August 5, 2011

The Bronze Age

The Best Sunless Tans

Beauty
blog

As the savvy set already knows, the first step to looking great in summer is the tan. Since we all know UV is bad for you – How could something that feels so good be so bad? Alas, sun isn't the only thing that falls into that category – the secret to maintaining that perfectly-hued glow must now happen indoors.

Good thing for us there are no shortage of shortcuts to great color.

The gold standard in self-tan lotions was set years ago by St. Tropez and its Self Tan Bronzing Lotion. The formula contains a secret weapon (okay, it's green pigment) to cut through orange tones common with other tanners. Modernize on the classic by going with the mousse formula – it has all the benefits of the lotion with better spreadability.

For the instant effect, go with The Multiple by Nars in Palm Beach. The creamy bronzing stick for the face blends to a velvet finish with just your fingers – making it perfect for on-the-go. I've never found a skin tone that it doesn't flatter. In a pinch, you can paint it on the body and then blend with lotion for all-over color that compliments every limb, curve, and crevice.

Quick review of the basics: Don't open the Tanqueray bottle before the tanning one (the perfect tan takes sober concentration). Exfoliate first and always wear gloves; orange palms are a dead give-away that you've been moussing instead of Amalfi Coasting. You can use a foundation brush to paint the formula on the tops of the hands afterwards.

Of course, if you rely on your assistant to pour your cereal and choose your accessories, these DIY options aren't for you. Head to my favorite eco-friendly spray spot, Spray di Sole (Beverly Hills at Four Seasons, Studio City, Trump Soho in New York, MGM Vegas, among cool other locations), and bare your bod for a contouring airbrush spray. The original spray tan gal Svetlana Feller is the go-to for Hollywood celebs who can't walk the red carpet in shades of pale or orange. Her contouring spray uses darker tones on jawlines, décolletage,and outer thighs to create definition and lean lines. They can even give you fellows a crunch-free six pack.

My final and most important advice: Don't be fooled into thinking that any of your honey hues are providing UV protection. They don’t. Remember, 90% of all aging is a result of sun exposure, so wear sunblock at all times – even if it's the only thing that stays on you.

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