Australian model Nicole Trunfio tans it up at an event earlier this year.

Australian model Nicole Trunfio tans it up at an event earlier this year. Photo: Getty

It’s not exactly rocket science, but there’s a definite art to applying fake tan. Here are a few tweaks you can make to your routine to keep your colour looking believable (read: even and golden) all summer long.

1. Always start from scratch.
Dry, flaky skin is fake tan enemy number one. Exfoliating prevents patchiness, so start by giving your body a thorough scrub, focusing on trouble spots like the ankles, elbows and knees, to remove dead skin and last weekend’s leftover tan. Added bonus: as well as keeping your tan looking even, regular exfoliation also helps to prevent in-grown hairs and can kick-start sluggish circulation.

2. Face the facts.
This may seem a little high maintenance but it pays to invest in a face-specific tanning lotion. They’re not only formulated to be lighter, but they also boast the same kind of nourishing ingredients you’d expect to find in a regular face cream to minimise the chance of breakouts.

St. Tropez face tanner.

St. Tropez face tanner.

The gold standard for face tanners, St Tropez Rapid Face, $45, 1800 358 999, develops in close to two hours.

 Just remember: subtlety is key, so to avoid tell-tale tide-lines, leave the product to dry before using a dry cotton wool ball with a dab of Vaseline to remove excess product from around the hairline, brows and jawline.

3. Re-think your makeup.
Although adding a little bronze to the face makes the eyes look instantly brighter and the teeth whiter, sadly fake tan doesn’t fair so well with soft makeup. Once the colour has developed, that’s your cue to ditch the soft pink lip glosses and silver eye shadow for warmer shades, such as a coral blush or fuchsia- pink lipstick to play up the golden undertones in the skin. Try: Revlon Luxurious Living Lipstick in Orange Flip or Love That Pink, $25.95, 1800 025 488.

 Too busy to fake tan?
If you’ve left the run too late to fake tan, add a hint of oil to your regular body lotion and blend it along the arms, décolletage and legs for the same extra-lustrous sheen – minus the fake tan smell. Tom Ford Neroli Portofino body oil. $100

DailyStyle