Nothing says ‘summer body’ better than a tanned physique, looking like you just stepped out of the waves in a secluded, tropical beach. Tans have become extremely popular, turning heads in any crowd thanks to the exotic look it lends. But while going on an extended trip to some lush, palm tree-laden getaway somewhere far is the best way to get tanned, it’s not the most feasible method (unless money and time are of no concern to you, then by all means book that trip now).
A self-tanner (or sunless tan) is basically summer’s kiss put in a bottle for mortals to lather onto their skin. Dramatics aside, self-tanning has been the go-to option for those who want a post-Caribbean cruise look that’s doable in the comfort of their own homes.
A word of caution, though: while sunless tans are effective and convenient, the improper application of these products can result in an unsightly orange hue that looks terrible on human skin. Bali Body recommends the following self-tanning tips to avoid looking like a human carrot.
Find Out Your Tanning Speed
Dihydroxyacetone (DHA) is considered the most common and effective tanning agent in self-tan products. The effect of DHA on the skin is pretty similar to how the skin reacts to sun exposure. Thus, finding the right DHA level in a self-tanning product depends on knowing how fast the sun can tan your skin. Finding the right amount of coats for individual skin types and tones may take a few tries, but starting with small amounts at least allows you to avoid overdoing it and ending up as an Oompa Loompa.
Apply Measured Coats
For newbies to the self-tanning process, using a gradual lotion in moderate amounts is a good place to start. It won’t produce the fabulous bronze look right away because that’s not the point — just one or two coats of a tanning product are enough to give the skin a noticeably darker hue. Any more than that and it’s crossing dangerously into orange territory. For those with drier skin types, try using a tanning oil for an additional hydrating effect.
Achieving a glamorous desert glow requires patience — first, to avoid going all-out on self-tanning products and, second, to discover which one works best for your particular skin type. Self-tanning might offer convenience, but it still requires proper application knowledge and care for the best results.