Forget fussy accessories and overpacked beach bags. The only travel essential you need this season is a glow so golden, even the sun would be jel. So whether you’re going away on holiday or styling it out at home with a staycation, here’s how to safely achieve beach-babe status…
A full face of make-up is a big beauty no-no on your hols – no one wants panda eyes or streaky foundation. But even the most beautiful of us needs a bit of, erm, help to look our best on the beach. So swap foundation for Nars Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer in Malaga, £27. It has SPF30 so there’s no need for extra sunscreen. Just remember to reapply frequently. And go for gold and give your lids a metallic hint with super long-lasting Maybelline Color Tattoo 24HR Eyeshadow, £4.99 (1). Slick!
First, exfoliate with Sun-Believable Scrub Me Body Exfoliator, £12 (2), to remove dead skin cells and any old fake tan. We shed around 30,000-40,000 cells a minute, so if you don’t scrub ’em away regularly, skin will appear dull.
Shower before you fake tan, as you need to leave the product on for a minimum of six to eight hours. If you can hold out overnight even better, as this will really give your colour plenty of time to develop. “Stay away from moisturiser before you apply your tan,” says Garnier tanning expert James Harknett. “It works as a barrier and can leave skin looking patchy.” He recommends targeting individual areas instead. “Applying a small amount of oil-free moisturiser to your elbows, knees, ankles and hairline will prevent product gathering in patches,” he says. Beware of deodorant, too. This can strip your tan away, so avoid using any before and while your tan’s developing, as white armpits aren’t hot.
“If you’re after a natural, shimmery glow, a mousse or gel such as Garnier Ambre Solaire No Streaks Bronzer Self-tanning Mousse, £13.99, is best,” says James. Apply your tan with Garnier Ambre Solaire No Streaks 2 Step Self-Tan Application Kit, £5.49, for a salon finish at home. “A mitt locks the tan into your skin, giving you an even colour.”
Keep It Up
Now you’re tanned to perfection, you’ll want to make it last as long as possible. “Taking a lukewarm or cold shower is best, as hot water will wash the colour away and reduce its staying power,” says James. “Avoid strong soaps or highly fragranced products as they will work against the tan. And always pat rather than rub yourself dry.”
Three days after applying your fake tan, James recommends using Garnier Body Tonic Sugar Scrub, £7.14 (3). “By lightly exfoliating and hydrating your body, skin will appear more radiant, which will keep your tan in check,” he says. “Keep skin well moisturised too, as this will make it glow. I recommend using Garnier Body Summer Body Moisturising Lotion Sun-Kissed Look, £5.10. It’ll hydrate your skin, and it contains six per cent fake tan, which will build up colour so your tan won’t fully fade away.”
Fake a toned bod with a sculpting shimmer product. “Apply where the sun naturally hits – tops of shoulders, collarbones and down your legs,” says James. Champneys Spa Indulgence Mediterranean Bliss Shimmering Body Oil, £10, contours to make limbs appear leaner, and Garnier Ambre Solaire Golden Protect Shimmering Protection Lotion SPF20, £7.49, illuminates skin.
Pop a trilby or floppy hat on, as an up-top cover-up will keep those locks lush. It’s not just your skin that’s affected by the sun – hair can become brittle, faded, frizzy, and weak if overexposed.
Embrace your hair’s natural wave with Tigi Catwalk Session Series Salt Spray, £12.10. It’ll fight humidity and keep frizz under control while giving you perfectly tousled tresses. Got coloured hair? Protect it with Redken Colour Extend Sun Take Cover SPF25, £13.95, a mousse that also conditions. Avoid products that contain alcohol, peroxide and lemon, as these ingredients will increase sun damage.