This summer is all about illuminating the skin with a retro twist for the ladies, while men are going for that 80s/90s Miami tan. We’re also embracing the Olympian tan, which is about working with the lines on the body to achieve an athletic and toned appearance – here’s how to get the look...
The Pin Up Tan
This summer is all about luxury Hollywood glamour with an art deco feel; bronzed, dewy, golden-looking skin with a flawless finish. This is about using your self tan to add a golden sheen to the skin and then adding products to give it a flawless complexion. Marilyn Monroe, a true Hollywood legend known for her starring roles in 'Some Like It Hot' and 'Gentlemen Prefer Blondes', was very much an advocate for glowing illuminated skin, knowing that the way the light hit her would accent her celebrated curves in all the right ways - a technique that is still used today in modern Hollywood, as seen at the Golden Globes and the Oscars.
To achieve this look, use my James Read Gradual Tan over two days. For the face, use my BB Gradual Tan Pen which will help to reflect light, then use illuminating products to achieve that Hollywood style.
The 70s Retro Tan
Summer 2012 is also time for the comeback of the vintage 70s-inspired retro glow; a celebration of the tan, the allure and glamour of golden skin and how good it makes you feel. 1976 was the hottest summer on record in the UK and coincidentally it was the year I was born. I don’t know whether that determined my career, but certainly the decade of disco, decadence and deep, dark tans all came together for me to influence my brand. One of the images that is imprinted on my memory from that era is of Farrah Fawcett in a red swimsuit with her Californian honey-gold tan, which was the biggest selling poster of all time at 12 million. I wanted to create a range of products that would safely deliver this look - and many others besides.
Working with the skin’s natural colour tones, this comprehensive range of products will give a healthy looking colour without sun. This tanning style is about layering the product thinly to achieve a natural deep tan, then using a thick moisturiser to give the skin that just-out-of-the-sea look, wet and dewy.
The Miami Tan
This is the ultimate man tan, inspired by the late 80s/90s Miami Vice TV show which featured deeply bronzed skin. The 80s and 90s were about the darker tan; a lot of models embraced this look and let’s not forget Don Johnson. Darker tans are growing in popularity, with brands like St Tropez bringing out their self-tanning dark mousse that's designed to give you a deeper glow. To achieve this look, go for products in a darker shade than you’re used to; Dark Mousse and bronzing lotion products are best for faking it.
The Olympian Tan
This tan is inspired by the 1981 film Chariots of Fire and the 2012 Olympics; it's about using self-tanning products to achieve the appearance of an athletic and toned-looking body by following its lines and curves.
To achieve this look, start by applying liquid tan to the body using a tanning mitt, then wait one hour and apply a second layer, leaving it on for 8 hours. On day two, mix a small amount of gradual tan with your moisturiser, dab onto a brush and stand in front of the mirror. Flex your muscles and brush over the lines of the body. Pay extra attention to your décolleté, shoulders and fronts of your legs. You can also do this using a bronzing spray in front of the mirror - I recommend L'Oreal Paris Sublime Bronze Express pro spray.