I was fortunate enough to inherit some really tan Croatian genes. Seriously, when I go on vacation for even only a couple days, I turn a different race. My olive skin lasts for a while, but that tan can only stay for so long. Hence, I’ve become a master at keeping the glow year-round.
1. Spray Tans
Don’t be afraid to spray! I know we’ve all seen this…
but if you follow the rules every time, you’ll avoid the horror story. Ask the tanning salon employee what level they think you should get – there are usually three or four levels. Wash off all the makeup from your face to avoid blotches. Use the lotion provided for you inside the tanning room and cover your fingernails/toenails, knuckles, in-between your fingers and toes. You should put a light layer of lotion on your wrists and ankles because those areas can get spotty. Put your hair up and put on the haircap, wear the small blue feet protectors if provided in the room, put on the eye protection, and step into the booth. Face the spray nozzles, push the button, and step back onto the platform where there are probably footprints indicating where to stand. Stand with your arms straight out and bend your elbows straight down. Keep your fingers spread apart and your head facing up and straight forward to make sure that your neck gets sprayed. Stay still while the spray is going. Turn around (don’t pull a Ross) and wait til the spray starts on your back. Keep your elbows out but keep your hands in front of you so your palms don’t get sprayed. When you’re done, use the towel to wipe off the spray. Make sure you towel off any wet areas to avoid blotches. If possible, don’t shower for 4-6 hours after to get the best color.
Spray tans usually last for 3-5 days, depending on what you do or how often you shower. I usually spray on Thursday nights to have the maximum color for the weekend. Spray tans can be kind of expensive, so it’s worth it to buy a package deal at your tanning salon.
2. Actual tanning
We all know tanning beds are bad for you. I admit I still use them sometimes, oh well. Moving on. If you do use tanning beds, try to use them sparingly, always use lotion, and don’t fry yourself on a higher level than your skin can handle. If you’re tanning outside, always use SPF lotion.
I use a couple self tanning lotions to keep a glow going. One that a lot of people are probably familiar with is Jergen’s Natural Glow lotion.
It comes in a body lotion and a face lotion and moisturizes while giving you a gradual tan.
On my face, I use LORAC Self Tantalizer.
This face tanner only sticks for a day, so I put it on after I wash my face when I wake up. It is light enough to put on confidently and not be afraid that your face will turn orange, but its dark enough to make a difference for the duration of the day. You can find it at Ulta.
I also have this Neutrogena Micro-Mist self-tanning spray for your body -
It’s obviously not as good as going actual spray tanning, but it works if you want to spray in the morning to be a little darker for going out at night. It isn’t very strong, so don’t be afraid of the spray.
A girl’s best friend. Well, my favorite makeup component at least. If you’re putting it on for a casual day, you can just use it lightly on your face without any foundation, but if you’re putting it on for a night out I’d recommend using foundation to make sure the bronzer stays on and doesn’t get blotchy.
I swear by Bare Minerals “Warmth”. I also use a little bit of Bare Minerals “Golden Gate” blush on top of the bronzer to add a little color.
I recently bought MAC’s Bronzing Powder -
which work great as well, but you can’t beat Bare Minerals’ light, airy feel and natural looking color. “Warmth” really works with every skin tone because since it’s so light and powdery, it blends well and will never look caked-on.