We’ve all heard the usual “Wear gloves” “Exfoliate” “Moisturise” yeh yeh, bla bla, same old generic kind of stuff . But here’s the professional advice that will change your tanning life, no-one has told you yet.
1 – Don’t mix moisturiser with fake tan!!
Irish girls seem to do this all the time, particularly with instant tan (Hello Rimmel Sunshimmer). Don’t. This is the number 1 cause of streaky/blotchy tan! Moisturiser’s main ingredients are glycerine and oil. These two ingredients will act like makeup remover on your tan causing it to streak and rub off on your clothes. It also stops the tan absorbing properly. In order for tan to properly adhere to your skin it needs to let the dye in it absorb into your skin cells by drying out, like paint. Moisturiser just gets in the way of this because it acts like a barrier between the tan and the skin. So your tan wont develop properly, it will rub off, and it’ll never dry. So if your skin is especially dry-just moisturise the night before, and apply the tan, instant or otherwise, 12 hours later –on its own!
2 – Wash your tan mitt after you use it!!!
Or at least once a month! This is one of the main causes of blotchy/patchy tan. Remember those adds about dirty kitchen sponges? Same principle applies with a tan mitt. All your (and your mates) dead skin cells build up inside a tan mitt after each use, turn brown from the tan, clump together, and start to rot, forming plenty of lovely bacteria
This can make back acne, dry skin, psoriasis eczema and anything else that can flare up, even worse. It also causes blotchy/patchy tan when the clusters of dead darkened skin cells come off the mitt and stick to you, usually on the back of thighs, shoulders and arms.
So just throw your tan mitt in the washing machine (on its own-you don’t want brown sheets) and say hello to a far more flawless tan.
3- Do your tan the night before
I cottoned on to this obvious idea only when I got into college- the land of last minute nights out. People only seemed to make the final decision on going out at the last minute when the whole gang was there. That left all us commuters with a conundrum. Go all the way home, do your tan (the most laborious part of getting ready) then drag yourself all the way back in the dark, or just decline. “Nah, I’m grand sure, I was hoping to catch up on scratching myself anyway”
So if you want to have a social life and have extra study time just do what I do- your tan the night before. You could even listen to recordings of your lectures as you wait for it to dry.
4 – Pick the right shade of tan for YOU
Fake tan usually doesn’t come in a “one shade fits all” variety. Fake bake for example comes in fair medium and dark. Fair is what most porcelain skinned Irish people should wear, it suits our pink and grey undertones so it can mimic the colour our skin actually does turn when we get a tan. But “Dark” is the most popular. This is intended for people like Eva Longoria –people who are already tanned but want to be even darker. It is not a measure of the strength of the tan. It’s just a “suitable for this skintone” indicator. It just doesn’t work on Irish skins pink and grey undertones. When an Irish person uses unsuitably dark tan no one will think you have Spanish ancestors or that your the image of Kim Kardashian/ Cheryl Cole. But they will wonder did your mom have an affair with an Umpa Lumpa and not tell your dad.
5 – Dont skimp on the amount you put on
If you’re going to do something, don’t do it by halves. Put your fake tan all the way up to your hips. And yes that does include your backside and the tops of your thighs. Dresses always ride up. You mightn’t see it, but everyone else will, and there’s nothing more embarrassing than a white backside! If you get ready with your friends and don’t want to be seen tanning your behind, then be a cute hoo’er and follow tip number 3.