I’m not going to lie, I had a fake tanning malfunction the other day. Absolutely no discredit to the actual product which I love but it just goes to show that even the most beauty savvy ladies can have a fight with their goo cabinet (aka my entire bathroom) and lose. Needless to say my little finger and right ankle look like a 90 year old beach bum. Cue comments like “OMG you look like you actually STOLE someone else’s finger!!!”
Meanwhile here in Australia we are slowly but surely heading towards summer. It SMELLS like summer, a horrible sensation particularly when 3 hours later you’re struck by a freezing wind who didn’t get the memo that it’s practically October and please leave so I can rock my short shorts and find any excuse to live life in a bikini and thongs. (The Australian kind people).
Which brings me to my 5-star (yeah why not?) guide to prepping for the sunny season, or for those of you heading into winter, maybe this can be your routine in an attempt to fool everyone into thinking you’re a squillionaire who just stepped off the beaches of Tahiti. And no, you are not about to be faced with a regurgitated 6 page magazine spread on the “hottest” new summer products (which happened to be in the free goodies box at the office) and “expert advice” which seems to repeat last year’s. We all know how to exfoliate.
First things first and most women’s primary goal: bikini body. You have two options chickadee; 1) don’t give a flying f!$k about what other people think about you and rock what your mamma gave you, or 2) get off your hiney and go for a walk, run, tabata, dance, class, gym whatever, don’t care. DO NOT STARVE YOURSELF. No one likes skinny fat – the uber slim but so unfit I might die walking upstairs look. Trust me, I had a bad break up once and that was me. Not only did I STILL have cellulite, but I copped it daily for my number of ribs on display. Strong is the new (TRUE) Sexy. More on my work out routine later (and no I am not in peak form – therefore you might like my more realistic approach which still includes red wine).
Next step: skin. All that sexy skin that’s about to be on display for at least 3 months. To those of you who are naturally brown and dark and beautiful. I hate you. (I don’t really but my transparent exterior does). Again a few options: 1) Rock the pale look, definitely suits many and I applaud your cancer free life; 2) go and roast yourself on a beach (I have two minds about this. Yes melanoma, but why is it my mother who literally turned burned toast brown every year of her youth, is now in her 60s and not a single problem? And yet my english-skinned father who bathed in sunscreen constantly has skin cancers burnt off? SCIENCE???) or 3) fake it baby. I have spent years trying to find the perfect fake tan and I think I’m 90% of the way there. For starters, a mousse applied using a mitt seems to be the way to go (I prefer this over spray tans which are overpriced and seem to fade much faster – not to mention spraying chemicals around your face cannot be good for your lungs.) My favourite to date is Moroccan Tan mousse which is faster and easier than a spray tan, turns an awesome natural brown even on pale skin, and can develop in 2 hours. The bottle lasts forever too.
Hair: please do not straighten your hair before you go to the beach. Please. And please do not waste your money on sea salt sprays (free is acceptable. There’s also this thing called a tap, salt, and a spray bottle = $$$ savings). My favourite is either go with your natural look or plait it when wet however you like for some hot waves the next day. Blondes – enjoy. There are serious low maintenance perks to being a brunette sometimes.
Hairy bits: now this is a hotly debated topic and as a beauty therapist I’ve had to deal with all kinds of hairiness but here are my thoughts. Laser: great if you have the moolah but please only go to a laser specific salon. Do not go to any local beauty salon that also offers laser services as having seen the dark side of beauty, there are limited laws on the standard of training, equipment, and service and you have a good chance of getting a therapist who did a 3 day course, 0 experience, and a badly made machine with cracked glass in the head. Nooo so gooood. Laser clinics at least pride themselves on their service and high standards.
Waxing, nether regions yes. Legs, underarms, even eyebrows I’m actually not a fan of, you look like a wookie for 2-3 weeks while its growing. A good old fashioned razor is my preference, and take the time to learn how to do your own brows so you can tweeze away at home. (Will make you sneeze – just sayin).
Makeup. Good lord it has taken me YEARS to finally find beach approved makeup. A full face of slap never goes down well unless you’re going to the beach via a job interview, and it’s really only in the last year that my favourite beauty products have come out for beach friendly face.
1) Moisturiser with sunscreen
2) Maybelline Fit Me Shine -Free stick applied only where you need it
3) Bronzer as gentle contour or a Bobbi Brown shimmer brick
4) Waterproof mascara of your choosing and IF you’re like me, a very thin line of Maybelline black gel liner
5) Nivea soft rose lip balm
Now go rock your sexy swimsuit with a cheap but pretty bangle, a sweet kaftan, hot ass shades, Haviana thongs and an indirect spritz of something coconutty and delicious.
All my love,