We all know (don’t we?) that there is no such thing as a safe tan and that if you want to have darker skin without the risks involved in lying in the sun, you have to go fake. Most fake tans claim to last for anything from three to 10 days, but how can you make sure yours (especially if you’ve had it professionally – and, no doubt, expensively – done at a salon) lasts as long as possible? Follow these easy precautions, and you should get a long(er) life out of your tan…
It helps to prepare
Don’t just slap on the fake bake and hope for the best. Always prepare the surface before starting (this goes for your make-up, painting your house, preparing a canvas for an artwork). When it comes to self tanning, this means exfoliating and moisturising before applying the self tanner. Exfoliating will slough away the dead skin cells and make your tan go on much more evenly, last longer – and this is quite useful – make the fading process more even and less patchy.
Moisturising before your tan application will make your tan go on more evenly.
Moisturise a lot
Keep moisturising every day with a thick body lotion. Twice a day if you can manage it and you should push that tan to two weeks. And our clever hint is to add a little self tanner to your body lotion and apply that – it will help keep that glow just a little longer. Or use one of those body lotions that build up to a gradual colour, if you can’t be bothered with mixing the stuff yourself.
Exfoliate GENTLY every three days so that your tan fades evenly. And keep up with the moisturising.
Add a little extra shimmer and enhance your tan by brushing a little bronzer over your skin.
Use an SPF if you go into the sun, because, remember, the fake tan does not protect you from those dreaded harmful rays. The other good thing is, the SPF will act as a protective barrier if you go swimming and so help your tan last a little longer – none of that pesky sea water or chlorine getting at it.
And when you get out of the pool or sea, remember to dry yourself gently! Vigorously rubbing yourself down with a towel is a fast track to removing that tan!
And in the shower
Slather yourself in a body oil BEFORE you shower. This is not only great for moisturising your skin, but the oil will act as a barrier between your tan and the water, helping it to last that little bit longer.
Also check the ingredients in your shower gel: parabens, alcohol or AHAs will fade your tan.