How to Get the Bronze without the Booth
No bride wants a complexion so pale and pasty that it’s impossible to decipher the difference between her skin and her wedding dress. But basking in the sun or plopping down inside a tanning booth can lead to unsightly sunburns that are impossible to hide.
Luckily, there are plenty of sunless tanning options that can help you look radiant without the risk, says Dr. Joel Schlessinger, an Omaha, Nebraska-based dermatologist and cosmetic surgeon. “Additionally, they don’t open you to the possibility of infections from the booth or wrinkles and skin cancer down the line,” he says.
For an event as important as a wedding, Regina Viotto, spa director for Paul Labrecque Salon & Spa in New York, advises opting for professional airbrushing, which typically costs around $95 for a 30-minute salon treatment. “The technician holds the device and sprays you, allowing for seamless coverage,” she says. Mystic Tan booths also are an option, but be aware that small movements or squinting can lead to erratic coverage.
For the best results, Viotto recommends exfoliating every morning for a few days pre-application, and shaving the day before. You also should thoroughly moisturize your whole body in the few days prior, but skip all lotion, perfume and deodorant the day-of.
If you’re low on funds, you can always go the DIY route with bottled self-tanners. “These products have improved greatly in the last few years, with little or no streaking,” says Schlessinger. Among his favorites are Phytomer Creamy Self-Tanning Gel and Jan Marini Bioglycolic Sunless Self-Tanner, which help keep skin supple while delivering a natural-looking bronze.
Just be sure you test out any self-tanning process at least two weeks in advance to avoid unnatural colors, streaks, allergic reactions, etc. And plan your final tan for two days prior to your big day.
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