Fashion & Beauty

Achieve the perfect tan

Step 1: Say goodbye to dead skin
One of the secrets to an even tan is to remove any dry or flaky skin before application. Applying self tan to dry skin can make the finished result look patchy. So giving your skin a good scrub is a must!

This is also the time to shave, but be gentle. Freshly exfoliated skin is often more sensitive, so tread lightly with your razor to avoid any redness.

Before you get out of the shower, change the shower’s temperature to cold. This will close your pores and prevent those annoying dark spots.

Tanning tip: Get all of your exfoliation and hair removal ticked off your list the day before tanning, to stop your self-tanner from seeping into your pores. However, if you’re really pushed for time, try and wait at least an hour before applying your tan.
Step 2: Smooth it out
The next step to ensuring you get an even base for your self tan is to moisturise. If you’re exfoliating the day before you tan, apply a layer of moisturiser all over your body after showering to stop any dryness creeping back in.

If you’ve left it a little late (we’ve all been there!) and you’re exfoliating the same day as you tan, only apply moisturiser to certain places. Your hands, feet, elbows and knees to be exact. This helps to prevent your self tan from clinging to these areas for a flawless finish.

Tanning tip: For a natural-looking tan, apply a light layer of moisturiser to your wrists, so your golden glow blends in seamlessly with no harsh lines.
Step 3: The main event
When it’s time to tan, make sure you have the right tools, and the best way to self tan is with a mitt.

Pick out your favourite self tanner and apply a small amount to your mitt. Self tanning foams are perfect for beginners. 

Sweep the all tan over your body in long strokes for an even finish. Work in small sections and make sure the tan is all buffed in before you move on to prevent patches and streaks.

Tanning tip: If you’re worried about self tanning your face, try mixing a little of your self tanner with your favourite moisturiser to dilute it slightly for a lighter application.

Step 4: Sit back and relax
The next step might be your favourite - do nothing! If you’re using a developing tan, giving yourself enough time to let the formula do its thing is essential. Immediately after tanning, let it dry completely before putting on some loose, dark clothing to prevent your tan transferring.

Either apply your self tan in the morning for daytime development or apply before you go to bed to wake up looking bronzed and beautiful.

Tanning tip: To minimise time spent waiting for your tan to dry, try using your hairdryer on a cool setting or brushing some loose powder over your skin to really lock in your tan.

Step 5: Reveal your bronze tan
When you’re ready to reveal your freshly tanned skin, pop back in the shower. Use lukewarm water and try to be as quick as possible. As soon as the water runs clear, hop back out and gently pat dry with a towel.

Step 6: Keep your glow going
Now that you’ve achieved the golden goddess glow of your dreams, there are a couple of things you can do to ensure you stay bronzed for longer.

Every few days, lightly exfoliate your skin in the shower to keep it nice and smooth. After exfoliation, pat dry and apply an everyday gradual tanner, to give your tan a little top up.