Natural tanning:

The step-by-step guide to a flawless tan

Our beauty expert (and self-confessed tanning addict) has all the tips and tricks you need to know (minus the sun damage).

If you’re anything like me, at this time of year you’re starting to think about achieving that perfect glowing tan. The sun is starting to shine again and bearing a bit more skin is definitely on the menu. But if you’re often frustrated by the process, or find yourself wondering how to achieve a perfect self-tan, then you’re in the right place.

I put the Eco by Sonya range through its paces to prove to you that natural is the way to-go when it comes to tanning. I do this routine once a week.

And with good maintenance the tan should last about 5 days.

My step-by-step guide to nailing the perfect natural self tan glow:

Eco by Sonya’s Pink Himalayan Salt Scrub

Step 1. Prep

Before applying any tanning products it’s essential to exfoliate. I have an ‘everything bath’ where I prep my skin by shaving and getting rid of dead skin to create the perfect base for a tan. I love using Eco by Sonya’s Pink Himalayan Salt Scrub for that intense exfoliation and lasting hydration. It also helps get rid of the old leftover tan from the week before.

Eco by Sonya Pink Himalayan Salt Scrub

£28.95

Step 2. Exfoliate

The all-important exfoliation. Don’t miss this step if you want to help keep skin clear and decongested. But try a more gentle liquid exfoliant like a BHA to avoid making that angry skin any angrier. Balance Me BHA Exfoliating Concentrate  will help reduce pore size, decreasing the risk of bacterial overgrowth on the skin.

Balance Me BHA Exfoliating Concentrate

£26.00

Step 2. Moisturise

Once out of the bath, it is crucial to apply plenty of moisturiser to avoid self tan from clinging onto any dry areas. I love Eco by Sonya Coconut Milk Moisturiser as it sinks in really quickly and doesn't leave my skin sticky.

TIP: I add extra moisturiser to elbows, underarms, knees and ankles to make sure colour doesn’t stick to drier areas. Make sure to wait for the moisturiser to dry, as it could prevent the tan from adhering to skin.

Eco by Sonya Coconut Body Milk

£28.95
 Eco by Sonya Coconut Milk Moisturiser

Step 3. Applying tan

When applying tan, whether it’s foam, cream or water I like to use the Eco by Sonya Tan Applicator Mitt to ensure that my hands stay protected from any unwanted orange marks. Using a mitt ensures that the tan application is as smooth and easy as possible.

TIP: For fool-proof application, it is best to start from the bottom up.

Since Eco by Sonya Hempitan Body Tan Water is clear it might be a little tricky to see where you apply it, so it is crucial you use a mitt to help spread the product evenly. Leave out feet and hands till the end. As for the back, it really is best to ask someone to give you a hand with getting it all covered.

Eco by Sonya Face Tan Water has been a holy grail of mine for years. I love how easy it is to apply and incorporate into my skincare routine. I like to use it as a ‘toner’, so I apply it to dry, freshly cleansed skin using fingers. I wait for it to dry and apply my serums and moisturisers after. I love that it is not only a tanning product but a great hydrator (hello hyaluronic acid) and it’s non-comedogenic, so it won’t break you out. I use it a few days in a row to reach my desired colour, and then 2-3 per week to maintain it.

Eco by Sonya Tan Applicator Mitt
Eco by Sonya Tan Applicator Mitt

Eco by Sonya Tan Applicator Mitt

£12.95
Eco by Sonya Face Tan Water
Eco by Sonya Face Tan Water
Eco by Sonya Face Tan Water
Eco by Sonya Face Tan Water
Eco by Sonya Face Tan Water
Eco by Sonya Face Tan Water

Eco by Sonya Face Tan Water

£32.95
Eco by Sonya Hempitan Body Tan Water
Eco by Sonya Hempitan Body Tan Water
Eco by Sonya Hempitan Body Tan Water
Eco by Sonya Hempitan Body Tan Water

Eco by Sonya Hempitan Body Tan Water

£32.95

Step 4. Hands and feet

For any drier areas like hands and feet I make sure to apply extra moisturiser first. Then, I apply my tan to the mitt, and lightly go over my hands and feet.

TIP: Use a clean makeup brush to buff and diffuse the tan to make it look more natural. I’ve found it works wonders and helps prevent those dreaded orange patches!

Eco by Sonya’s Pink Himalayan Salt Scrub

Step 5. Maintain

Now you’ve got yourself bronzed and glowy, the trick is keeping it even and long-lasting. I like to make sure I moisturise everyday to keep the tan from fading and keep my skin in tip top condition. The Eco by Sonya Coconut Milk Moisturiser works wonders for this too!

Eco by Sonya Coconut Body Milk

£28.95

My bonus tips:

- Apply tan in the evening and let it develop overnight as most tans need at least 6 hours to fully develop.
- Allow the tan to fully dry before dressing. I always choose something that’s loose and dark so it doesn’t rub against skin or show any marks.
- When washing off the tan in the morning, keep the water slightly cooler than usual and don’t scrub skin to avoid fading the tan too quickly.