Good riddance to the days of laying out, burning and peeling to get that summer tan. Today’s sunless tanning products are a much faster and healthier way to get your glow on – without the risk of sun damage and wrinkles.
“Sunless tanning products are the best thing created for your skin,” says Jordan Zecchini, hair stylist and key holder at Beauty Collection Marina del Rey.
Many of today’s self-tanning options offer a naturally gradual build, and they don’t streak, stain or stink like those early tan-in-a-can products. You can even tan before work without anyone being the wiser.
These products are also much easier on the wallet than those pricey tanning salons. Here’s how to get the perfect sunless tan this season.
If you are new to sunless tanning, the single-application towelette is your new best friend. These pretreated wonders take the guesswork out of how much product to apply, and they blend well for even coverage, too.
Zecchini started using TanTowel Full Body towelettes at age 17. “It’s the easiest thing to do,” she says. “I love the tan it gave me. It’s very natural-looking and completely convenient.”
Customize Your Tan
Once you’ve mastered the single-application process, you are ready to try a tanning mousse. This popular option provides more flexibility to help you find the ideal color and duration for your sunless tan.
After relying on single-use products for a while, Dolores Montero, aesthetician at Beauty Collection Calabasas, tried a tanning mousse and instantly loved her results. “I liked the coverage and look better,” she said. “There was a deeper tan with it.”
Today, her favorite tanner is the Million Dollar Tan Mermaid Mousse Extreme.
“It has a beautiful undertone,” she says, “and it has a guide color, so you can see where it’s going.” After you rinse away the guide color, the tanner is formulated to build gradually, for a more natural effect.
“Everyone has a preference on a brand,” says Zecchini, who favors the Vita Liberata pHenomenal 2-3 Week Self Tan Mousse because it also builds over time. “I love it because it is gradual, rather than one day you’re dark.”
Hot tip! No one wants a streaky tan. When applying mousse, always use a mitt, such as Montero’s favorite Million Dollar Tan Blend Friend Mitt, which is made from a micro-soft sponge fabric for optimal blending. Use upward, circular motions for an even, natural coverage.
Before you use any type of sunless tanning product, read your label thoroughly and follow the directions for best results. Take our advice:
Always do your prep work. Before you apply, make sure your skin is clean and smooth. This means exfoliating, shaving and thoroughly drying your skin.
Read the label to see if moisturizing is recommended or if it could mess with your results. Remember: Some tanning products feature built-in moisturizers.
Zecchini often preps her skin and applies her tanner at night, then showers again in the morning. Montero prefers to prep her skin the day before, then applies her tanner the next day to ensure her skin is thoroughly dry. Choose the routine that works best for you.
Reapply. Application should take about 10 to 15 minutes, and the product will generally dry very quickly. How often you reapply is up to you – and the individual tanning product. For example, to keep the deeper tan she prefers, Montero reapplies for three days in a row every two weeks.
“Some tans last longer; others don’t,” says Zecchini, who reapplies weekly. “You have to consistently do it to keep it up.”
Hot tip! Don’t forget your SPF! Even with that golden glow, your skin is still vulnerable to harmful UV rays. For lightweight, nongreasy sun protection, Montero recommends Sun Visor Ultra Light Oil-Free SPF 30 Mist for the face and UltraLuxe MicroVenom Face & Body SPF 30 for the body.
Tune in next week for more “Golden Rules” to perfect your golden glow.