What's your golden age
00:14 GMT, 24 May 2012
The self-tanning business is booming, with new products launching every week. Here’s our guide to picking the best of the bunch, with tips from self-tanning experts, to help you get the right tan for your age…
In your 20s: Go for a deep tan
In your 20s, skin is naturally hydrated, so you can take a dramatic colour.
Pick a lotion-based tan that suits your skin tone. Pale skins suit light shades, mid-tones suit medium-olive skin and if you are darker-skinned choose the deeper bronzes.
We all know our skin changes as we get older. But did you know your fake tan should, too…
Avoid using products that are too rich, as these could make your skin break out. For your face, try UTan Deluxe Gradual Facial Tan — Miami Beach (22, boots.com). This cream develops overnight so you wake up looking sun-kissed.
For deep colour on your body, try the Sienna X Dark Glowing Self Tan, (23.95, sienna-x.co.uk). This contains 8 per cent DHA, the active ingredient in fake tan, and so produces a very deep colour.
EXPERT TIP: With careful application, a lotion-based tan can last up to ten days, says tanning expert James Harknett. ‘Use a foam mitt and apply in long, sweeping movements to get a lovely finish on the skin,’ he advises. ‘For a smooth application on trouble spots, such as knees, mix your tanning lotion with moisturiser so the colour will blend better.’
In your 30s: Get up and glow
James Read BB Gradual Tan Face Light and Medium
St Tropez Tan Plus Firming 4 in 1 Lotion
Thirty-something women are always on the go, so you need fuss-free multi-tasking products to make your life easier. Invest time in pre-tan prep, carefully exfoliating and moisturising so you’re less likely to get a streaky look.
James Read BB Gradual Tan Face Light and Medium (from 18.50, launching in June at qvcuk.com), is an easy-to-use pen that covers imperfections, hydrates and protects skin from UVA rays. The brush applicator allows you to apply with precision, without getting the product all over your hands.
On your body, Gwyneth Paltrow’s tanning expert, Nichola Joss, recommends using a product with a toning ingredient, such as St Tropez Tan Plus Firming 4-in-1 Lotion, (20, st-tropez.com). It is great when trying to build up your tan and firm your skin.
EXPERT TIP: Dry body brushing is the best way to prepare your skin for a long-lasting self-tan. ‘Use sweeping strokes towards your heart to boost your circulation and slough off dead skin cells,’ says James Harknett. ‘Brush daily, but don’t over-scrub.’
In your 40s: Lighten up
You don’t want your tan to be too deep when you reach your 40s, as it can look ageing — particularly on your face if you are naturally very pale.
Keep your tan just a couple of shades darker than your skin tone to keep a natural golden look.
On your face, try Fake Bake Face Platinum, (29.95, look fantastic.com). This contains high quality ingredients which have been combined with apple stem cells (extracted from the rare Swiss apple Uttwiler Spatlauber), scientifically proven to delay the biological ageing of essential cells.
If you want to go for a slightly lighter shade on your face, mix it in with your day cream — half tanner and half moisturiser. A good bet for your body is L’Oreal Paris Sublime Bronze Self-Tanning Golden Mousse, (9.99, boots.com) as it suits all skin tones and is hydrating.
EXPERT TIP: For great-looking legs, apply a thick layer of moisturiser after applying self-tanner, advises tanning expert James Read. ‘And for the magic supermodel touch,’ he adds, ‘lightly spray a little hairspray — yes, hairspray! — down the front of each leg. This gives an instant sheen.’
In your 50s: Focus on the finish
Abi O Soft Sun Self Tan For English Roses
Spray di Sole Sun Gelee
St Tropez Gold Illuminator
At this age, fake tan is less about the colour, and more about using the right products to add a luxurious feel to skin.
Spray di Sole Sun Gelee, (42, victoria health.com), gives your face an all-over glow. This is perfect for 50-somethings, as it leaves skin feeling soft and radiant. It also comes with a soft brush to blend the product, so you minimise the risk of stained hands.
On your body, Abi O Soft Sun Self Tan For English Roses, (24, johnlewis.com) has been specially created for those with pale skin that doesn’t tan easily and will produce a light, flattering shade on the skin.
It contains 4.5 per cent of self-tan’s active ingredient, DHA, so is ideal if you don’t want to look too tanned.
EXPERT TIP: To give your skin a luxe finish, mix moisturiser with St Tropez Skin Illuminator Gold (12.26, st-tropez.com), suggests James Read. Skin Illuminators provide a soft focus and you only need to use a tiny amount.
‘Using a tanning mitt, apply to the fronts of the legs, shoulders, decollete and tops of the arms to give skin a luxe sheen,’ he advises.
In your 60s and 70s: EVEN YOUR SKIN TONE
At this age, you lose a lot of natural pigmentation and skin can become sallow, so you need to warm up its tone with colour.
Choose products that are hydrating to help the skin look more youthful. If you use darker self-tanning products that don’t hydrate, the tan will rest between the lines and can look slightly yellow on the skin.
Try Sisley Self Tanning Hydrating Facial Care (78, uk.spacenk.com). This premium product is easily absorbed, doesn’t settle in fine lines and has a smoothing effect that enhances your natural skin tone.
Treat your body to Clarins Radiance-Plus Golden Glow Cream-Gel (28, johnlewis.com), which is both a moisturiser and self-tanner in one product. It is ideal to use before a holiday if your skin needs a healthy boost.
EXPERT TIP: Add a gradual tanning product to moisturiser. Expert skin-finisher Nichola Joss says: ‘Choose enriching Sisley Confort Extreme Body Cream, (79.50, uk.spacenk.com) which is good for dry skin as it contains shea butter.’ We also like Jergens Naturals Ultra Hydrating Intensive Body Moisturiser, (5.10, boots.com), a more affordable alternative.
To celebrate its 140th anniversary this year, Shiseido have reintroduced Eudermine, its very first skincare product. Available for the first time in the UK, the peony-scented moisturising water includes bio-hyaluronic hyper complex, which allows moisture to penetrate deeply into the skin. The tall red bottle, designed by Serge Lutens, looks good on any bathroom shelf.
Shiseido Eudermine, 49, harrods.com
Shisheido Eudermine (left)
Perricone MD NoConcealer Concealer SPF 35
Dark circles, be gone!
This new concealer from Dr Nicholas Perricone provides flawless coverage, disguising dark circles and imperfections. It can also can be used on the eyelids as a primer under eye make-up. With a non-chemical SPF35, it offers protection against UVA and UVB rays and won’t irritate eyes or sensitive skin. It is only available in neutral shade.
Perricone MD No Concealer Concealer SPF35, 37, perriconemd.co.uk and johnlewis.com