Look Good

Our top self-tan picks

Dug out your favourite Summer dress to make the most of our garden’s during lockdown’s sunnier days, only to realise just how pale you managed to get over the last few months? Don’t fret...

Written by High Life North
Published 05.05.2020

By Faith Richardson

With Summer rolling closer, we’re all baring a little more skin and wondering just how exactly we ended up so pale over the Winter. Rather than risking your skin by lounging in the sun in your back garden, give yourself a healthy glow the safe way.

The first thing we need to discuss is sun safety. Studies have shown that fake tan and your favourite SPF don’t mix. Chemicals in fake tan can actively attack the chemicals found in SPF’s that protect you from the sun’s rays, rendering them basically useless. Fear not though – as long as you apply your fake tan the night before you’re planning on being in the sun, then make sure you keep yourself topped up with sun cream the next day, you should be fine.

Make sure you prep properly before any fake tan application to ensure the best results – we’re talking exfoliation and moisturising 24-hours beforehand to make sure your tan has the best chance of being smooth and natural-looking, without any of those tell-tale patchy areas. Pay extra attention to areas that are usually drier, such as knees and elbows, and don’t forget the backs of your hands!

Amanda Harrington The Body Set 3-Step Tanning Method

Ann Harrington is tanning artist to some major celebs, so we hazard a guess that she knows what she’s talking about when it comes to self-tan. She swears by using a brush to apply your tan as it ensures a smoother and more polished appearance. Containing a pre-colour primer, bronzing mousse, and the coveted big body brush, this is your one-stop-shop for a celeb-worth tan.

Bondi Sands Back Applicator

Never worry about missing a spot again. If you don’t have someone on hand to help you tan your back, or you’d rather get it done yourself, the Bondi Sands back applicator has just become your new best friend. Easy to manoeuvre and containing three additional paddle heads, this will reach every nook and cranny that even the most limber arms can’t.

Bronzie Ultimate Back & Body Exfoliating Mitt (Charcoal Infused) 

Perfect for both a pre-tan exfoliate and for removing those stubborn tan remnants, use this on your whole body – you can even reach your back thanks to its handy design. Infused with charcoal to help draw out any blackheads and close off pores, your skin will be buffed to perfection in no time.

He-Shi Luxury Velvet Tanning Mitt 

If you’re a fan of a classic applicator mitt, why not treat yourself to this luxurious velvet version? The soft material allows an effortlessly smooth application and has a lotion-protection barrier to make sure you don’t get any tell-tale staining on your palms. Pour your tanning lotion of choice directly onto the mitt then sweep over the skin for a patch-free tan.

Clarins New Self Tanning Milky Lotion 

Suitable for face and body, Clarins’ Self Tanning Milky-Lotion has extracts of fig and aloe vera to ensure your skin feels luxuriously soft after applying – ideal for anyone with drier skin. Apply before bed to wake up with a light, natural-looking tan.

Isle of Paradise Self-Tanning Mousse – Dark

Isle of Paradise is famous for their amazing tan formulas that ensure your tan is streak-free and effortless. They’re also huge advocates for inclusivity, and their Instagram is a much needed pick me up of positivity. The Self-Tanning Mousse is combined with a colour corrective formula to keep your tan streak-free and HyperViolet™ complex that’s been proven to reduce sallow tones – so you don’t need to worry about that tell-tale orange glow after applying. Vegan and full of natural tanning and moisturising aids such as avocado and coconut oil, this is our new go-to.

St. Tropez Express Bronzing Mousse 

If you’re in a rush or don’t want to wait for your tan to develop, say hello to your last-minute saviour. You only need to leave it on for 1-hour to let it develop into a light glow, or up to 3-hours depending on how dark you want it. Enhanced with a vegetan premium to help match your pigmentation, this is a lightweight, easy to apply mousse with a natural and flattering golden hue – ideal for any last-minute zoom dates you might have.

ALLEVEN Colour Shield

Beyoncé’s make-up artist swears by this – need we say more? Considered more of a body make up than a fake tan, simply spray onto bare skin for an immediate glow. Quick-drying and enriched with innovative tone-adapting pigments to ensure it applies evenly and streak-free, this is airbrushing in real life. Available in a range of shades, you only need look at Queen B’s legs at Coachella to know this does the trick.

Sisley Self-Tanning Hydrating Facial Skin Care

We know this is at the pricier end of the spectrum, but we think it’s well worth splashing out on if you’re in the market for something a little more luxurious. Specially formulated to be applied to the face, it contains everything from hibiscus flower to sesame extract to ensure your skin is exfoliated and moisturised to provide an even and radiant tan.

Tan-Luxe Super Glow Hyaluronic Self-Tan Serum

Sometimes applying fake tan to your face can end up streaky, heavy or leaving your face feeling a little bit sticky; enter this multi-purpose serum from Tan-Luxe. Specially formulated to both hydrate your skin and encourage a steady development of fake tan, it contains hyaluronic acid and cocoa seeds to help shield the skin from external factors (like pollution) and combat the signs of ageing and dehydration.


NUXE Sun Hydrating Enhancing Self-Tan Face and Body

If you’re looking for something that does it all, Nuxe’s hydrating self-tan is formulated for both the face and the body so you can ensure you get the same colour all over. With an easy to apply creamy texture, this can be used daily to build the colour you want and contains subtle shimmer to make you look healthy and dewy year-round.

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