All you need to know about your fake tan
Anyone who has ever tried self-tan will know that achieving that highly coveted California glow is trickier than you might think; from streaky elbows to patchy hands, there’s a myriad of troubles you can run into. Of course, not every bride needs or wants a prewedding treatment – but if you are aiming for a faux glow, these tips and tricks will ensure you avoid tan-guish in the lead up to your big day.
<RXU ZHGGLQJ PD\ EH WKH ÀUVW WLPH you’ve decided to treat yourself to a spray tan, so to avoid an orange-hued mishap like Ross from Friends, there are a few things you need to know.
“Conduct a trial with your spray tanner ahead of your wedding, just like you would with your hair and make-up artist,” says Jayne Cooper, tanning expert with St. Tropez. “Build a relationship so you both understand the colour you want to be.”
We advise booking your tan test a few days before your make-up trial, so you can make sure your skin tone and make-up choices work well together. Book your big-day spray tan 48 hours before the wedding day. “This will guarantee that the tan has developed, set and calmed in time,” says Jayne.
In preparation for your spray tan, exfoliation is key. “Exfoliate your skin, paying special attention to your hands, elbows, knees and feet,” continues Jayne. To get rid of dry skin, which can cause a patchy, uneven colour, we’re big fans of Fake Bake Coconut Body Polish, £10.
In addition, moisturising your skin on the morning of your spray tan is a no-no. “Moisturiser acts as a barrier to the tan formula,” explains Jayne. “So your colour won’t be as rich.” That said, applying a light moisturiser to elbows, hands and ankles prevents tan from becoming patchy in those drier areas.
When it comes to the tan shade, think about your dress. “It’s about choosing a natural-looking tan,” says Jayne. “If you’re in white, cream or ivory, you’ll look darker due to the contrast.”
Remember to bring something loose and dark to wear following your spray tan appointment to help minimise streaking and colour transference on the journey home. “Ditch the bra – especially if you’re going to be wearing a backless dress on your wedding day,” recommends celebrity tanner James Harknett. “Avoid exercise after your spray tan, and don’t use a steam room or sauna. Also, take your showers cooler than your usual temperature and don’t go for a soak in the bath.
“If it’s hot day when you have your appointment, your tanner should offer to sprinkle a little talcum powder in the areas of the body where your skin rubs together, such as your inner elbows and under-arms,” he continues. “The talc will help to stop sweat from mottling the colour of your tan.”
Your spray tan should last between ÀYH DQG VHYHQ GD\V ,I \RX ZDQW WR maximise its longevity for up to three extra days, then reach for St. Tropez’s Tan Enhancing Moisturiser, £10. It’s formulated to work with self-tanned skin to lock in moisture and ensure an even fade to avoid break-up.