Fake Tan Contouring Tips From The Experts

by / last updated August 30, 2013


Self-tanning has come along way from it’s humble beginnings in the 1950s, when the first fake tan – the questionably named ‘Man Tan’  – first hit the shelves. Since then, tanning techniques and formulas have become ever more advanced, giving more believable results and helping to pave the path from streaky to sun-kissed and sublime. A particular trend in recent years has been contouring – the precise application of tan to enhance and disguise body features as required.

Here, Leighton Denny Sun-Believable tan expert Sam Marshall gives us top tips on clever contouring…

“Sculpting in general is all about having a good handle on your spray gun, as you’ll need to alternate between two shades to hide areas of imperfection, and highlight the best bits. However, don’t be tempted to get too trigger happy on the areas that a client wants to accentuate. Keep it light – it’s better to apply two light coats than one heavy coat, as this allows the tan to settle on the client and dry without the streaks and drips of fake tan caused by over-spraying.

“For the legs, the areas you generally want to turn your attention to are the shin bone and outer thigh. You need to darken any areas you want to contour, tone or slim and then highlight those you wish to illuminate. Apply the product down either side of the legs (inner and outer), as this will instantly make the legs look narrower by drawing the eye to the middle area. You can also apply tan down the calf bone to make legs look longer.

“For arms, aim the gun on the underside of the upper arm to make bingo wings look slimmer and add definition to the biceps.

“The torso is always high on the list of requests for extra definition! After applying a base colour, darken any areas on the stomach you want to contour, for example down either side of the stomach from ribs to hips, working with the natural line of muscles to add definition and make the client  look slimmer.

“Facially, you can also carefully contour in cheekbones when tanning the face, by spraying the side of the face with a ‘z’ shape. This catches where the sunlight would hit the skin, creating cheekbones in the process.

“Follow these tips and your client will look more sculpted and defined. Model looks with no effort!”

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