make for streak-free, glow­ing skin

The ben­e­fits of self-tan­ner have al­ways

been clear: faux glow, and no sun dam­age. It’s the re­sults that haven’t lived up to the prom­ise. Streaks, un­even fades, and or­ange tints have been com­mon draw­backs of us­ing self-tan­ner. Those days are over. We’ve reached a new dawn in the cat­e­gory, which is now led by beauty trends and en­com­passes skin­care ben­e­fits. If you ask celebrity tan­ner James Read, it all started a few years back when he in­tro­duced the first overnight tan­ning sleep mask. Luck­ily, that was just the be­gin­ning.

Read’s lat­est in­no­va­tion fo­cuses on the beauty world’s new fas­ci­na­tion with wa­ter. “Mix­ing wa­ters with cleansers has been a big trend,” says the Lon­don-based tan­ning guru. “I wanted to com­bine co­conut wa­ter with tan, and so I did.” The end re­sult is a beachy, co­conut-scented spray, which Read ap­plied on Rosie Hunt­ing­ton-White­ley from head to toe be­fore this year’s Oscars for a medium-bronze body tan. The for­mula is both ef­fec­tive and hy­drat­ing, and the se­cret to its flaw­less ap­pli­ca­tion is spray­ing down­ward from left to right.

Another one of the big­gest in­no­va­tions in the self-tan cat­e­gory is trans­fer-free prod­ucts like Vita Lib­er­ata’s In­visi Foam­ing Tan­ning Wa­ter, which de­vel­ops in hours and lasts for up to seven days. “One of the things most peo­ple are scared of in tan­ning is that it’s go­ing to come off on their white clothes, white sheets, or wedding dress, and that it’s go­ing to look dirty,” says Ire­land-born founder Alyson Hogg. “This only tans skin,” she says of the

quick-dry­ing for­mula in­fused with hy­drat­ing and anti-ag­ing tech­nol­ogy. It’s just one of the rea­sons celebri­ties like Kim Kar­dashian and Emma Wat­son are big fans of the line.

Wait­ing six to eight hours to wash off prod­uct is no longer nec­es­sar­ily the name of the game ei­ther. St. Tropez’s new pre-shower mousse has quickly be­come the fastest on the mar­ket. “The new tech­nol­ogy re­lies on rapid glow pro­mot­ers that al­low nat­u­ral DHA to pen­e­trate the skin’s sur­face even deeper, faster, and in a more uni­form way to cre­ate a seam­less glow,” says St. Tropez spokesper­son and skin- fin­ish­ing ex­pert So­phie Evans, who reg­u­larly tans celebri­ties like Bella Ha­did and Mar­got Robbie. The patent-pend­ing for­mula gets to work­ing us­ing a 100-per­cent nat­u­ral tan­ning agent and film for­m­ers that cre­ate a semi-wa­ter­proof layer to keep the so­lu­tion on while you shower. Sounds com­pli­cated? Well, it’s not. The whole process takes only a minute.

To­day’s self-tan­ning prod­ucts are also de­signed to work on all skin colours. Lighter skin tones can ex­pect to get a straight-offthe-beach ef­fect that leaves them look­ing healthy and glow­ing, but there are clear ben­e­fits to self-tan­ners for darker tones too. “With medium to dark skin, you’re go­ing to get an even deeper re­sult from a tan, and you’ve al­ready got a lovely base colour to work with,” ex­plains Hogg. “Darker skin gets ashy un­der­tones, and a lovely tan will pull up the beau­ti­ful red tones and liven the skin up, mak­ing it look that much more healthy and alive,” she con­tin­ues.

The key to getting tans just right is as much about the prod­ucts as it is the ap­pli­ca­tion. All of the ex­perts agree that a bit of leg­work be­fore ap­ply­ing self-tan­ner will go a long way. First and fore­most, ex­fo­li­at­ing is es­sen­tial. “Get rid of dead skin so you’ve got a good clean base to work with—that’s num­ber one,” says Hogg. Num­ber two, says Evans, is “mois­tur­ize with a non-oil-based mois­tur­izer af­ter show­er­ing, and be gen­tle with your skin. Pat dry, never rub, and drink plenty of wa­ter.” Fol­low these steps, and “that’s go­ing to give you the ab­so­lute best re­sults,” says Hogg.

It’s time to get glow­ing.

James Read Co­conut Tan­ning Mist, $40, One 2 One Stu­dio

St. Tropez Grad­ual Tan One Minute Pre-Shower Tan­ning Mousse, $28, Shop­pers Drug Mart

Vita Lib­er­ata In­visi Tan­ning Foam Wa­ter, $49, Sephora

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