You would be forgiven for needing a guide to fake tanning or not understanding the importance of a good tan. To a lot of people, they simply feel naked without it. Not only does it make your skin glow but it makes your lumps and bumps look less prominent and when you can get all that in a £9.99 bottle then why the hell not?
When done properly, it makes us feel like an olive-skinned goddess ready to take on the world, or at least get our legs out. If done wrong, it leaves us feeling like a 13 year old chav with a Jane Norman bag and a McKenzie tracksuit. There is a fine line between right and wrong and even the best make mistakes.
So when your girlfriend asks you if you can tan her back, understand that it goes far beyond slapping what looks like furniture oil all over your misses. This is your time to shine. Follow my step by step guide and I can assure you, you won’t go wrong. In fact, my boyfriend is quite the expert nowadays.
Exfoliate. As with most things in life, preparation is key. To do this, she must have a shower beforehand and use a nice scrub like Soap and Glory’s Breakfast Scrub (you can buy it in Boots). Dead skin builds up around the elbow, knees and ankles so an extra rub or two will be needed in these areas.
Give it a minute. As much you may want to get this over and done with and watch Match of the Day, patience is what will make or break you. Wait for around 30 minutes after showering before you even think about tanning to ensure the skin is totally dry. Any leftover dampness could mean a streak and no one wants a streaky tan.
Use a mitt. Oh yes, there are tools to go along with it. Not quite a high-tech beauty gadget but a tanning mitt is more iconic than Tom Hanks as Forrest Gump. Get the right mitt and the tan will go on perfectly.
Pick the right tan. This step should have maybe been added further up but if your girlfriend’s exfoliated and you’ve got your mitt ready and haven’t thought to buy any tan then I don’t think I can help you. I’ve recently been using Boni Sands and I love the dark colour it gives me without smelling super strong of fake tan.
It’s all about the application. Spray some of the foam onto the mitt, making sure not to overdo it. Pick an area to start and then using a long sweeping motion start tanning and repeat this until the body is covered. (It’s a bit like sanding down a wall). Despite probably wanting to focus on the chest area (cough, cough), it’s actually the knees, elbows and ankles that need the most attention. This is where you’re most likely to get streaks.
Don’t forget the hands. Not only are hands difficult to tan they are also always on show. This is why you have to be extra careful. When finished tanning, use the mitt to wipe the tops of the hands making sure to get in all the nooks and crannies. There is no need to add any additional tan to the mitt.
Let it dry. Once you’ve finished, you will need to let it dry before getting changed. This is your opportunity to double check anywhere you may have missed and quickly fill it in.
And, there you have it. One beautifully tanned girlfriend. Or, if you got it wrong, one very pissed off one who probably won’t leave the house for a few days. But at least you tried, right?