5 Jul, 2023

Faking It: How To Get That Summer Glow

Top makeup artist Kim Brown shares her favourite methods and products to achieve the most authentic sun-free summer tan...

Whether you’re looking for a subtle everyday glow or a deeper tan ahead of a holiday, there are plenty of bronze-giving options to choose from. And if you like a longer-lasting fake tan or a light bronzing makeup, here are some of (in my opinion) the best out there…

Starting with lasting fake tan. Preparation is key for the best results. I’d recommend shaving 24 hours prior to tanning to avoid dark pores.
Start with a good cleanse and exfoliation to get rid of dead skin. Any good body scrub would work or even an exfoliating mitt and try to make sure you don’t have any traces of deodorant or perfume, which can discolour your lovely glow. Then, start to apply a thin layer of moisturiser (unperfumed) to knees, elbows and ankles to stop pigment collecting too heavily in those areas. After that, look to a good mitt to help buff the formula into every area of the body, or alternatively try a bronzing brush. The key is to be meticulous with covering every area but be sparing around feet, ankles, knees and hands. I also like to start on the outside of my arms so there is less product on the mitt when it comes to blending the tan onto the inside, where you would naturally be lighter.

Tanning Mitts

St. Tropez Dual Sided Luxe Tanning Applicator Mitt

Boots Glow Face & Body Tanning Mitt

Coco and Eve Soft Velvet Self Tan Mitt

Tanning Brushes

Skinny Tan Miracle Tanning Brush

Vita Liberata Tanning Body Brush

Lasting Tanners

The Isle of Paradise Self-Tanning Drops – Dark. This is great if you prefer to add tanning drops to moisturiser.

The Coco and Eve Bali Bronzing Foam is vegan and packed with natural ingredients.

St. Moriz Advanced Colour Correcting Tanning Mousse is really affordable and hydrating for dry skin.

Skinny Tan Instant Tanner is smudge proof and instant.

Also Beauty Pie Awesome Bronze™ Super Formula No-streak Self Tanning Mousse

Loving Tan Deluxe Bronzing Mousse contains lots of great ingredients to take care of your skin.

Gradual Tanners

I’m a big fan of these because they are definitely more forgiving. You start with a very subtle glow, meaning you are less likely to get streaks. You also have more control of the depth of tan. The more often you apply the deeper the colour. Some of my favourites include…

Vita Liberata Fabulous Gradual Tanning Lotion

Coola Organic Sunless Tan Firming Lotion

Tan-Luxe The Gradual Tan Lotion

Clarins Self-Tanning Milky-Lotion

Dove DermaSpa Summer Revived Self Tanning Body Lotion – definitely an old favourite that has stood the test of time.

Now onto bronzers and tanning makeup. The best bronzers can elevate a sallow complexion, add definition and create a sun-kissed glow. A fast way to make the skin look healthy and sunny. I tend to choose bronzers that are only a couple of shades deeper than the natural skin tone as I like a natural look, but if applied in the right way you can go deeper.
I like to use a larger fluffier brush for this as you want it to be seamless and blended. Load up the brush with your preferred bronzer then pat the excess onto the back of your hand. I like to apply bronzer where the sun naturally catches the high points of the face – across the forehead, temples, cheek bones and jaw line. This will give a very natural but sculpted look. When there is less on the brush, apply a little across the nose and the brow bones with light pressure for a lighter touch. Add more to your brush, then apply onto the collar bones and décolletage, then up the neck using a light pressure for an even glow.
These are some of my favourite bronzers…

Chanel Healthy Glow Bronzing Cream. This is an absolute staple in my kit.

Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Sun-Kissed Glow Bronzer

Tower 28 Beauty Sculptino™ Soft Matte Cream Contour + Bronzer. Another one of my kit staples. Lovely texture.

Milk Makeup Matte Bronzer is great for a natural look.

Dr Hauschka Translucent Bronzing Tint. This can be added to moisturiser to create a bronze base or can be applied onto clerk bones and temples for more of a sculpted tan.

Westman Atelier Beauty Butter Powder Bronzer – Coup de Soleil is great for pale complexions.

Guerlain Terracotta The Bronzing Powder is a classic for a reason. So bendable.

Words: Kim Brown

Main image: Pinterest