If you live in San Francisco, you are either pale, naturally tan or you spray tan. I look pretty ghostly all year long. It’s not a bad thing, but I love having some color. It makes me more confidant and I feel more attractive.
So how do I fake a tan? Back in the day, for special occasions, I would go to a spa and have a spray tan done. It was quick and easy, but it gets pretty pricey for $20-$30 a pop. Several months ago I received a recommendation from a friend. She told me the best product she tried was the Victoria’s Secert Self Tan. She swore by it, so I decided to try it for myself. I bought my first bottle and decided to give it a go. It retails for $15 and is 3.72 oz. It also has a 360° continuous application and smells like sweet/salty coconut. In my experience, I could spray my body 3-4 times with one bottle. I would also recommend buying a tanning Mitt from Ulta or Sephora. I bought the St.Tropez tanning mitt, which retails for $6.50. The mitt will make sure you apply evenly, and will protect your hands from discoloring.
I’ve been using this spray since February and have bought many bottles but I’ve only ever owned one mitt.
Description on website:
Surround yourself in the sexiest all-over glow. Superfine airbrush mist kisses skin with golden color that develops into a lasting, natural-looking tan within hours. The instant bronze tint lets you see where you apply, and the continuous spray works at any angle for an easy all-over, streak-free application.
I feel like the first time you use self tanning, it can be messy because you do not know what to expect. The first time I did it, I made my hands too dark. It’s really easy though, once you get the hang of it. It only takes me about 5-7 minutes to apply now. Follow my tips and it will make tanning a breeze.
*I recommend showering/applying at night, because you want the product to dry overnight (8 hours or so).
If nothing else, at least exfoliate. It’s probably the most important thing you can do before self tanning. I use a loofah and a body wash. A good scrubbing exfoliator would probably be better though. I would also shave your legs, armpits, and whatever other body hair you want to get rid of. I also wash my hair during this time because the less you shower once you have the self tanner on, the longer it will stay on. I then dry off, dry my hair or wrap it in a towel and apply.
Applying the Self Tanner
Once I am all dry, it’s time to apply. I usually put an old towel under me, so I don’t have to worry about staining or cleaning up. You should then wear a bathing suit or underwear/bra. Be aware of tanning lines. The next step is to spray the product on your skin. I start from my feet and work my way up. Once you start spraying, you will notice a watery foam coming out. Once it is out, have your mitt ready and rub the product in evenly. You can reapply areas if you want to be darker, but remember it will naturally become darker the longer you leave it on. I usually only use one coat. As you work your way up your body make sure you get all the small spots that you might not notice, especially when it comes to your arms and hands. I usually go up as far as the bottom of my neck and stop because I can match my face/neck with makeup but I suggest applying to your face/neck if you aren’t planning on applying foundation/bronzer. Don’t forget about the back of your neck, especially if you plan on wearing your hair up.
Once you have evenly applied all over your body, it’s time to dry. I suggest 5-10 minutes of drying in front of a fan before you put on clothes. Once you do, put on old, loose-fitting clothing. I never had a problem with staining but the smell tends to lingers. Then it’s time for bed and to let the tanning spray set in. I own white sheets and once in awhile the spray will slightly rub off on the sheets but once washed, it comes right out. When I wake up the next morning, I am naturally tan with a light golden bronze. I then shower to get the top layer off and I’m done.
*Helpful hint: the less you shower, the longer it will stay on. Usually it stays on two-weeks, if you shower quickly and every other day.
Now get a bright manicure and enjoy being a golden goddess this summer!