I'm a weekly fake tanner but I know that some people only wear fake tan when the sun appears in summer. I have tried pretty much every type of tan going at one point or another and wanted to share my thoughts with you today, which I hope may be helpful for anyone who is new to fake tan and is unsure which one will work best or for anyone who wants to try a new type of tan. I know that it might look like this post is sponsored by St Tropez but it honestly isn't. I bought all of these products myself apart from the Ecooking product.
This is a good place to start if you are new to fake tan as the colour will be subtle and will work especially well for those who are fair. It's also a good type of tan to use before going on holiday if you really want to take the white edge off without looking too bronzed. It's also good to use midweek if you want to top up your weekly self tan. This St Tropez Gradual Tan smells like watermelon so there is no chance of smelling like a biscuit! It doesn't have a guide colour but just apply as you would your regular body lotion and you should be good to go. I find that gradual tans only last around 2/3 days and they take a good 8-10 hours to develop. Available from Cult Beauty, Lookfantastic and ASOS.
Self Tan Lotion:
The original form of fake tan and one that I still love. St Tropez Classic Bronzing Lotion is one that I have used on and off for 18 years. It's a tinted lotion so it's easy to see if you've missed any areas and whilst it isn't overly sticky, I personally wouldn't wear regular clothes after applying it. I tend to apply it in the evening and marinate overnight in loose pyjamas. The result is a streak-free golden tan. It's important not to do anything that will make you sweat or shower for at least 4 hours after applying (which is why I apply it in the evening). This particular tan fades evenly and lasts a good 5/6 days on me. Available from Lookfantastic.
Lots of people prefer mousse formulas to lotions as they dry down quickly and aren't sticky so you could *technically* get dressed afterwards but I personally don't do that as I just don't believe that they don't transfer and don't get smelly over time but each to their own! Again, mousse tans tend to be tinted so you can see if there are any white areas. For a very deep tan, my favourite is St Tropez Self Tan Extra Dark Mousse. This tan is almost red-toned when applied initially (and it stained my toilet seat because yes, I tan my bum too!) but when the guide colour is rinsed, it leaves a bronze tan but somehow it doesn't look unnatural but I guess it depends on your colouring and how you look when you tan naturally. This tan lasts a good 7/8 days on me and fades evenly. Available from Look Fantastic, ASOS and Cult Beauty. I usually love Bondi Sands products but their recent Liquid Gold release has disappointed me as it doesn't give me the gorgeous golden tan like their Dark Self Tanning Foam. That being said, those who like a subtle tan will like it and the brand in general has a really great range. Another dark tanning mousse is Iconic Bronze Luxury Tanning Mousse in Extra Dark. Iconic Bronze is a very affordable range and this tan delivers on the Extra Dark promise however I find that it fades patchily and really catches on any areas of dry skin but I do have exceptionally dry skin so those with less dry skin may not find that problem. I personally find that the deeper the tan, the more drying the product is.
I recently posted about St Tropez Purity Water Gel here. It's definitely one of the best tanning discoveries I have made in years. It smells like a fresh fruity cocktail, is transfer-proof and gives a really beautiful, natural, golden tan that lasts for around 3/4 days. Because it's a water gel, it feels cooling and refreshing on the skin and it's also hydrating. I think that everyone should try this tan! Available from Cult Beauty, Look Fantastic and ASOS.
I'm not the biggest fan of tanning mists because I find that I end up spraying them everywhere and not just on me! That being said, whenever I do use one, the result is a very even tan and they are especially good for hands and feet. The St Tropez Classic Bronzing Spray gives a nice golden glow and lasts for around 4/5 days before fading evenly.
Again, I am not the biggest fan of tanning oils as I find them messy and because I have white bed linen and a lot of white furniture, I find that the best place to use an oil is in the shower cubicle as I can limit the mess. That being said, Bondi Sands Liquid Gold Self Tanning Oil gives a gorgeous, streak-free golden tan and doesn't dry my skin out at all. Again, this is one best applied at night.
It's only recently that I have started to use facial tanner because previously, any that I tried either broke me out or made my dry skin even drier! When I was sent Ecooking Self Tanning Drops, I was very intrigued because they contain hyaluronic acid so I knew they wouldn't dry my skin out and they also contain cucumber extract, which is cooling. I also knew that I liked quite a few of their products already (see post here) so I was pretty confident when trying them for the first time. I mix around 2 drops with my moisturiser and I get a very subtle golden glow to my skin. Obviously, you could add more for a deeper colour but I am happy with a hint of colour. These drops don't have to just be used on the face, you could also add them to some body lotion or hand cream, depending on where you want to tan.
Instant tanners are brilliant if you are caught last minute and don't have time to wait for a tan to develop. For years, my best friends and I would apply Rimmel Sunshimmer Water Resistant Wash Off Instant Tan before nights out. It gives a gorgeous golden tan and blends into the skin easily without looking streaky or muddy. It's also great if your self tan is fading and you want a little top up in certain areas without very much effort. It's also very affordable!
No matter which tan you choose to use, it is essential that you scrub well before application - preferably 24 hours in advance if you can. It's also essential that you moisturise very dry areas - elbows ankles, knees, wrists and hands. If you don't, tan will cling to those areas and look almost dirty, which is not a good look!
I would love to hear what your favourite tan is?
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Thanks for reading!