Fa­cial tan­ning: choose care­fully

Go­ing from lily white to a very dark tan won’t look right

The Irish Times Magazine - - BEAUTY - LAURA KENNEDY

False tan­ning can be a mine­field, but it is al­ways prefer­able to the real thing. The change in our skin’s pig­ment af­ter sun ex­po­sure, even when we find that change aes­thet­i­cally pleas­ing, is the skin’s re­sponse to dam­age, and that is how we should think about it. How­ever, a glance at In­sta­gram pro­vides am­ple ev­i­dence that shades of false tan so deep they veer into a sort of rus­set or­ange in­con­sis­tent with any sort of hu­man skin are still very much in fash­ion. Sadly, there is so­cial cur­rency in re­sem­bling the mighty, no­ble bris­tle of an orang­utan.

Not all tans that work for body will work for the face – some will break the face out, or sim­ply ap­pear un­nat­u­rally dark, or set­tle more on the skin of the face.

You can opt to tan the body alone, but this leaves a sort of “star­tled face in­side a body sock” or “float­ing head” look and re­quires wear­ing make- up so that you don’t look like a lost per­for­mance artist.

There are sev­eral de­liv­ery meth­ods to achieve a nice tan, but I rec­om­mend an overnight mask or a cus­tomis­able tan that you can add to your own moisturiser or oil. In­vest more ( if you can) in tan­ning prod­ucts than other body unguents, to en­sure that is­sues like trans­fer, un­der­tone and de­vel­op­ment time have all been care­fully con­sid­ered.

Of course, there are ex­pen­sive tans which just aren’t good too, so do your re­search care­fully, opt for a shade that your skin would nat­u­rally ex­hibit af­ter some time in the sun and, of course, match face to body.

Don’t go from lily white to a very dark tan; it won’t look right.

1. Char­lotte Til­bury Overnight Bronze and Glow Mask (¤ 48) is a beau­ti­ful uni­sex overnight op­tion that doesn’t dry out the skin or veer or­ange. It is an easy op­tion that is dif­fi­cult to get wrong pro­vided you mas­sage it into the skin evenly and well ( don’t for­get to take it down the neck a lit­tle).

2. James Read Overnight Tan Sleep Mask for Face (¤ 30 at cloud10beauty. com) is a sim­i­lar prod­uct with a gel con­sis­tency which ap­plies re­ally nicely when buffed vig­or­ously into the skin with a fluffy brush. Just be sure to wash your brush af­ter­wards. Ap­ply less at the hair­line, blend­ing care­fully, and don’t for­get your ears.

If you pre­fer a lit­tle more con­trol, try a cus­tomis­able tan that you can add to your own moisturiser.

3. Isle of Par­adise Self Tan­ning Drops for Face and Body (¤ 24.99 at Boots. ie) are ex­cel­lent as you can use them ev­ery­where, and they come in a light shade for a nat­u­ral look­ing golden hue that just blasts the blue off an Ir­ish com­plex­ion. 4. Clar­ins Ra­di­ance Plus Golden Glow Booster for Face (¤ 28 at Deben­hams) is an­other good op­tion, and goes a very long way, but it can be used only on the face.

5. Tan- Luxe The Face Il­lu­mi­nat­ing Self- Tan Drops (¤ 39.25 at beau­ty­bay. com) are sim­i­lar, but pro­vide a re­ally ex­pen­sive- look­ing glowy fin­ish that won’t look like you have faked it.

‘‘ A glance at In­sta­gram pro­vides am­ple ev­i­dence that shades of false tan so deep they veer into a sort of rus­set or­ange in­con­sis­tent with any sort of hu­man skin are still in fash­ion

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