Self Tanners: Friend or Foe?

Written by Kimberly in: Skin Care

13 May 2011
Self Tanners: Friend or Foe?

Now that the warmer weather has finally arrived, we all want to bear a little more skin… that is until we catch a glimpse on ourselves in the mirror and are practically blinded by the pale, white skin! Eeek!

Well, before you go running to the tanning beds, or (gasp!) get ready to lay out, let me tell you how you can have instant gratification and an immediate tan: Self Tanners! I know, I know, they certainly have had a bad reputation in the past, but trust me, there are some amazing ones out there!

Self tanners are a great way to get bronzed, tan skin in a very quick and fairly easy manner (Not to mention cancer-free!). There are, however, a few pointers that will make things a whole lot easier for you.

  • Make a good choice:

    There’s no denying that there certain brands of self tanners turn skin orange while others don’t. What you’re looking for is a pretty, bronze color. Everyone’s skin is different, so it will be difficult to see what color a self tanner will turn on you until at least one hour after you first applied it. My advice is to do a test spot somewhere on your body before applying it all over. Some of my favorite self tanners have been Clarins Self Tanning Instant GelClarins Self Tanning Instant Gel (Actually, any Clarin’s Sun Product is great!), St. Tropez Tanning Essentials Self Tan Bronzing LotionSt. Tropez Tanning Essentials Self Tan Bronzing Lotion, and Dior Bronze Self-Tanner Natural Glow FaceDior Bronze Self-Tanner Natural Glow Face. All of these work really well with my super fair complexion and have little to no after stink.

  • Exfoliate!:

    I can not stress enough how important this step is! If you have any dry skin patches, then the color in the self tanner will cling to the dry skin making it darker then the rest of your skin giving very uneven color. This can be easily avoided by using any kind of body scrub before applying your self tanner. Pay special attention to the especially dry areas such as elbows, knees, and feet.

  • Get even:

    To achieve the perfect look, an even application of self tanner is crucial. I prefer using lotions, gels, or creams because I can take my time and really rub them into my skin. I keep massaging the product into my skin until it’s all absorbed. It takes a bit longer, but I’ve never had any streaking or uneven patches doing it that way. Spray tanners are great for quick dry time, but tend to dry a little too quickly for me, so be careful.

Tip Wash your hands!! If you don’t wash/scrub your hands after you’ve applied your self tanner, then the palm of your hands will “tan” and most likely in a very interesting pattern. :) Some people find that wearing latex gloves helps, but I find I get a more even application without using gloves.

So is self tanner friend, or foe? Well my darlings, in my opinion, they’re definitely a friend… if you know how to do it correctly, which now you do! You could also check out the spray tan scene (most salon’s have spray tan available these days). In any case, self tanning is a much safer alternative to having beautiful, bronze skin for Summer… or anytime!

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