How to Fake Tan

April 29, 2009

Hair & Beauty

How to Fake Tan

At we’re not big on getting a tan the old fashioned way (baking on the beach or sun bed) instead we prefer to go golden in the privacy of our homes.

If you’re feeling pasty, need to add a sunless glow to your limbs and confused by the options out there – then read on for our favourite options.

Fake tan preparation

Three words: exfoliate, exfoliate and exfoliate.  Get in the shower, shave and scrub with some bath gloves and body polish. There is nothing worse than seeing fake tan build up on unpolished skin.

Types of fake tan

Spray tan

If  you don’t mind parting with some cash and fear applying self tan to yourself, then spray tan is for you. Even better is a spray tan mobile visit which comes to your home!

My friend Liz is a huge fan.   She books in advance,  comes home from work the night before a special occasion, showers while the spray tan lady sets up her “tent” in Liz’s living room and voila, 15 minutes later she is bronzed and ready to shine at the event the next day.

The experience is precise and practically scent-free. Keep in mind that spray tanning can crack as it wears off and look funny if you go too dark, so ask for a colour that’s only a step or two deeper than your natural skin tone.

Fake Bake is the best brand we’ve seen for adapting to your skin colour. (€50 for full body from most beauty salons and €35 – €50 for mobile spray tan).

Gels, Sprays, Mousse

If you want a quick solution then you should try spray, gel or mousse products—they dry the fastest! One of the most best rated gels is Dior Bronze Self Tanner Natural Glow (€25) which is an easy-to-use gel like cream that goes on smoothly and isn’t too sticky. The overall effect is very good and natural.  The colour achieved is great – applying  one coat is fine for this time of year, two coats for mid summer.

St Tropez Everyday gradual tan Mousse (€22.20) is a fake tan which injected warmth into my pale skin. The natural tone built up gradually over several days.  We love how the mousse evenly distributes colour and the lightweight formula never feels sticky.

Lotions and creams

Choose a tanner with a lotion or cream formula if you would rather handle you tan solo and aren’t an expert at application.

Our personal favourite in the faux tanning world has to be Make Believe Self Tanning Lotion (€35) from Boots.  I used it for the first time for my wedding last year and haven’t looked back since.  It smells nice and with two applications, two days apart from each other, I got the sun kissed look I was after.  My advice would be to apply another coat if you wish – personally I don’t like a shade too much darker than my natural skin tone.

Another foolproof product is Piz Buin Self Tanning Lotion and Colour Dial (€19.60).   The white cream goes on like a lightweight moisturizer. The smell is actually quite nice with a non streaking result. The colour is also very natural, even on fair skin.

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4 Responses to “How to Fake Tan”

  1. Lily Says:

    Guys, A friend suggested me to drink lots of water for skin care beauty does water really affect skin care? If yes then how also How much water should one drink per day?

  2. Alicia Jacobson Says:

    Hey There Whatshewears,
    Thanks you for your post Fake tanning was once not seen as a viable alternative to spending some time in the sun. These days, however, its reputation has changed. As people begin to get increasingly worried about the dangers of skin cancer, fake tan products are flying off the shelves. 
    All the Best


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