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Faking it

By Rebecca Connell

Faking it

Ah the tan, that endless dilemma! It follows us throughout the year, through pasty autumn and dreary winter, to finally rear its ugly head in summer. Unlike some of our luckier French counterparts, the tan is not something we can accumulate during the year and then, when summer comes, go on to effortlessly done skirts revealing toned and lightly bronzed limbs. Indeed, us Brits (blame it on the weather if you will) are something of a laughing matter when it comes to our skin colour: the general stereotype being one of overall paleness throughout the year and then the ability to turn a surprising shade of scarlet when the sun finally does come out. But surely we are not the only ones to suffer from this? How does everybody else do it?

The truth is, though it is undoubtedly possible that certain people are just permanently tanned, it is not exactly probable. So what do these people use?

Fake tan
No doubt you will already have heard of this and some of you might have even tried it but until recently, this had remained something of a danger zone to me. Scared off by the sight of women San Troped to within an inch of their lives and having seen many a friend succumb to using various products only to come out of it looking like piebald Oompa Loompas, I shied away, instead, from anything rising above the ankle, hiding away my pasty legs in shame.

This year, however, was different. Peer pressured into it by billboards and TV adverts showing skinny, bronzed goddesses resplendent in their micro swimwear, I finally took the plunge.
I opted for Clarins’s latest product. The application was easy, scarily so: I was certain that since everything had gone so smoothly, there would be consequences. I waited in anticipation of the disaster that would come when, to my surprise, 15 minutes later a perfect, natural looking tan had developed.

I was so impressed that I have not stopped using it since and have even become a rather fervent advocator of it to all my friends.
Prone to burning myself fake tan is a much more preferable option.
With fake tan there is no pain, no lying in the sun hours on end attempting to get an even colour, no tan lines, and most importantly, no risk of skin cancer.

But hey, don’t just take my word for it, try it out and see for yourself.
Your basic fake tanning rules are simple: Exfoliate first, use a bit of body lotion b
efore applying, and avoid feet and ankles altogether. Go for a paler shade, and build up if necessary. Once you've mastered the art - you'll never go back to having white thighs.

Pick of the best:


Garnier Ambre Solaire Express Spray Bronzer- £8

Easy to apply.

Dries quickly.

Gives natural, even looking tan.

Apricot extract gives it a lovely smell.

Johnson’s Holiday Skin Moisturiser- £4.99

Easy to apply.


Natural colour with no streaking.

Leaves skin silky soft.

No loss of colour after showering.

You can control your tan as it is a gradual build up.

L’Oreal Sublime Bronzer-£10.99

Easy to apply

Natural colour


Light scent

Reasonably priced

Lasts a while - maybe a month of using every 2 days.

Silky skin


Air Stocking-£25

Powdery spray-on tights.

Ideal for summer when it’s too hot for tight.

Comes in four colours: natural, terracotta, bronze, and coco.

Totally waterproof.

Lighter tones give perfect, flawless legs.

30+ applications.

No7 Quick Dry Tinted Lotion- £10.50

Simple and straight forward.

Lovely brown colour, no orange glow.

No streaking.

Very little smell.

Dries quickly: you can dress after 15 minutes.

Difference in colour after about an hour.


Clinique Self Tanning Lotion- £12.50

Great colour.

Looks really natural.

Comes in two colours: light or dark for different skin tones.

Does not leave you with orange hands.

Tube lasts a couple of months.

Smell is not bad.

Only have to wait two hours before showering.

Clarins Auto-Bronzant Visage Self tanning Gel- £16.50

Goes on easily, just like a normal moisturiser.

White in colour.

Smells great.

Natural sun kissed glow.

Not over the top, just removes pastiness.

Happy Tanning!


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