Self-tanning in years past has been a procedure that hasn’t necessarily been the most common or openly spoken about amongst people of colour. However, people feeling paler than usual is not new, nor is it exclusive to fairer people. During winter months it’s common to notice that your complexion looks more lighter than it usually is, so brands, premium and drugstore alike, creating self-tanner for people of deeper complexion feels like the product that people of colour didn’t know we needed- or could want.
Tanning for deeper skin tones isn’t necessarily to make skin appear darker but rather to accentuate the skin giving a radiant glow and to even out body skin tone. It can also be used as a way to camouflage scars and blemishes, creating the appearance of smooth, even skin on the body.
From Fenty Body Lava to Jergens Instant Sun Tanning Mousse: products that make the skin more radiant and bronzed that are accessible for black people have become more mainstream than they have ever been and are here to stay. The rise of self-tanning and spray tan procedures serves as a great pick me up, just like any other beauty treatment.
Youtuber Jackie Aina and The Plastic Boy both swatched the Vita Liberata Body Blur; and with great reviews apiece. They rave of the Body Blur offering a beautiful “just-home-from-St Tropez” glow. It richens the complexion, providing a deep red undertone to enhance the tanned look and has just the right amount of shimmer to make your skin look gloriously moisturised and sun-kissed. St. Moriz Medium Dark Tanning Mousse and Sosu Dripping Gold Luxury Tanning Lotion are also firm fan favourites! They all have different consistencies so that you can trial them and see which consistency works best for you.
If you’d rather make your tanning experience just that- an experience- then it would be worth visiting a specialist clinic such as Sugared and Sprayed Sugaring and Tanning Studio (S&S). Founded in 2018, they champion treatments for bodies of “All shades, shapes and sizes”. For women who aren’t typically represented in mainstream media as it pertains to body treatments, it’s no surprise that S&S has become a safe haven for a diverse range of clients, who have left after an airbrush tanning treatment feeling confident and fully satisfied. “Spray tans are not designed for full coverage, but to deepen your natural colour and give you an overall body glow.” says Founder Shaynae at the S&S Studio.
Top tips for getting an even tan as a BW:
Start with a blank canvas.
Before self-tanning, or even if you’ll be going to a studio to have it done professionally, it is always good to have a nice, blank base. Showering to remove any product or dirt from your skin will ensure you’re not placing tan on top of any impurities or extra oils you have on your body. Also, showering before your procedure means you won’t have to worry about having to get into the showing straight after which could affect the quality and overall look of the tan.
Getting rid of any dead skin on your body is a good idea if you want an even, smooth tan. Use your favourite exfoliating scrub paired with an exfoliating mitt (or your bare hands), and gently scrub in circular motions. Enjoy this step, tanning is a luxurious experience so every step should be thoroughly indulged in!
Use a gradual tanning product.
Applying the tan gradually is key to achieving your desired result without having to worry about overapplying or an inconsistent result. This can be ensured by using a tanning product that comes as a spray or foam. Using a little at a time will allow the product to be used in a buildable manner.
Apply with a good tanning mitt.
Tanning mitts are much like beauty blenders- soaking up all the product is a big no-no! Here’s an affordable and quality tanning mitt that we recommend.
Not being able to freely travel like we used to has left many people missing the “gold, no spray tan” look that comes with spending time in some (real) hot weather. So regardless of your stance on black people self-tanning, there’s a reason why people opt for treatments and products that mean they can have that bronzed look all year round. So next time you want to feel a bit more bronze or even if you have a special event coming up and would like to add a bit of depth of colour, we give you permission to feel confident and comfortable to book that tanning appointment or do it at home with the products available to give you your desired glow.