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HOW TO FAKE IT AND BE HEALTHY; Expert advice on how to tan.

IMAGINE walking into a beauty salon and leaving 20 minutes later with a perfect, streak-free, sunkissed, just-off-the-beach tan.

Most people want their bodies to look good all year around and to maintain an attractive tan. At the same time, there are concerns about the possible risks of long-term damage to our skin from over-exposure to the sun or incorrect use of sunbeds.

The answer to any skin damage concern is to understand the tanning process, and be fully aware of how to tan safely - both indoors and outdoors - by taking expert advice.

SunSeekers UK centres have qualified consultants to access your individual skin type and advise on skincare programmes.

They give a simple six-rule plan to help you tan safely:

Never sunbathe on the same day as a tanning session.

Always leave at least 24 hours between tanning sessions.

Always wear eye protection goggles.

Always obtain a skin assessment before using indoor tanning equipment.

Follow a responsible programme that takes account of tanning safely.

If you notice any abnormal skin reaction while using a sunbed, stop immediately and seek advice.

You could be tanning to prepare your skin for a more enjoyable holiday, prolonging your tan after a holiday, getting yourself prepared for a special occasion or just want a desirable all-year-round tan, SunSeekers UK can help you make sure your tan is beautiful, long lasting and most of all your skin stays healthy.

High street chemist Boots offers a wide range of self-tanning products which you can do at home. They have offered these helpful hints for successful self-tanning:

Always prepare the skin by showering, exfoliating and moisturising, preferably a few hours before applying any self-tanning product.

Put extra moisturiser on elbows, knees and backs of heels immediately before applying your chosen self-tan. The skin is more absorbent on these areas and can become too dark.

Dilute self-tanning with moisturiser for areas which don't naturally tan as much as the rest of the body - for example the face, backs of the hands and feet.

Apply evenly using latex gloves to prevent staining the palms of the hands and wash after applying to remove the tell-tale signs of self-tanning.

If you are self-tanning for the first time, try a product which has a slight tint so that you can see where you have applied the lotion to avoid streaking.

Call any Boots and ask for the Sunshop team who will be able to help with any questions you may have on self tanning and their products.

All major cosmetic counters also have their own tanning products - all their sales staff will be more than happy to advise you on products that would be suitable for you and your needs.

WORDWIDE INTEREST IN AIRBRUSH TANNING

SABRINA Pace from Cardiff has always been fair-skinned.

Instead of relying on the sun for a little extra summer colour, she tried many methods of fake tanning.

'I've used sunbeds, sunless tanning lotions, sprays. You name it, I've tried it,' she says.

She was never completely satisfied. Her tan was usually orange or streaky.

Now Sabrina has her tan professionally airbrushed onto her skin: 'This was instant gratification,' she says. 'You could tell immediately and it looks so natural.'

Miss Pace acquired her new tan lines from a Su-Do Body Art System, subsidiary of Simair Graphics Equipment Ltd, the UK's leading experts in airbrush equipment for almost 25 years.

In Cardiff, the sun-shy can be airbrushed at Cuticles by Su-Do Technician Mandy Roberts for pounds 20 per tan. The airbrush system lightly mists the skin with a tanning lotion.

The lotion contains DHA, or dihydroxy acetone, which is an additive which has been safely used in sunless tanners for over 30 years.

The DHA reacts with the amino acids on the skin's surface to produce the tan.

n Su-Do Tropical Airbrush Tan offers no protection from the sun.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Wales On Sunday (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:May 25, 2003
Words:642
Previous Article:Readers' postcards.
Next Article:TAN-TASTIC!; How to look good and stay skin safe.

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