Fake-tan, or self-tan it is often referred to nowadays, has come on leaps and bounds in the last few years. Long gone are the days of radioactive orange, streaks, smudges and the overpowering biscuit scent.
Thank you to these recent developments in self-tan, I was finally seduced and treated myself to my very first spray tan yesterday. I am naturally very fair – an English rose, so unless I go on holiday for at least a month it would be wishful to think I will go any darker than a simple sun-kissed glow. Obviously living in England, where our winter far surpasses our days of sunshine (current heat wave aside), and working indoors doesn’t help my milky complexion either.
It wasn’t always liked this though, as a child I would tan like an apple browns. Then as soon as I hit my teens my skin decided it didn’t want to tan anymore, and my days of deep golden glows were replaced with heat rashes and lobster legs – I know, very attractive.
Therefore as I dusted off my shorts and summer dresses this week, I decided enough was enough. Now, I am relatively happy in my body, so when I start to pick outfits to cover up my pasty legs (when I actually like my legs), something is wrong. Plus, I am donning a little backless white number in three weeks time for my 23rd and I do not want to look like a complete milk bottle – all in all the perfect time to get initiated with self-tan.
I was definitely spoilt for choice when I came to pick my tan, from the breakthrough St Tropez, ever-popular Fake Bake, or new favourite Sienna X. In the end I opted for Sienna X because it was on offer at my local salon, however its huge celebrity following also swayed me, with the likes of Jessie J, Ellie Goulding, Harry Judd, and the rest of the Strictly Come Dancing crew as fans.
The first 12 hours were the best – I was finally a gorgeous deep brown, but after the 8 hour setting period wash off I turned a creamy caramel tone. Both shades looked equally as natural though, and most importantly natural to my skin tone. What I love the most about Sienna X is their grade system, you can choose between an 8 and 16 depending on how dark you want to go – I decided on a grade 8 as a beginner, and all tans fade naturally between 5 and 7 days. Although the darker you go more exfoliation and scrubbing would be needed to banish the stubborn leftover patches.
I have only used gradual tans in the past, but most of these have left unnatural yellow blotches, so kudos to Sienna X for converting me. I can firmly say I will be joining the ranks of self-tanning, starting off with occasion tanning and then if I am brave enough I might even give a home tan a try one day. Self-tanning is safe, and if it makes you feel good, then why not? We all know of the dangers of the sun and sunbeds, and whilst the sun can be good for you if you stay protected and take it in moderation (the sun gives out vitamin D), sunbeds are one area of tanning I will never be trying out.
I have always been one to protect and perfect my skin, remember prevention is always better than cure, and what you do with your skin now WILL affect you in the future. Don’t want wrinkles or damaged skin? Then don’t cook yourself; because you wouldn’t put your hand freely on a BBQ would you?
These developments in self-tan are likely to progress even more so in the coming years, and I am really excited to see where the market will go. Already self-tanning has become a huge part of both women AND men’s beauty regimes, so why should it be considered any different to make-up; it is in a nutshell make-up for your body? That is to say I still think we should steer clear of the umpa lumpa look, I am all for enhancing natural beauty, but orange is just not natural.
For more information please visit Sienna X
Five helpful tips when self-tanning:
1) Exfoliate and de-hair 24 hours before tanning.
2) Self-tan 24 to 48 hours before a special event to make sure your guide colour has fully washed off.
3) All tans vary, but leave 8 hours for a Sienna X tan to develop before putting on light or tight clothing.
4) Again during the development period avoid water and perspiration – it can cause drip marks down your tan.
5) Moisturise daily to prolong the life of your tan and to keep skin hydrated.
Don’t want to self-tan, but don’t want to cook either?
Parasol Sun Care: Perfect for those who suffer from sensitive skin – a one day application lotion, which protects the skin from sunburn and prickly heat. This product saved my life last year on holiday, I didn’t burn or suffer from a heat rash once, and I still came home with a golden glow.
Elemis Tan Accelerator: Prepare the body for sun exposure by stimulating its natural melanin production prior to your holiday. This is great for sun sensitive skin too, or for those of you who just want a little helping hand to prolong your tan. I haven’t used this as of yet, but have read amazing reviews; I cannot wait to try it next time I go away.
Hawaiian Tropic Tanning Oil: You may have read my review on this oil a couple of years ago, simply apply over the top of your usual sunscreen to aid tanning. Oil isn’t the safest way to tan, but this Hawaiian oil has an added SPF for extra skin protection.
Closet Charms is also supporting Fake Bake’s Save Your Skin Campaign.