I am so bright white and I crave color. While I used to be able to tan as a child - my school pictures from grade school, which were taken in early September always showed me with a golden tan from spending nearly every day at the pool - I seem to have lost the ability to tan naturally. I don't even tan when using tanning beds, which I won't use nowadays anyway (and I honestly miss the "ultraviolet coffin"). I don't burn either, which is just bizarre. I just get warm-colored freckles over the bridge of my nose. That's how you know I've been out in the sun. I start morphing into the Wendy's girl. (Good thing my hair isn't red!)
A medium tan on me looks like most other people's pale winter skin tone. So all I can do is use self-tanners to get some color.
Spray tans are great too, and I will get them for special occasions or vacations. But they fade quickly and I just find them to be a pain. I like to control when and where I put on my tan. Here's how I do it.
I make my own sugar scrub. Just use about half a cup of table sugar and a tablespoon or so of olive oil, mix it into a paste and take it into the shower. Just try not to get it wet until you scrub your skin with it. You want it to stay thick and paste-like. A harsher version of this is to use coarse kosher salt in lieu of sugar. They both work - it just depends on the amount of exfoliating you want to do.
ARMS & LEGS:
Since my appendages don't break out, I'm using L'Oreal's Sublime Bronze Pro Perfect Airbrush self-tanner in Medium.
|No, it's not an air horn.|
Also, it claims a "fresh citrus scent." I've never encountered any type of citrus that smell this this, but it's a better scent than any other self-tanner I've ever used.
FACE, NECK, CHEST & BACK:
For my sensitive, acne-prone areas, Clarins Self-Tanning Milk is gentle and hasn't caused breakouts. (Thanks, @reinhoren!)
The color blends nicely with my arms and legs, is able to be layered to obtain a lovely, golden shade, and also smells better than other self-tanners (yay!).
So that's how I'm spending my summer in shorts, tanks, sundresses and faking a tan. I feel like I can finally participate in summer again!