Self-Tanner

Kate Fannin, our beauty trend editor, knows how much we all covet a terrific tan during the summer. Here, she explains how to get that beach babe bronze without the harmful side effects.

Me soaking up the rays during my swim team days.

Remember when you were on the neighborhood swim team and were more concerned about your cheesy one-piece than the long-term effects of the sun? (See my 15-year-old self above for reference.) What I wouldn’t give to have that perfect tan shade again, albeit in a much SAFER way. Good news—you totally can, and with no chlorine or kickboard required. Here are some quick steps and picks for achieving the perfect “swim team” tan without risking serious sun damage:

1. Get Ready: Use a great body exfoliator or soap in the shower to prep the skin (shaving also helps). Some good options include Kate Somerville ‘ExfoliKate® Body’ Intensive Exfoliating Treatment or Fresh Seaberry Exfoliating Soap.

2. Get Set: Use a lotion or cream around areas that are susceptible to absorbing too much product (i.e., the often-dry parts) like heels, ankles, knees and elbows. A few of my faves are Estée Lauder ‘Nutritious’ Energy Lotion, L’Occitane Almond Milk Concentrate and Clinique Deep Comfort Body Moisture.

3. Tan!: With so many new formulas available, there’s definitely one for everybody—and every body! (Or face!) Check out Xen-Tan ‘Absolute Luxe’ Dark Lotion. It’s non-greasy and has no icky self-tanner odor—it even has Scent Secure technology to make sure. Also, St. Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Mousse is a good bet—you can’t argue with an Allure “Best of Beauty” winner AND 5-star customer ratings!

One last tan tidbit…

If you’re in a hurry or traveling, try one of my “hall of fame” self-tanning favorites: Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Glow Pads—travel-friendly towelettes that exfoliate AND give a gorgeous tan all in one! Use at night (after shower and before bed), and by morning, you’re gorgeously tanned and guaranteed to score compliments about your glowing skin! Best of all, they come in both face and body options.

And that’s my (tan) take!
—Kate

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Pool-Party Pretty, Pronto

Ahh, summertime, when cold-weather gear gives way to…bathing suits. The first pool-party evite hits your inbox and you realize you never got around to those extra Pilates classes and spa appointments. No need to panic or send lame excuses—these pool beauty lifesavers will get you head-to-toe-gorgeous in no time flat.

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Mascara is the one makeup item most women won’t leave the house without, but who wants to look like a raccoon in the pool? On the other hand, removing waterproof mascara can often be a bear. CARGO ‘Better than Waterproof’ Mascara truly lives up to its name, and comes off (when you want it to) with warm water and gentle pressure—no need for special eye-makeup remover.

With no time for a waxing or dealing with ugly razor bumps, you’ll be glad to have the Bliss ‘Trim & Bare It’ Grooming System. This handy cordless gadget has four attachments for trimming and micro-shaving delicate areas (and also can be used on eyebrows and facial hair). Best of all, you can use it in the shower to cut down on prep time.

Self-tanner: the slimming, concealing gift to bodies everywhere. We love Clarins Self Tanning Instant Gel—it dries ultra-fast, and the oil-free, streak-free formula gives you a natural golden (not orange) color that lasts.

When it comes to poolside makeup, most of us want to look carefree and water-sporty, but could use a little help to cover imperfections or dark circles. CARGO ‘blu_ray’ High Definition Concealer is waterproof, long-wearing, and designed for completely natural-looking coverage in places you want it—with a line-smoothing ingredient to boot.

Kate Somerville truly gets pool appearance anxiety: her ‘Body Glow’ Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 20 is the perfect topper for self-tanner. Not only does this lightweight lotion give you the best kind of sun protection, it contains caffeine for firming, algae for conditioning, and mango butter for softening (and a delicious smell). Bonus: light-reflecting pearls make your skin glisten beautifully in the sun.

To add extra glow to your cheeks, try AERIN Beauty Multicolor for Lips & Cheeks. This natural, radiant color looks gorgeous on every skin tone, and its subtle, luxurious rose scent makes you feel like you’re poolside at a bungalow in St. Barth’s. (Currently available in selected stores; call a Nordstrom Beauty Stylist or Live Chat to order now. Available online mid-July.)

Wearing lipstick to the pool sends a signal you’re that person who never gets her hair wet (like your mom). Up your down-to-earth factor with Dior ‘Addict Lip Glow’ Color Reviver Balm, which looks pinkish in the tube but deepens when applied to lips for a soft, natural-looking tint that lasts for hours. (It also contains sunscreen—Mom will be happy.)

The one place it’s essential to look ‘done’ is your toes. Get in the spirit of the season with Deborah Lippmann The Mermaids Summer Collection: fun, sparkly shades that glisten like treasures in the sea. (Beauty Stylist Sarah Zaret, Nordstrom Mission Viejo, turned us on to this pool-perfect line. Thanks, Sarah!)

Shop our full collection of summer essentials including sun care, skincare, makeup and fragrance.

[Story & photos by Stefanie Frank]

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This year, it’s all about getting the perfect summer tan without the harmful sun damage. We consulted Beauty Stylist Cassi Coulter at Nordstrom Mission Viejo, and she shared her favorite products for looking perfectly sun-kissed—with no sun required.

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Self Tanners

Estée Lauder Bronze Goddess Tinted Self Tanning Gelée gives a heavenly tan as well as a soft bronze shimmer when applied. Its color starts to develop in under an hour.

Xen-Tan Mousse Intense is a great weekly self tanner for face and body that gives a more natural-looking olive undertone. It’s streak-free and oil-free, and it smells delicious.

Last but not least: Clarins Self Tanning Instant Gel. One of the first self tanners to hit the market, this gel is quickly absorbed, and it’s beautiful on both the face and body.

Expert tip: be sure to exfoliate before any self tanning application, and always apply to well-dried skin.

Bronzers

Perfect your glow with Bobbi Brown Bronzing Powder, one of my favorites—a little goes a long way. I use the ‘Golden Light’ shade for fair skin and the ‘Medium’ shade for warmer skin with cinnamon undertones.

Laura Mercier ‘Matte Radiance’ Baked Powder (in shade 03 or 04) is also a beautiful way to give the face, neck and décolletage a warm summer glow.

Expert Tip: You can also use bronzer to color-correct. If your face and neck are lighter than your body, you can even out your skin tone by applying bronzer with a large fluffy brushlike the Bobbi Brown Bronzer Brush—on your neck and all around the edges of your face (jawline, hairline and sides of face).

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