That moment in late fall or early winter when you realize you’ll be on a beach vacation in a few days. You’re pasty, paunchy and—let’s face it—a little furry. What to do in the week before you leave? We, of course, have some ideas.
I know I’m entering broken-record territory here, but everyone should be exfoliating year round…and especially before bikini-wearing! If you plan on self-tanning before you leave for your winter getaway, exfoliation will ensure optimal application. You can use an actual scrub, like Yu-Be Foaming Skin Polish, which can be used on face and body. It is strong as a face scrub and very gentle as a body scrub. You can also exfoliate every day while you shower with a Sasawashi Mesh Body Scrub Towel. Need more options? In Mio Skincare’s Strong Is The New Skinny Kit, you’ll find another great scrub, Double Buff, which is super-effective as it is designed to be used on dry skin—before you shower. If manual scrubbing just isn’t your thing, another easy option is to choose an exfoliating body wash, like Glytone, which works through chemical, not physical, exfoliation.
Exfoliation is important—but it’s not enough! You’ve got to be properly moisturized as well. Skin feels and looks better when it’s properly hydrated. In the winter, try mixing a body oil and body cream together and applying right after the shower while skin is still warm and damp. You can mix Heaven Skincare Firming & Stretch Mark Oil and Alchimie Forever Dry Skin Balm or (more Mio Skincare!) Mio Skincare’s The Activist Firming Active Body Oil and The A Cream Firming Active Body Cream.
Going For The Gold?
Throw in a specialty treatment product, like Mio Skincare Get Waisted Sculpted Body Shaper, if you’re so inclined. This would be applied before any other body care (except self-tanner), as you’d want the active ingredients to seep directly into skin, unimpeded.
Everyone looks a bit better slightly sun-kissed. Who doesn’t want to look slimmer and tauter before hitting the beach? Institut Esthederm self-tanners are so easy to apply, and look completely natural. For the body, you may want to apply Sun Sheen Light Self-tanning Body Lotion a few times during the week before your vacation so the color can gradually deepen. Be sure to apply a facial self tanner, too, like Sun Sheen Light Self-tanning Face Cream so your coloring is cohesive from head to toe.
I know self-tanner home application can go terribly awry, so here are my best practices. The first step is to cream up the palms of your hands before even looking at self-tanner. You don’t want to get caught tan-handed! The cream will shield your palms from getting saturated with color. If I’m in a huge rush, I like to use self-tanning towels for this step. With the number of products I apply to my body, having one more cream/oil/gel to apply is a bit of a pain. The towels can be used first thing after getting out of the shower, so they don’t interfere with all the other creams/oils/gels. In fact, if you use exfoliating tan towels, they will actually help all subsequent body products absorb deeper into your skin.
Be sure to hit the tops of your toes, sides of your feet and every part of your skin leading up to your underarm, and don’t forget the backs of your legs. So many parts of the body can be exposed that you may not think of…until you see that pale streak staring back at you on the beach.
Wipes are good to have around, too, to wash off your hands. I keep one or two in my bag the day of, and the day or two after I apply self-tanner. Sometimes during the day I’ll notice that my palms look a little too dark, or I’ll see a dark spot/streak somewhere. Wipes are a great, waterless way to clean up any tanning faux pas, no matter where you are.
Heading south for the winter? How do you prep your body? Let us know in the comments below!