Sunday, 23 October 2011

Faking It!

Some of you may have realised that I'm naturally very, very pale and it is safe to say that I have spent quite a lot of time slathering myself with many different fake tan products over the years and er, I'm still pretty pathetic at it! I often end up with very obvious divides between my face and neck and between my wrists and hands and in general, my skin looks patch attacked.

My favourite fake tan product to date is the Make Believe Gradual Self Tan and Tan Extender. I have found so much to rave about when it comes the Make Believe products (see this post). All of the Make Believe products, that I've used, felt and smelt more like luxurious body moisturisers to apply and they delivered great results easily. Even with the gradual tanner, there is a definite change in skin colour with one application and one which is much more flattering then orange. The branding and vibe of Make Believe is amazing, and the images used on the packaging are so dreamy and inspirational.

Image from Google Image Search

Anyway, Laura was urging us to get a tan in one of her recent blog posts and she said,
'I know the nights are drawing in and the days getting colder in many places around the world but all the more reason why you should give yourself a little bronze boost :)'
This little sentence immediately brought to mind, the Make Believe image above. Suddenly, I had one of those moments where I just knew that I had(!) to be tanned as soon as possible. Unfortunately, I could not really justify forking out for Make Believe (the price being the brand's only weakness) on some whim.

So instead I looked to Soltan, the brand that Laura was so impressed with. Now Laura used the spray tan mist. I didn't because I am rubbish with spraying tan and really do prefer having more control (or at least feeling, as if I do) when I'm applying it.

So I opted for the Soltan, Beautiful Bronze gel instead and wow, make no mistake, this product gives you an instant colour which over two or three hours develops in to a semi-permanent tan that is lasting.

The instant colour really is instant (making application of the tan easy) and obvious. There is no doubt that as soon as this product met my skin, I looked tanned. The difference was so extreme that I would say even those of you blessed with a more naturally tanned complexion will instantly look more sun kissed. This product has given me one of the heaviest tans I have ever had and that is with one quite slap dash hasty application.

This is my skin naturally.

This is my skin one day after applying Soltan.

The tan does not need to be washed away after x amount of hours to get your true colour. However, I had been a bit worried about all the glitter evident during application, glitter does not really 'work' the natural tan I was seeking and I did find that after a shower, my tan was still almost as strong but it became less orange and a whole lot less sparkly. In other words, I still looked very tanned but the colour looked better (there is still something orange about this one though) and less artificial.

Ok so there was some glitter and a fake tan smell but all in all, this product is almost amazing. You see, the coverage was flawless. Yes people, I applied it all by myself and there ain't a patch to be seen. My skin looks very tanned and healthy. It also feels really soft and healthy. Even if people suspect I have faked it (which they might, because I'm never this tanned and also, those hints of orange), they would not be able to point to a patch and expose my fakery. Ha!

And what is more, is that I applied this tan four days ago and until yesterday, there was no fade at all. Today, the tan still looks even but I would say, I look sun-kissed tanned rather then bronzed or heavily, heavily tanned.

Yes, I've said a couple of times that there is something orange about this tan and there is. The tan that results after a couple of hours is not solidly orange but there is something orange about it in certain lights. Now this isn't necessarily a negative. This tan is not patchy and it gives such a smooth finish that I'm almost tempted to gloss over the whole orange thing because the tan still looks good and doesn't seem such a big deal when you think how cheap this tan is and you consider the fact that Make Believe is the only tan I have ever used that has not had an orange air about it to some degree. Rimmel, St Tropez, St Moriz, Nivea and Piz Buin (although with PB to a lesser degree) all included the orange factor to some degree.

For under £7, I think, this Soltan product is great value and have almost no doubt that even with the most beautiful packaging in the world, no product could have made me look any more tanned then I looked on Thursday, courtesy of Soltan.

How I used Soltan

Now most people have their own tanning routines but for those of you interested, I'll go through my little routine briefly.

*I exfoliated and moisturised the morning before tanning.

*I then exfoliated again with Ocean Salt from Lush (another product to rave about, see earlier post here) just before applying the gel directly on to my skin.

*I rubbed the gel in and then I donned the mitt to really buff it in to the skin.

*Prior to application, I layered Vaseline around my hairline, eyebrows, above my lip, lightly over my neck, behind my ears and on wrists and elbows.

Impassioned from MAC

You also might be interested to know that Soltanned, I have a completely different take on Impassioned from MAC. I often used Impassioned on a day off to brighten my look a little.

I would normally pair it with my pale complexion, some eyeliner and a very neutral eyeshadow (if I used one at all). My Impassioned lip typically looks like the one above. It is one of my favourite go to looks and is usually the one I would don on a 'happy' day. Impassioned just seems to me such a happy, carefree lipstick. However paired with Soltan, Impassioned looks so much brighter and for me, too much. I've always thought that Impassioned looks different in different lights and to be honest, I like the fact that it is so elusive and I think with the Soltan, it loses that and just becomes another red-pink something like in the photo here below. However, this photo flatters the combo a little (maybe because I have not shown you my whole face and the full force of the Soltan) I think in real life, the pairing looks brasher and cheaper.

Safe to say, this one is going back in the lipstick box until my tan whim has passed.
If you're interested in Impassioned, one of my faves when I'm doing the natural thing then I've posted about it here before.

Book update

So aside from the tanning this week, I have finished, After You'd Gone. This book was so powerful and bittersweet. The relationship between John and Alice was so perfect and endearing that it reminded you how simple and great life can be but then you would turn the page to a scene with Ann and suddenly, you remember how difficult some people can be and how life can too often then not be unfathomable and complicated. I'm not sure that, given the events leading to the finale, that the book could have ended in any other way.

After You'd Gone is a brilliant read and the pace like the content is varied. One page is lighthearted, the next has you in tears. While sometimes you really feel that you need to concentrate to read the writing right and then a chapter or so later, you feel as though you're not reading at all but watching the book unfold in front of you.

I think you can probably guess that I really enjoyed this one and wouldn't hesitate in recommending it to you and from what I remember, I also rate The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox (by the same author) which I read in Japan, a few years ago.

Have you used Make Believe or Soltan? What are currently reading? What bright lip flatters you? I hope you are all ok and enjoying your Sunday.



jane said...

love impassioned!

Essjay23x said...

@jane It is an amazing lipstick but makes a look in itself. No fake tan or smoky eyes required!!:)

UglyDuckling said...

I can't buy most of the normal fak tan brands in Korea. People here prefer to be white. So I'm using St tropez mousse because I used it before and I can get it shipped here easily.

I love bright lip colors, that shade is really pretty!


Essjay23x said...

@Amelia Yep, I really really like Impassioned. It blends in to the lip better then some brights and I don't hestitate in wearing it normally. I guess, I'm just not used to seeing my face so tanned. St Tropez was the first proper tan I brought. I remeember getting the little gloves and a dvd (or was it vhs) and everything. I felt so grown up!!


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