Goodbye patchy knees and streaky arms!
Which fake tan tips actually work? How do you avoid those streaks and patches? And what can we do if we have a Ross Gellar style disaster and need to get it all of asap?
When it comes to getting a glow from the bottle, it’s not always an easy feet. Buying the best fake tan
just isn’t enough – you need to prepare your skin, use the right tools and consider what you’re going to wear afterwards.
Needless to say, getting started can feel like a job in itself which is why we’ve put together the best fake tan tips to ensure that you’ve got a gorgeous natural glow without a streaky shin in sight.
Want more glow? Take Powder’s nifty quiz to find your perfect highlighter.
And if you’ve avoiding hitting the bottle thus far because you’re worried about which shades to choose, we’ve got tanning pro James Harknett on board to help us out.
‘Gradual build up tans are a great way to start as they contain far less tanning agent than a mousse or lotion. A red-based tan is ideal for fair skin tones who don’t tan well and, if your skin freckles in the sun, a red base will complement you,’ he advises.
‘Olive skin tones and those who tan well on holiday should choose a green base. Brunettes with dark features will benefits from an olive base colour.’
So now you know how dark to go, get ready to become a pro at faking it fabulously.
Fake Tan Tip 1: Exfoliate
It may sound obvious but trying to regularly keep your skin in good condition will help your cause when it comes to hitting the fake tan bottle. If you really want to avoid a patchy fake tan, you need to gently scrub skin before beforehand to lift all the dead skin cells and reveal revitalised, ready-to-tan skin beneath.
Tanning pro James Harknett says: ‘Wrists, ankles, elbows and knees are prime areas prone to colour grabbing and will easily turn too dark so you should always apply less tan to these areas. And make sure you exfoliate them first to keep the colour even.’
Once you’re over your tan, you can also exfoliate to get your natural skin tone back.
Fake Tan Tip 2: Moisturise
Be sure to slather your body top-to-toe in moisturiser before you fake it, but do remember to let it fully sink in before you begin applying your self tan. Be sure to pay particular attention to wrists, elbows, ankles, knees and feet as these areas can get dry and need extra moisture.
Moisturise every day when you step out the shower because patchy, dry skin just wont respond well to a faux glow and it’ll make it easier when you come to the bottle bronzing.
Fake Tan Tip 3: Use latex gloves
Orange-tinted palms and grubby-looking fingernails are the tell-tale sign that you’ve been cheating that golden glow. The best way to avoid it is to get into the habit of applying fake tan wearing latex gloves. Yes, it may feel a little strange at first, but after a few applications it will become second nature.
Once you’re covered all over, take the gloves off and use cotton wool pads to apply a small amount of tan to the back of each hand. As much as orange hands are a no-no, so are bright white
Fake Tan Tip 4: Invest in a back brush
Unless you have a dedicated other half to ensure your back is bronzed, tanning your back solo seems like an impossible mission. Investing in a back spatula or roller will help you to reach those nooks and crannies that are easily missed and difficult to reach, meaning a much more even and realistic tan.
Fake Tan Tip 5: Dab Vaseline on eyebrows and hair line
The last thing you want to do when fake tanning your face is end up with an uneven colour and a horrible tide mark by your hairline and eyebrows. Dotting a small amount of Vaseline along your brows and next to your hair line will help you tan the face with caution, as dabbing the jelly means that any slip of the hand when applying will prevent dodgy marks appearing in these areas.
James Harknett says: ‘Many ‘tans in cans’ contain alcohol to help the spray dry faster on the skin so moisturise your face thoroughly first to prevent it dehydrating. Be careful not to hold the can too close; around 20cm from the face is sufficient, and spray downwards.
‘If you find self-tan sits in your pores, place a cold damp flannel over the face for a few minutes to help shrink them.’
Fake Tan Tip 6: Buff
When the professionals want to ensure a tan is perfectly applied and avoid any sign of patchiness, they don a buffing mitt and gently dab away at any build up of tan to spread it evenly and avoid varying shades. These are generally cheap to buy and easy to use so get buffing after applying your lotion or spray.
Priced at £3.99, available at New Look
Fake Tan Tip 7: Wear loose, dark clothing afterwards
In an ideal world we would have time to aimlessly wander around post-fake tan, but in reality it’s a quick slap of lotion before we rush out of the door. The number one rule of dressing after tanning is to wear dark, loose clothing to avoid marking any wardrobe favourites. So be sure to throw on a jersey LBD and keep legs bare to optimise your tan potential.
Fake Tan Tip 8: Polish and reapply
Now your tan has developed and you’re happy with the results, the work doesnt stop there! Stay glowing for longer by maintaining a strict routine of gentle exfoliation and lots more moisturising. And if you can feel the flawless fake tan starting to fade, then simply top up.
So there you have it – you’ll be a glow pro in no time.