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For Luna's Guide To Fake Tan!

Posted on May 18 2018

Back in my twenties I eskewed fake tan in favour of the pale and interesting look. Dita Von Teese was my idol, flawless pale skin was my goal. My glamorous 1950s style swimwear was accompanied by factor 50 sun cream, a large hat and alabaster skin. Luckily, with youth on my side, this look worked. I felt smug in the knowledge I would never be afflicted with the orange hue of a certain President or patchy areas of peeling brown skin on my legs. Unfortunately, those days are over. The flawless skin of my twenties is thing of the past. Stretch marks, cellutlite and sagging skin mean the pale and interesting is no longer very interesting – pale and unattractive is more accurate. The idea of hitting the beach without fake tan fills me with horror. A tan lifts my mood and hides a multitude of body imperfections. 


The most important element of fake tan application is not how much money you spend, or even the brand you choose, it’s the preparation of your skin before hand. In the two days before you apply your tan, we recommend exfoliating followed by the application of a good moisturiser. Think of it like the foundations of building a house,  you wouldn’t start building without laying the appropriate foundations and you shouldn’t tan without preparing your skin! A good loofah will do the job followed by whatever body mosituriser you like. We love Soap and Glory – reasonable price, cute packaging, smells divine and leaves skin soft as a baby. What’s not to love? Be sure to wax or shave 24 hours before tanning, otherwise it will remove a layer of fake tan when you do! Also, Waxing or shaving legs right before you tan will lead to the tan sinking into your pores creating a polka dot look (fabulous on our 1950s retro one piece swimsuits, not so much on your legs!)

 The Tan

The sheer number of fake tans on the market can be overwhelming. But don’t fear, Team For Luna have tried a lot over the years and we’ve narrowed the search down to three of our favourites.

St Tropez Gradual tan

 This one is perfect for tan virgins. We do recommend mixing it with moisturiser if you’re very pale or its your first time. Make sure to start using it a few days before you want to look bronzed as this one builds up over a few days. The best bit is, if you make a mistake, you can usually rectify it the next day when you put on a new layer.

 Clinique Self Sun Body Tinted Lotion

A little bit more expensive but a beautiful creamy consistence. A non-oily body tanning lotion, this creates a medium to deep tan in just a few hours, leading a lovely sun-kissed glow and quite a natural look. What's great about this tan is that it's 100% fragrance-free! 

Cocoa Brown

 Irish womn Marissa Carter revolutionised the tanning industry when she launched Cocoa Brown, the world’s first one hour tan. That’s right, unlike most fake tans, this one develops in just one hour, making it perfect for when you have a last minute invitation to an event or a last minute trip to the sunshine (we should be so lucky!) From the hot pink colour of the bottle to its ingenious formulation, this is unlike any tan you’ve tried before. It’s also an absolute steal, coming in at under £10. If you are careful to prep your skin in the days before application, the result should be a streak free golden glow without a hint of orange!

 Taking Care of your tan

When washing, don't have your shower too hot! Lukewarm water will be best as your skin is less likely to sweat the tan off. Natural, light cleansers are best - any harsh soap products will remove the tan. 

Moisturising is the key to caring for your tan long-term. However, be sure you use an an oil free formula or you'll see that tan disappear! We recommend using a tan enhancing formula like Cocoa Brown's Gentle Bronze Gradual Tanning Moisturiser. 


 There’s no getting around it – 6-7 days after the application, your tan will start to peel, no matter how carefully you take care of your tan. At this stage it's best to remove it completely before starting the prep stage once again. A really good exfoliation session should remove the excess. A good pair of exfoliation gloves teamed with a scrub will have your skin back to its natural self. Remember to moisturise afterwards!

Now, you're ready to hit the beach - remember to team your tan with our fabulous high waist bikinis and 1950s inspired swimsuits! 


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