If the closest you’ll get to a dose of exotic sunshine this summer is moving your desk a little closer to the office window, there are plenty of options for cheating your way to a enviable summer glow.
The most obvious option is fake tan – but if you want to convince people that you’ve just stepped off your private jet from St Tropez, you need to make sure the colour is natural and coverage is streak-free. Always exfoliate the night before to smooth rough patches, as dry knees, elbows and heels have a nasty habit of turning suspiciously orange. And wash your hands thoroughly after each application, as dark palms are a huge giveaway – in fact, if I suspect somebody is wearing fake tan, it’s the first place I look…
I stick to gradual tanners, which allow me to control the intensity of colour – with the added bonus being that they don’t take so long to fade if I make a mistake. My weapon of choice is St Tropez Everyday Gradual Tan, £13.16. Applying the rich, silky cream to skin twice a week is enough to maintain a healthy glow – but if you’re looking for a deeper colour, you can up the ante to daily applications.
If you have an office job, the chances are that your face is the most visible expanse of skin – so make sure you invest in a good quality bronzer. It’s amazing how much difference a sweep of bronzer will make to the complexion – I recommend it especially on mornings when you are feeling tired, ill or hungover (god forbid…) For a natural look, I steer clear of bronzers that contain shimmer, which is still a bit of a mystery to me – sun-kissed skin doesn’t magically start secreting glitter, so why do beauty brands think we require it in our bronzers? Dior Bronze Matte Sunshine High Protection Bronzing Powder SPF20, £28, gives a beautiful, shine-free, even-toned tan.
However, there is one place where shimmer is positively encouraged during the summer months – and that is on your eyes. There is no prettier shade for highlighting a tan than gold, so be adventurous with your eye shadow and liners- Guerlain Terracotta Fard Metal Eyeshadow & Liner in Gold Rush, £19, will lend a gorgeous glow to your flutter.
Finally, complete your sun-kissed summer look with a feel-good summer scent that will instantly transport you to exotic shores. Two of my favourites include Escada Marine Groove, from £21, and Kenzo Summer Eau de Parfum, from £34.50 – both fresh, lively, and pretty. After all, it is only when you feel relaxed and summery that you will really radiate that authentic sun-kissed glow – and luckily for British weather, no sunshine is required.