How to Get a Perfect Tan for Your Wedding Day

Like every bride, you want that perfect, bronze glow on your wedding day but don’t want to spend hours damaging your skin to get it. Well I’m here to tell you how to get flawlessly tanned skin in time for your wedding while spending minimal time in those skin damaging tanning beds. Even the palest of skin tones can achieve a beautiful, healthy glow like Jennifer Aniston or Kim Kardashian. Here I will explain some simple techniques to achieve your ideal skin tone and how to plan your tan right down to a few days before your big day.

Step 1: Choose your Shade

First you must decide how tan you want to go. It is important to remember that you will be up next to your new husband in all your photos. You do not want to be shades darker than him. If your man is willing to get his glow on too then great, but if not be careful how tan you decide to take your skin tone. If you have brown locks you can generally get away with going a few shades darker than a blond bombshell. You should also consider the time of year you are getting hitched and if it is a destination wedding; these are all factors that will affect your shade choices. Go into your tanning experience with a plan; cruise through a few magazines and check out how different celebs sport their tans. Blending hair and skin tones together can allow for a darker skin color to look more natural. Just think of Snookie; you don’t want to be so far off your natural shade that you stick out like a sore thumb in your big white gown.

Give yourself about 8 weeks to achieve your perfect color.         This will give you time to play with shades and lighten up a little if you go too dark at first. But make sure you have achieved your desired color in time for other events as well, such as your bachelorette party or bridal showers. These are also important events that you will want to look great for.

Step 2: Exfoliate

You want to start with clear, smooth skin. Use a light exfoliator with a gentle loofah to slough away dead skin cells and keep skin clear. The exfoliator I love that will not blow your skin care budget is Body Clear Body Wash by Neutrogena; it packs extra blemish fighting and moisturizing in one step. For a loofah choose a fiber that will not break apart while you are using it. The Skin Sponge from the Body Shop online is a popular pick for only $8. It’s ultra cool because it is made from recycled water bottles, helping reduce your “footprint”.

Not everyone needs to exfoliate every day. Try every other day while mixing in a gentle moisturizing body cleanser on the days you do not exfoliate. Any day you plan to apply self tanner however, I do recommend a gentle scrub down.

Step 3: Choose a Self Tanning Cream

You no longer need to waste time and money in a spray tan booth to get a streak free tan. New technology in self tanning lotions has made it easier than ever to achieve your perfect, streak free tan from the comforts of your own home. However, it is important to choose this product carefully. Spend a few more bucks on a higher end brand. I used Biotherm Tanning Water; it goes on smooth and streak free. There are many brands available though. Just be sure to choose a higher end lotion that will be less likely to leave an orange, streaky tinge.

Step 4: Self Tanning Lotion Application

The best way to get your ideal tan is to apply the product everyday for several days until you have your ideal shade. Then maintain the color by reapplying twice a week. If you do this for several weeks leading up to the wedding you will have enough time to determine your ideal shade. I do not recommend applying self tanners within 48 hours of the big day.

When applying the lotion you want to continue to rub it into your skin evenly until you feel that it has fully dried. This prevents streaking. Take time around ankles, elbows and knees to make sure the lotion is evenly spread and rubbed in well; these are the most likely areas for blotches to appear.

Step 4: Tanning Beds

Give yourself about six weeks of tanning so you do not need to “crash” tan and do more damage than necessary. Tan twice every two weeks for three weeks. Then reduce to one session a week for the last three weeks. Do not tan within 48 hours of the big day; you should have achieved your color by that point and you do not want to risk any mistakes so close to your wedding.                    

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