6 Fake-Tan Mistakes We All Make (And How to Fix Them)

Go for gold - not streaky.

You'd think now that we have all spare time on our hands, we'd have mastered the art of self-tan. Sadly, mistakes are inevitable. But that's why we've teamed up with White To Brown to not only fix all your self-tan mistakes but to also give one lucky Irish Tatler reader the chance to win the ultimate self-tan hamper worth over €130. 

Self-tanning can seem like a daunting prospect. Those accidental streaks and patches always look bad, whether it's winter or summer. Coronavirus is affecting us all in very individual ways, but the one common thread we have throughout all of this is that we are spending much more time at home. Whatever your circumstances, the news detailing unprecedented actions can feel a little overwhelming and whilst we are all trying to stay as positive and upbeat as possible, sometimes we need a little helping hand. 

And, as frivolous as it seems, a little self-tan can work wonders for our self-esteem...even if it's only seen on the skin below your pyjamas and above your slippers. Much like makeup has the power to raise spirits when we're feeling down, painting on a golden bronze hue will allow us all to feel much less zombie-like as we get to grips with our new reality. Plus, if you're a tanning neophyte, then now is the perfect time to get practising!

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Still, no matter how long you've been practising the art of self-tanning, mistakes are inevitable. As much as we hate to admit it, orange streaks, mucky elbows, and awkward stains in between your fingers and toes are all apart of the process.

While fake tan mistakes are unfortunate, they are by no means permanent. Whether you're applying tan because you've got a hot virtual date or you just want to kill an hour or two, we've got a solution for you. 

You don't bother to prep your skin beforehand

The Issue: That cliché saying your teacher, lecturer, parent and Granny instilled into you as a child "Fail to prepare, prepare to fail" should have been invented for tanning. If you don't exfoliate or pay attention to key areas and close off those pores, the results will be streaky, uneven and darker in places you don't want it to be.

The Fix: Pre-tan exfoliate like a boss, buffing with specialized products, like the White To Brown Skin Polish (€10.74). This gets rid of any roughness, meaning your tan will glide on. Don't moisturise all over as this stops your tan from sticking properly. However, do give your elbows, fingers, between the fingers, knees and toes a wipe over with a moisturiser.

You don't give yourself enough time

The Issue: If you're rushing your tan, like most things in life, you will make mistakes. You might miss bits, overwork others and smudge all your hard work.

The Fix: While the obvious solution here is to simply not tan unless you have the time to devote it, there are effortless, quick-drying solutions on the market. Like the White To Brown Wash Off Bronzing Gel (€8.34), for example. This fast-drying skin perfector gives instant results and a commitment-free tan. The skin-nourishing, lightweight instant gel adjusts to all skin tones for a glossy glow that lasts for 24 hours. So even if you do make a mistake, it'll wash away the next day. 

You pick the wrong shade of tan

The Issue: Going too dark or not dark enough can leave you wishing that you hadn't bothered tanning at all while giving you flashbacks to when you first tried to colour-match your foundation – the last thing any of us need to relive these days. 

The Fix: When looking at tanning brands be selective and always choose a brand that has added skincare benefits. The better condition your skin is in, the longer your tan will last. White To Brown self-tanning products are infused with skin-boosting aloe vera and vitamins C & E to support brighter more glowing skin and more importantly, aid an even fade.

You're heavy-handed

The Issue: If you’re a self-tanning newbie - or coming back to it after a brief hiatus - you probably think it’s a good idea to start slow. Wrong. Skimping on the false tan can actually result in streaks and stripes. The concentration of DHA in the formula of your tan, not the amount you apply, determines how dark your skin will be. So using a pea-sized amount on your whole thigh combined with the over-rubbing causes streaks to appear when dry. 

The same goes for those on the opposite end of the spectrum, don't be tempted to laden on tan to get a deeper colour, because you will just end up looking dirty.

The Fix:  Instead, do one application, let it develop, rinse off the guide colour, then do a section application. Building up the colour this way gives your skin the chance to absorb the colour and the finish will be like you went on a fancy holiday to Bali.

You forget about your face

The Issue: We get it, putting self-tan on your face is scary – and should be avoided. But that doesn't mean you can forget about your face altogether. Just like with your makeup, if you don't add little extras at the end once your tan is safely in place, it can look less than luxe and fade at super-speed. Maintenance is key. 

The Fix: Self-tanning water. You can actually use the White To Brown Tanning Water (€23.94) all over the body, but it works especially well on the face. Distilled with skin-boosting coconut, aloe vera and vitamins C & E, simply spritz on and be sure to gently buff around the nose, eyes, and mouth with a soft muslin cloth

You don't wash your mitt

The Issue: You wash your makeup brushes, beauty blender, towels and t-shirts after every use, so the same goes for your mitt. Using a dirty mitt loaded with old tan leads to splotchy, uneven tan.

The Fix: After every use, hand-wash a mitt with soapy water, rinse it and let it air-dry.

So now you know all there is to applying self-tan like a pro, we're guessing you could do with a product or two. Well, that's exactly why we've teamed up White to Brown! 

To be in the chance of winning the ultimate self-tan hamper worth over €130 simply answer the question below: 

Create your own user feedback survey

This competition is open to the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland residents aged 18 or over unless any other age restriction is specified or implied. T&Cs apply. Closing date 15/04/2020.

Main image by @irishtatlerbeauty on Instagram

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