Well, I thought it would be a good idea to get some idea of bloggy normality back, and a return to Tuesday Beauty is a good place to start. Earlier this year, I posted that one of my New Year Resolutions was to try a fake tan, and lo, my wish was heard and answered. Who knew that was how it worked. Have I ever told you how much I want a pony?
My wish's Fairy Godmother came in the shape of Model Co, who kindly sent me a collection of tanning goodies. It was, and still is, my first attempts at tanning at home – at tanning full stop, actually – and my favourite of the crop is the Model Co Tanning Mousse and Mitt, which I've been using on my legs now that I had the safety of winter, ie tights, to hide them in case it all went a bit wrong. I needn't have worried. It is streak free, a good colour – my legs are not orange – and the mitt is awesome, kind of buffing and blending it all on, plus keeping my hands clean. I also really like that I can see the colour as I apply it, and top up any pale patches instantly, rather than waiting for the colour to develop – or not, on those missed bits. In fact, I am genuinely surprised at how much I like this stuff. And it smells mildly of coconut, with no chemical smell, which is good, although the first time I used it I kept wondering why I had a craving for cakes. Anyway: do recommend. Strongly, in fact.
The first of the Model Co tanning booty that I tried was actually the Gradual Tan Everyday Moisturiser. As you can imagine, this one appealed to me the most, especially for first timery, because "gradual" and "everyday" sound a lot less scary than, say, deep fast tan, which is what is promised on the mousse tin. I looked up online how to do fake tanning, I asked my sometimes bottle-enhanced glowy friends for tips, and so I knew all about the importance of exfoliating and moisturising – and thought I was all good to go, as I had no signs of any dryness etc. So, when I tried the Gradual Tan, I was surprised it went as dark and as streaky as it did on my legs – but it went on perfectly on my neck and shoulders, where I was just wiping off whatever was left on my hands before washing them. Here, it was a gradual, not-streaky glow. This taught me two things: I was applying too much to my legs, and these legs of mine weren't quite as primped and prepped as I'd thought. It lasted a while though, so I might have to give this a go again now that I seem to have more of a handle on what I'm doing. That said, I really like the Mousse, so perhaps I'll just stick with that. Maybe it's the mitt that makes it easier to apply? Anyway, my next test is my hands and fingers – I want to try having tanned hands to see how pale nail varnishes look on them. Now, that is going to be tricky!
Something I only learned a few years ago is that sun tans are not a non-vintage-y thing at all, although it seems that way these days. In a 1935 beauty book I have, it describes sun tans as "... very attractive – at the right time and in the right place, and that is usually when cruising or at the seaside.". We all know Coco popularised the tan. Of course we now know, too, much more about the dangers of the sun and sun tans. The book also describes how a powder with a "delicate sunburn shade" can be used by blondes and brunettes alike to impart a "... delightful sun-tan look..." – bronzer! I don't know when or why having a tan, real or otherwise, fell so far from grace in the modern vintage world. I personally think it links to a more serious problem that I've seen cropping up here and there: the idea that you HAVE to be very pale skinned to really have that vintage look; that the bemoaning of not being able to find a foundation fair enough is some kind of badge of honour, and has become a humble brag. This massively troubles me. It's rubbish! It's just yet more tying to force something to fit into a made up mold. All skin tones are beautiful and let's enjoy them, whatever we have, and paint them, or not paint them, whatever takes our fancy, as we see fit! x
disclosure: the Model Co products were gifted to Esme and the Laneway. Views are my own.