The Busy Girls' Guide to a Year-Round Faux Glow

Lisa Patulny

Some women just seem to be magical beauty unicorns. Especially the ones who manage to stay flawlessly bronzed, day after day. Somehow, they never skip a day of faux glow, but don’t end up with patchy or pale skin either. How is that even possible? (Don’t they have things to do apart from constant upkeep, like, ah, go to work?) Good news: apparently, it's less high-maintenance than we thought. We went to makeup artist, St. Tropez ambassador and all-round beauty guru Michael Brown for his time-saving tanning tips. Keep reading for the busy girls' guide to a year-round faux glow.

Tip #1: Use a Gradual to Get You Through

Eco Tan Winter Skin ($30)

According to Brown, the secret to a year-round glow is—drumroll please—gradual tanner: "With this kind of product you are totally in control—the more you use, the more colour you get." We couldn’t have said it better; gradual formulas are a low-effort way to maintain sun-kissed skin since you apply them as you would your regular body cream. Brown also recommends St. Tropez’s new Gradual Tan In Shower Lotion ($40), an innovative (and time-saving!) formula you apply in the shower, leave on for three minutes and then rinse off.

Tip #2: Think of Your Tan as Foundation

This might sound a little left field, but actually it makes a lot of sense. "A tan needs a hydrated base underneath it in order for it to sit naturally on the skin," explains Brown. Thus, it’s important to keep the skin on your body hydrated and supple, just as you would your face. Brown’s favourite lotion is St. Tropez Tan Enhancing Body Moisturiser ($20). "It’s made with a blend of essential oils, herbs, aloe vera and botanicals, is paraben free, and also helps to improve the way your tan fades," he says.

Tip #3: Exfoliate at The Right Times

Kit Tan Prep Body Scrub ($30)

Think you should scrub like you’re getting paid for it post-tan? Not so. "The more you exfoliate the more your tan will fade—plus, if a scrub is used too often it can actually cause the colour to fade unevenly," says Brown. Around three days after application, lightly exfoliate to help soften the colour without stripping it off. Choose your product wisely; scrubs containing uneven exfoliating particles or oils can degrade your tan leaving it streaky. Brown recommends St. Tropez’s Tan Enhancing Polish ($20). We also love ModelCo's new Exfoliate Double Sided Body Wipes ($13).

Tip #4: Boost Moisture Levels on the Daily

According to Brown, the most common tanning mistake he sees is a lack of moisture in the skin: "If you are using a self-tan every week and not hydrating correctly, this can dry out the skin, making your tan dry and patchy." Just as you should build up moisture levels in the skin pre-tan, keeping it up afterwards is key to longevity. We like PureTan Coconut Body Creme ($28).

Tip #5: Have a Quick Fix in Your Arsenal

Jo Malone Lime, Basil & Mandarin Bath Oil ($110)

If your tan does end up patchy and you need to remove it in a hurry, there are a few things you can do. Apart from a deep exfoliation using a manual or chemical exfoliant (or both), a good old fashioned scrub down with a mitt can help. (Try Eco Tan Extreme Exfoliant Glove, $20.) To help the process along take a long soak in an oil bath first. “This weakens old tan faster, allowing you to reapply quickly,” says Brown. 


What are your tips to staying bronzed year-round? Share them with us in the comments below!

Opening image: Zimmermann

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