Feel Good: My Top Tips For Effective Fake Tanning


With my holiday just around the corner I decided it was time to give my pale, pasty limbs a bit of colour and, so, for the first time in about ten years I hit the bottle! The fake tan bottle that is. Here are my learnings…


1. Do your research. I’d heard great things about St. Tropez Tanning Mousse but didn’t really want to pay £30! After watching this video from Fleur de Force I trialled the St. Moritz product from Bodycare and was pleasantly surprised.

2. Do even more research. I might have shunned their product, but this video from St.Tropez gives you good instructions on how to apply a fake tan mousse. But…

3. It fails to mention to apply it to your bum cheeks! You’d look a bit silly walking around in a bikini with a white bottom when all of your other limbs were bronzed up. Just something to bear in mind…AND…

4. It doesn’t factor in how difficult it is to do your own back. Try to draft someone in to help at this point. It ensures more even coverage and saves you from feeling that your arm is going to pop out of the socket (or is that just me?!).

5. Do use a mitt to save staining your hands. But…

6. Remember not all mitts are created equally. The first mitt I tried was from Superdrug and, although I loved the jolly pink colour, I found that the seam that joined the two sides of the mitt together scratched me as I was applying the fake tan. I tried a cheaper alternative from Bodycare and didn’t have the same problems, plus I got protective gloves to wear with it. Find something that suits you.

7. Do shave the day before.


8. Do exfoliate well before you apply fake tan, but don’t use an exfoliator that’s too greasy. I used Soap & Glory The Scrub of Your Life and a scrub mitt and found it worked well.


9. Do moisturise well before you apply fake tan, but beware of ultra-rich body butters, these can take a long time to sink in making the (already long-winded) fake tanning process even longer. A light body lotion is probably better. I used Soap & Glory Butter Yourself Moisture Lotion.

10. Do stand on an old towel when you apply your fake tan, preferably on a floor that can be wiped clean. Accidents happen. Prior preparation prevents your bedroom carpet being stained.

11. Do allow about fifteen minutes for the fake tan to sink in before you get dressed.

12. When you do get dressed don’t wear your best clothes. I either wear a pair of old pyjamas. Or if we’re expecting guests I have a dress that cost just £2 from Primark that I purchased especially so I didn’t have to worry about ruining any of my best clothes.

13. Follow the pack instructions. Obvs.

14. Leave the tanning product on for as long as the pack says and then rinse off the residue for a natural colour and no need to worry about dying everything orange.

15. If you do go to bed without rinsing the product off you risk dying your bed sheets. I have Orla Kiely bed sheets. Not rinsing is not an option in my world.

16. Do see if you need a different product for your face. Fake tan products can make your skin dry. That’s not an issue for me as I have very oily skin naturally. If you do have dry skin you might want to find a product that’s designed specifically for use on your face.

17. Once you’ve rinsed off the product. Slather yourself in body cream and apply after every shower to maintain the colour.

18. Don’t get carried away unless you want to look like an extra from TOWIE. It’s so easy to get hooked and want to be darker each time you apply. Go easy to keep it natural looking to avoid the ‘you’ve been Tango’d‘ look.

19. Do tie your hair back when you’re applying fake tan and keep it pinned up whilst the product takes effect.

20. Do allow ample time. It takes longer than you think, especially if you’re not used to fake tanning. Believe me, it’s not something you want to rush!

What top tips do you have for fake tanning? Have you ever had any fake tan disasters?


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