Top tips to do away with fake tan faux pas
This is more of a public service announcement than an article. I mean, I'm taking it as my cue to share with you my faux glow mistakes to help ensure you don't get caught making the very same ones, in turn helping you look more bronzed beauty, less patchy disaster.
I know what you must be thinking: "But Olivia, you're a beauty writer! Surely there's nothing you can't do?" Well it's totally sweet of you to say, but indeed, even beauty writers have their weaknesses. Achieving a seamless fake tan appears to be mine.
It doesn't matter what I do, I always seem to end up looking a little patchy, darker than I should, with the most obvious-looking orange tint on both hands. It's become an in-office joke. (Cruel witches, aren't they?)
Thankfully, I've picked up quite a few tips and tricks from others over time, and each time I attempt to self-tan, I learn a thing or two from my own mishaps. (Isn't that the best way to improve?) So, here we go: my foolproof way to achieving a flawless faux glow, and stain-free hands to boot.
FAKE TAN FAUX PAS TIP #1: Prevention is key.
As a good fake tan can last between 1-2 weeks, it means the fake tan particles bind to your skin cells pretty vigorously. The best way to deal with fake tan faux pas is of course to avoid them altogether. But of course, it's not always that easy, is it?
The good news is it can be. Before you begin self-tanning, ensure you have properly exfoliated your skin, especially parts of you that are more susceptible to dryness (as skin cells in these areas will tend to flake off first, leaving you looking patchy.) Also ensure you aren't wearing any moisturiser or deodorant as fake tan will struggle to attach to these areas. However, a little body butter or Vaseline should also be applied to joints or areas with gathered skin, such as your elbows, knees, backs of your ankles and between your fingers to ensure colour doesn't gather in these areas.
FAKE TAN FAUX PAS TIP #2: Beware of stained hands.
Contrary to popular belief, washing your hands straight after self tanning doesn't always help prevent staining as it can take a few hours to develop and show on your paws, and can often withstand soap and water if it has already begun to absorb into your skin.
Dodge orange-tinted hands by wearing clear gloves during tanning and removing one glove at a time to apply a little tan to the backs of your hands so that they don't look a completely different colour to the rest of you.
FAKE TAN FAUX PAS TIP #3: Steer clear of detergents.
Some people (ahem, possibly myself included) have thought of taking to tan-tinted hands with a hard-working household detergent. You know, the stuff you use on your grimy pots and pans, the stuff that definitely isn't intended for use on your skin. Not ever.
Why? These detergents contain chemicals that act as a chemical peel for your cookware. A chemical peel that gets rid of impurities and all of your skin’s natural moisture in the process.
You may remove some of the colour from your hands, sure. But you'll be left with uber-dry, sore paws and I know you don't want that.
Recap: To dodge tan hands simply keep your clear gloves by your side and remember to wash your hands as soon as possible after coming into contact with fake tan. Otherwise, a new pair of leather gloves or a really big ring might just be your saviour for the next one to two weeks!
FAKE TAN FAUX PAS #4: Make your tan removal mitt your best mate.
As your tan nears the two-week mark, you may start to see it become a little scarce in places like the inside of your elbows and near your shoulders and chest. This means it's time to exfoliate again. Grab a tan removal mitt like Tan Off and add a little soap and warm water. Small circular motions with a little force behind them should see your tan start to buff away and leave you looking soft, supple and so not patchy.
What's your fake tan faux pas fix?
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