st moriz
The sun is FINALLY out in NYC and it's time to start my sunless tanning routine. I am so pale, it's scary!

There are many ways to effectively sunless tan & I practice just about all of them!

Want to know a secret? What if I told you I worked in tanning salon in college? YA... I used to lay in tanning beds, even my face!! So many regrets!!! Now I am paying for it big time (read alllll about it here & here).

Around 5 years ago is when I started getting serious about sunless tanning. Funny enough, it had nothing to do with protecting my skin. I just liked the color better.

My motives have changed but I am a sunless tanning fan now, more than ever. Let's chat about everything you need to know about sunless tanning.

Let's start with 3 major tips...

1. No matter what type of sunless tanning you do, exfoliation is key! If you don't exfoliate before, you'll end up with discolored patches from the start. At the same time, you have to avoid exfoliation when you have tanner on.

2. You have to be really careful what type of moisturizer you use after you sunless tan. If it has a lot of oils in it, your tan will slide right off in a few days.

3. No matter what, apply cream on your elbows, wrists, hands, knees, bikini line, ankles and feet. Tanning products get stuck in skin folds and the cream acts as a barrier to prevent too much tanning product from being absorbed in those areas. If you skip this step, those areas will be darker than the rest of your body and looks like those areas are dirty.

Types of sunless tanning...

Generic spray tans at tanning salons are where I started sunless tanning. I am so down with those. I went every Monday for like 2 years strait!

Mystic Monday's at iTan in San Diego - AMAZING deal. They were only $10, now I think they are $15 but that's still 50% off. Spray tan booths are pretty affordable and I've always loved the results. Prepping & maintaining with the steps above are extremely crucial if you get a booth tan. If you skip any of them, it can go south really quickly. Trust me.

Airbrush tanning. I only started doing this when I moved to New York & I LOVE it. You don't need to worry about tip #3 with custom airbrushing. It's honestly the best. No streaks, no mess & they even do contouring around the collar bones and chest to enhance the shadows and glow. They are artists! I go to Brazil Bronze in New York. If you go there, tell them I sent you! Tips #1 & #2 are still very important.

The only downside to spray tanning is the cost, it's the most expensive sunless tanning.

Wether or not I am spray tanning, I always have an at-home method for in between sessions.

My #1 go-to is TanTowel. Obsessed. I've used them for years. It is a towelette that looks like a folded baby wipe but it has tanner in it. You just wipe it all over your body, being mindful of those skin fold areas, and then wait for the color to develop within a few hours. This is the cleanest and easiest method of at-home tanning.

The only downside is that you won't see major results like you will with spraying. It's very minimal but does give a nice glow. If you are using them regularly you could definitely build up a solid base tan, but takes commitment.

SHOP TANTOWELS


My newest obsession the last two years has been tanning foams & mousses. All last year, I used Bondi Sands tanning mouse. A friend recommended it & the results were great. Instant, dark, beautiful! Unfortunately, I had it in my luggage during a trip and it was taken away by TSA when I decided to carry my bag on the plane. Oops...

Anyway, I loved it but it washed off. Also, it was sort of a liability and could not be used on days I planned on wearing white.

SHOP BONDI SANDS


I decided to go on the hunt for a similar item that lasted longer and I came up on the St. Moriz line of tanning mouses, foams & sprays. This stuff is the real deal.

I have three products...

1. Insta-Grad tanning mousse for building a tan
2. 60 min fast tan mousse for immediate / dark results

After using these products, it looks like I've just stepped out of a custom airbrush tan. To get the right tan and avoid streaks and spots it does take some skill.

Any type of tanning product that is applied directly to the skin, can streak if it's not applied properly. To avoid any of that stress, I dilute it with moisturizer before applying. Remember tip #3? Same concept.

I mix the tanner in a bowl with lotion before applying it - it turns into a dark tanning lotion. This has been the most useful technique for me. The likeliness of streaking is almost non-existent if you do it this way. If you see a streak, you can easily buff it out.

SHOP ST. MORIZ


I mix with Curel Hydratherapy moisturizer because it's really light and feels like a gel more than a cream. There is hardly any room for error.

It's also the most affordable tanning option! The solutions are under $15 & mixing prolongs the life of the product as well.


SHOP CUREL


Remember, if you do sunbathe, always wear sunscreen to avoid damage and cancer. Sunless tanning is the best way to keep your skin healthy and youthful!