Autumn is just around the corner, but who says your summer tan has to fade? If you're a fall bride, you've probably spent most of your summer days at the beach or the pool meticulously avoiding awkward bathing suit tan lines — all in the name of that coveted golden glow to show off with your white wedding dress. And now that your big day is finally drawing near, you want to carry that sun-kissed look into fall. Since there's nothing like dry, uneven patches and blotchiness to ruin your hard work spent in the sun, we looked to the pros for their tips on how to make your summer tan last as long as possible.
Moisturize every day.
"Keeping skin soft and supple will help limit peeling and dryness often associated with sun exposure. I love Eucerin Daily Protection Moisturizing Face Lotion SPF 30 and Eucerin Daily Protection Moisturizing Body Lotion SPF 15 because they're lightweight, fast-absorbing and provide around-the-clock hydration," says makeup artist Suzy Gerstein. This is also the time to be ingredient conscious: "Look for moisturizers with superstar ingredients like hyaluronic acid, jojoba oil and ceramides that will restore hydration in your skin without disrupting your tan," says makeup artist Min Min Ma.
Gently exfoliate every few days.
"Exfoliating before self-tanning is key," says Gerstein. "But if your tan is already set in, gentle exfoliation will help slough off dry patches. Even though it may reduce the appearance of your tan, it'll help your skin tone to look more even in the end."
Elevate your look with bronzer.
"Build on your existing tan with St. Tropez Self-Tan Classing Bronzing Mousse. It doesn't streak and it mimics the look of a natural tan. I like to apply it with a slightly damp Beautyblender Body.blender so it goes on evenly and really looks like a second skin. For your face, try By Terry Tea to Tan — you might be tempted to go with a bronzer with shimmer to amp up the 'glow' factor, but one without shimmer looks the most natural in photos," says Gerstein. "Have a friend (or your soon-to-be spouse!) give you a hand with hard-to-reach places like the center of your back and behind your neck. A well-lit area while you're applying your tanner will help you prevent streakiness," says Ma.
Choose complementary makeup shades.
"Flushed, rosy cheeks are a great way to make your tan (and bronzer) look realistic while brightening your look overall. If you are layering bronzer over your tan, avoid makeup colors in peach or orange as that will look too muddy. A champagne highlighter like Becca x Jaclyn Hill Champagne Collection does wonders when it's placed in the right places: Swipe it over your cheekbones, down the center of your nose and your décolleté for an ultra-flattering glow," says Gerstein.
Swipe on a flattering nail polish.
"Neon nails are a great way to bring out your tan and could be a really fun way for a destination bride to add a pop of color to your look. Try it on your toes if it feels too overpowering on your hands. Or, go for an opaque white nail polish (like Essie Blanc) for a striking starkness that makes your tan pop. Light pink and pale blue hues work well too and they're appropriate year-round," says Ma.