Wednesday 28 September 2016

Beauty panel: Tanning Bed

Tanning while you sleep sounds like it could go horribly wrong, but the results are no nightmare

Sarah Caden

Published 08/06/2015 | 02:30

Pictured, from left, Clarins Radiance Plus Golden Glow Booster for Body; Sisley Self-Tanning Hydrating Facial Skin Care; Rimmel Sun Shimmer Self Tan Mousse in Medium Matte; Lancome Flash Bronzer Night-Sun; He-Shi Overnight Ageless Tanning Balm. Photo: Kip Carroll
Pictured, from left, Clarins Radiance Plus Golden Glow Booster for Body; Sisley Self-Tanning Hydrating Facial Skin Care; Rimmel Sun Shimmer Self Tan Mousse in Medium Matte; Lancome Flash Bronzer Night-Sun; He-Shi Overnight Ageless Tanning Balm. Photo: Kip Carroll

It took a while for us to get the message in milk-bottle Ireland, but looking like you dipped yourself in Cuprinol come summer is so, so over. Which is not to say that our affair with self-tan is over. It's not, particularly not for those of a snow-white complexion, but now, it's all about the subtlety. We don't even call it fake tan any more, for God's sake.

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This summer's skin-tone-tweaking new releases are very much in the spirit of subtle and sophisticated self-tanning. In particular, there are several potions specifically designed to be used overnight, which don't stink, are not sticky and sweaty, and won't end up bronzing your bedclothes. You'd say we've come a long way from the likes of Sun Shimmer, but their latest release isn't half bad either. Still, no self-tan will shine if you forget to exfoliate. Dry patches of skin will absorb extra product and leave you looking piebald. Which was never a good look.

Best Overall

Clarins Radiance Plus Golden Glow Booster for Body, €36, Clarins counters nationwide

Last summer, Clarins launched their Radiance Plus Glow Booster for the face and this year's body version functions similarly. Add a drop or two to your body lotion and apply anywhere you want to appear sun-kissed. "I like that you can control the subtlety or strength of the colour, and one drop goes a long way," said a panellist. "No fuss, no stink."

Best Smooth and Creamy

Sisley Self-Tanning Hydrating Facial Skin Care, €96, Brown Thomas Dublin and Cork

There are two problems with facial self-tan. One is that it can settle into pores and make them look dirty and huge. Second is that it dries out the skin. You'll have neither of these problems with this pricey product, which bestows a golden tan in two hours and is very skin-kind. "A summer staple," said one panellist. "Will replace my regular moisturiser for the months ahead."

Best Matt Magic

Rimmel Sun Shimmer Self Tan Mousse in Medium Matte, €10.49, available nationwide

Rimmel's wash-off Sun Shimmer was the tanning starting point for many an Irish teenager, and left us gleaming like an Oscar statuette. This is the first self-tan mousse from the brand, and it's matte, to boot. "Shimmer-free, and it lives up to its promise of drying fast for speedy dressing," one panellist said.

Best Face Flash

Lancome Flash Bronzer Night-Sun, €30, Lancome counters nationwide

Flash Bronzer means reliability in the world of self-tan. This is a great new product, which, as the name suggests, you leave on overnight. "As good a moisturiser as any night cream," a panellist said. "Gorgeous tan. On my face. Not my pillow."

Best Body Balm

He-Shi Overnight Ageless Tanning Balm, €28.13, for stockists, see he-shi.eu

Texturally, this is thicker than the other overnight products featured, and, well, balmier. There is hydrating hyaluronic acid in here, as well as all the He-Shi tanning know-how that makes for a lasting tint that develops by morning and endures evenly. "Foolproof and fully replaces the need for body lotion, too," said one panellist.

Email thepanel@independent.ie

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