Okay so technically I'm not a complete fake tan virgin, but it's been a good 5 or 6 years since I last pranced around my bathroom with a luminous orange spray can and doused myself in the fake stuff, often with disastrous results. For the past few years I've been all about embracing my fair complexion and rocking the pale skin and freckles look wherever possible; even bronzer has been deemed too far out of my english rose comfort zone. That was until recently however, when a chat with a friend about my pasty limbs prompted me to give the daunting task of DIY tanning one more shot.
After a lot of uhhming and ahhing I plumped for the 'St Moriz' line of fake-tanning products. I'd initially looked at using a gradual tanner but any that I've trialled in the past haven't made a huge difference even after weeks of use, so my 'go hard or go home' mentality kicked into action as I went full throttle with the St Moriz Instant Self Tan Mousse in the shade 'Medium'. I also picked up the St Moriz Shimmering Bronzing Body Souffle for good measure, along with the Self Tan Applicator Mitt with the hopes of avoiding any potential streak-athons. The whole lot came to around £6 in Savers so I was pretty chuffed and safe in the knowledge that I hadn't wasted any significant amount of money if it did all end in disaster. Despite being a little wary of using products with such a tiny price tag, I'd done my research before and had actually read some pretty good comments about the line in general, so I headed home eager to give it a try.
To prepare my pins I exfoliated an hour or so before applying the tan, making sure to moisturise really well and allowing that to all sink in too. As I was heading to a party the night after I did this (typically great timing from me), I decided to just apply the colour to my legs to begin with as they're by far the palest area and I knew I could always cover up with jeans if it all went wrong! The mousse itself is a funny kind of green/grey colour and whilst it doesn't look the most appealing, I love how easy it is to see where you've been when applying it. I massaged it into my legs in circular motions using the mitt, making sure to buff it all in really well in order to prevent any obvious mistakes. One thing I love about this is that the colour starts to develop as soon as it's made contact with the skin - another great way to make sure you're applying it evenly (not so great if you don't use a glove/mitt during the application process!) Once I was happy that I'd slathered myself up to the best of my ability, I sat for a few hours before heading to bed in an old pair of loose PJ bottoms; allowing the colour to develop more overnight without staining the bedsheets!
I didn't find the mousse to have any scent to it when first applied; at least nothing too noticeable. As time went on it definitely developed into the infamous 'fake tan smell' of biscuits and popcorn, but I personally don't mind that and once I'd showered the next day it was all but gone. I gave the Bronzing Souffle a go on my arms but I have to say that aside from the smell I couldn't notice any real difference at all which was a bit of a shame. I'd read that it's supposed to be really shimmery, but even that didn't show up on me - meh!
As you can see from the above results, I ended up with a really natural golden hue after I'd washed away the excess in the shower the next day. I may still look incredibly pale to some but you have to remember that my legs had literally no colour to them at all before I did this (hence the lack of 'before' photos - sorry!). One downside is that I did find the mitt difficult to use as it wouldn't stay on my hand - plus only having the one was a bit of a disappointment. In the future I'll be buying a pair of more sturdy tanning mitts that hopefully wont be so slippy!
Overall I'm actually really happy with the results; I think St Moriz is something of a hidden gem in the world of fake tan. I've tried a few more expensive brands in the past and I have to say that this is by far my favourite. As I'm incredibly pale skinned and the tan didn't make a huge difference, I'd perhaps suggest those with a bit of a base tan pick up the shade 'Dark' as opposed to Medium, but for me this is perfect as it's natural enough for everyday use. If I were using this before a holiday or a big night out I'd probably opt for the darker version though, or apply this over the course of 2/3 nights for a deeper colour. I'm really chuffed with how natural this looks (minus one bright orange foot... I have no idea how I managed to do that) and I wont be hesitating to use the mousse again in the future - although I'm not a complete faux glow convert just yet. If you have any fake tan recommendations I'd love to know as I'm a bit of an amateur when it comes to this kind of thing!