Whether it's summer or not, nothing looks sexier than having a tanned and toned physique. Even without hitting the gym, a darker skin tone creates more shadows or contours, which, in effect, gives the optical illusion of a more fit and slimmer bod.
As much as I am an advocate for avoiding the sun and its harmful rays (which will instantly age your skin), admittedly, there are many out there who'd rather bake in the sun than fake it.
So, to appease the sun worshippers and so-called haters, allow me to give you, Cosmo chicks, the lowdown on Sunbathing vs. Self-Tanning.
- You can bask and bake under the warm sun.
- It's an excuse to go on vacation to the beach or to a pool party.
- No guarantee: You can either become really tanned or red as a tomato.
- Summer months are the best time to achieve a golden tan.
- Unless you joined a nudist colony, tan lines are just as bad as laugh lines.
- The only thing you should gain from aging is wisdom, and not those horrid wrinkles and sun spots.
- It's pointless to use sunblock if your intention is to catch those harsh rays.
- The sun is your one and only tanning source.
- No need to sweat and burn, even if you look like you already have.
- Who needs a pool party to look bronzed and hot in the middle of winter vacation?
- Looking tanned with unsightly peeling and itching becomes an urban legend.
- You can have a tan 365 days a year: anytime, anywhere!
- What tan lines? The only lines I got are the contours on my seemingly toned bod.
- Slather on some tan extenders to not only nourish your supple skin, but even to prolong your faux yet fab tan!
- Look like a bronzed goddess while protecting your skin with at least SPF 30.
- Take your pick: spray tanners, lotions, booths, or airbrush; washable, semi-permanent; your options are endless (see featured image for some product ideas and check out this gallery for a description of each).
We shouldn't have to sacrifice our skin's future just to look tanned for a few days. There are so many products in the market that offer great ways to achieve a golden complexion, minus the peeling, itching, freckles, sunburn, and premature wrinkles (oh, let's not forget damaged hair, too). Choose from a variety of applications and formulations to make your tan look natural, streak-free, and most of all, hassle-free.
Nonetheless, if there's one valuable tip I can offer when it comes to prolonging one's tan, it's to moisturize, moisturize, moisturize!
Keeping the skin hydrated prevents the topmost layer of skin (a.k.a. dead skin) from flaking off faster. That top layer is the skin which has burned or has been tinted with self-tanner. And since our skin regenerates daily, we can slow it down by helping it adhere to our skin as long as possible with the use of oils, moisturizers, or even better, tan extenders, which have a small amount of non-toxic self-tanners in their formulations.
Whatever you choose, don't forget to bring your hat and sunglasses wherever you go! Who said sun protection only comes in bottles, anyway?
Watch the image-building workshop Bianca gave our Make Over Your Life Winner Amie Perez! Click here for Part 1 and on this link for Part 2. Watch for more of Bianca's columns on Cosmo.ph. If you want to ask Bianca about your most pressing fashion, beauty, or image concerns, email your question or concern to email@example.com, and she just might answer it for you!