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Last week, I asked you folks on Twitter if you’d be interested in a self-tanner tutorial. I’ve found that a lot of women want to use self-tanner rather than bake in the sun, but have been turned off by a streaky, orange or super fake look.
I have been testing out self-tanners since I was 13 years old. While I’m not embarrassed of my pale skin, it’s nice to have a touch of bronze for summer. I finally have a brand that works for me and a process that gives me a natural end result.
Here’s what works for me…
Brand: Clinique Self-Sun Body Tinted Lotion Light-Medium
You must first take a shower. Be sure to use a loofah. You want to slough off those dead skin cells to help smooth the application. I also prefer to have freshly shorn legs.
Think of your body as being divided into sections - Lower leg, upper leg, stomach, lower back, chest, upper back, arms, face and hands. The amount of lotion you use on each section depends on the size of the section. That said, less is more. Start with a little less than you think you need. You can always add more.
This blog is PG, hence the bathing suit. However, I usually apply self-tanner in the buff. It’s so much easier.
Apply the lotion in every direction possible - up and down, back and forth and circular. Start in the middle of the body section and then move outward. This way you keep the lotion lightest on your joints (like those knees) and your feet.
Brush the lotion down your feet lightly, keeping it lightest on your toes and your achilles. Or you can use the towel technique.*
As you do each section, rub the lotion into the previous section a bit to give a nice overlap. Apply quickly. If the lotion starts to feel sticky, you’re taking too much time and you run the risk of it getting streaky.
The center of your upper back will be your biggest challenge. If you’re not super flexible, enlist the assistance of a good pal.
Apply lotion on the fronts of your arms and move out from there. Your elbows should be last.
You need very little lotion for your face. Be sure to take it easy. Push into your hairline with your fingers just a bit. You don’t want a line around your face.
Now everything is covered. Including the palms of your hands. NOT NATURAL. So wash up. Get detailed with this. Scrub your cuticles, make a line of soapiness around your wrist. Don’t worry about what you wash off on your hands. We’ll remedy that in a sec.
*Towel technique: Using a dark towel, or one you don’t care about staining, squeeze just a dab of lotion and start brushing from your wrists toward your fingers. Keep the same application direction on the back side of your arm/wrist. Do the tops of your hands and the back of our wrist BEFORE doing your fingers.
All done! Take some time before getting on your good clothes. I like to do my hair and maybe even my makeup before getting ready. That gives the lotion a fair amount of time to dry.
The great thing about the Clinique Self-Sun is that there is a tint and even a little glow right when you apply. You’ll have instant color that will only deepen throughout the day. Apply two days in a row for several days of bronze.
Let me know if you have any questions! I’m happy to answer anything. Happy ‘tanning!’