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Faux Glow: How to Fake a Tan with Self Tanner

Not to bum anyone out too badly, but we're in what is called "the dead of winter." Speaking of dead, unless your skin has seen a tropical vacation recently, that's likely how it's looking. Don't worry: We have some self tanner and makeup tips to have you looking sun-kissed without hitting the salon.

I get it—your skin is looking pale. Trust me, I understand. But please, please promise me you won't step foot in a tanning bed. You know better! Spray tans are a great alternative, but what if you don't even have time for that? Don't worry, with some self tanner and a few simple makeup tricks, you can turn Snow White into Saint-Tropez.

Faux Glow: Steps 1-2

1. Start with a bare face. Add 1–2 pumps of self tanner like BareMinerals Faux Tan Face to your moisturizer, and apply evenly. Then mix a drop or two of a bronze illuminator, such as Revlon PhotoReady Skinlights Face Illuminator in Bronze Light, with your regular liquid foundation, and apply with a beautyblender. Spiking your foundation and applying with a damp beautyblender is going to give your skin a radiant, healthy glow.

2. Using a cream bronzer like Sonia Kashuk's Undetectable Creme Bronzer, apply to the contour areas — under the cheekbones, at the temples, and around the hairline. With a duo-fiber brush like the Real Techniques Stippling Brush, work in small circular motions, blending back toward your hairline.

Faux Glow: Steps 3-4

3. Dust your T-zone with a translucent setting powder to set your cream or liquid products. Keep the rest of your skin fresh and dewy.

4. Now, take a bronze or golden powder highlighter like Physician's Formula Shimmer Strips Custom Bronzer in Sunset Strip, and dust the tops of your cheekbones, above your cupid's bow, and a little bit down the bridge of your nose.

Faux Glow: Step 5

5. To really round out your newfound glow, stick with warm, bronze tones on the eyes and lips! The colors in this L'Oreal Dual Effects Eye Shadow in Treasured Bronze would be lovely paired with Kevyn Aucoin Lip Gloss in Neottiana.

For more of Ivy's makeup tutorials, visit Wake Up for Makeup.


Ivy Boyd

I have a Bachelor's degree in Graphic Design, but it's creating works of art on faces that I love most. By day, I am a Senior Education Consultant for Sephora as well as a freelance makeup artist. The rest of the time, I'm creating content for my makeup and beauty blog, Wake Up for Makeup, reading product reviews, watching tutorial videos and reading makeup artist books. I live and breathe this stuff and if you could eat makeup, I'd probably do that too. I also love painting abstracts, running, attending music festivals and acting weird with my husband and our two awesome cats. I'm here to tell you what products are legit, how to better use the ones you have, give you ideas to shake up your routine and guide you through some fun tutorials I know you can dominate.

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