We asked three of the biggest names in the bronzing world to reveal their beauty hacks to transform a standard DIY tan into a professional faux glow
Eat your greens: Green veg – in particular spinach, kale and avocado – are high in L-lysine, an amino acid that helps faux-glow formulas develop on your skin. Topping up on this acid also ensures your colour looks smooth and even, and lasts longer.
Tan those hard-to-reach areas: Keep a 'mitt stick' on standby for back-tanning duties. To make one, slip a tanning mitt over a long-handled back brush and secure in place with a hair band. Apply product to the mitt and, hey presto, you’re able to tan every inch of your back – no contortionist skills required.
Top up your hand tan: Fake tan on your hands fades faster than anywhere else because you wash them more often. When you need a quick fix, try Vita Liberata Trystal Minerals Self Tanning Bronzer – it gives an instant gratifying glow while leaving a subtle lasting tan beneath.
Choose the right tan tone: Confused about which bronzing hue will suit you? Think about your skin tone – generally speaking, darker skin tones can pull off deeper tans, whereas gradual tans are the way forward if you’re pale (or a nervous first-time tanner). If you’re still unsure, take a tan selfie to see what you look like in pictures.
Speed up your tan’s drying time: Mousse and spray formulas dry fastest – but if you’re on a really tight turnaround, blast your skin with a hairdryer on a cool setting to speed up the process.
Ace a sun-kissed summer face: For a faux glow that looks like the real deal, run an ice cube over your face to prevent your tan settling into pores and then pat your face dry. Once you’ve applied the tan, use a fluffy powder brush to buff it into your hairline, jaw and down your neck for a seamless, authentic-looking finish.
Mess-proof your tan: New to the self-tan gang? St Tropez’s Gradual Tan In Shower Lotion is a fast and fuss-free way to glow. Use the shower, then turn it off while you apply the lotion (wet skin helps activate the tanning agents), wait three minutes, rinse well and pat dry. You’ll be subtly bronzed in eight hours’ time.
Keep your glow going: Prior to tanning, get serious with a scrub – this ensures that your self tan is absorbed by new cells instead of dead ones so your tan can work to maximum effect. After tanning, avoid hot showers and products containing oils – both break down bottled tans faster.
Fix a tan disaster: Don’t panic – you have a window of a few hours to fix any tan dramas post-application. If you’ve left it too late, have a soak in a warm bath and add in your favourite fragrant oil – oils soften the tan so you can wipe the slate clean with a scrub faster.
Photographer: John Akehurst / Make-up artist: Shinobu at CLM / Hair stylist: Roxy Attard at CLM / Manicurist: Emma Welsh / Props stylist: Stephanie Kevers / Model: Joyce at Established